Sunday, May 20, 2007

Mother and child survive a shark attack!

A woman and her baby survived a shark attack in knee-deep water at a popular Australian holiday beach, authorities said on Thursday.

The 38-year-old was bitten on the lower leg on Wednesday afternoon while strolling with her baby in shallows at Warra Beach, 1,100 kilometres (683 miles) north of Perth, in Western Australia.
"A shark came up behind her and bit her on the calf," a St John Ambulance spokesman told Reuters. "Her husband was with her, but did not identify the shark or its size."

The woman suffered severe injuries to her lower left leg and was taken by air ambulance to Perth, where her condition was stable, the spokesman said.

The beach is famous for its shallow, fringing corals and is popular with tourists visiting the famous Ningaloo reef marine park, which draws humpback whales, dolphins and dugongs.

Australia, where sharks are protected, has had a number of shark attacks in the past year.
In January an abalone diver was partly swallowed head-first by a Great White Shark off the southeastern coast, but managed to fight his way free, suffering a broken nose and bite marks.
In December, a surfer off the southern coast survived an attack with minor injuries, while a 15-year-old boy swimming off a remote southwest beach had his leg bitten.

The U.S. state of Florida annually records by far the most shark attacks.

Between 1990 and 2005 there were 341 shark attacks off Florida, according to the U.S.-based International Shark Attack File,

Over the same period, Australia reported 74 attacks, South Africa 72, Brazil 62 and Hawaii 57.


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