Marine Biologist Explains Why Mick Fanning Didn’t Get Eaten By That Shark
According to a recent Stanford University study, shark attacks are down 91 percent in California since 1950, making your chances of being eaten by one pretty low. Via TheInertia.com, a surfing site:
When given the choice, apparently sharks would rather eat a big, fat seal instead of a neoprene encased, Cheeto-eating American, which is pretty much just the world's worst sausage.
I suppose that goes for Australians as well, even when they're in South African waters. Mick Fanning, who was attacked by a shark on Sunday during the J-Bay Open surfing competition in South Africa, was left shaken but otherwise unharmed by what was believed to be a Great White. The event was called off following the attack, and Fanning was declared co-champion.
So what happened out there, and why wasn't Fanning bitten? The shark seemed intent on a meal, after all. But South African marine biologist Allison Kock surmises that the animal wasn't as committed as it ay have appeared.
"The fact that [Fanning] walked away unharmed and wasn't bitten suggests that it was more of an investigatory situation," said Kock, the Shark Spotters-Muizenberg Research Manager. "But looking at the video it also appears that the shark got caught in the leash of the surfboard and may have got a bit of a fright. ... You could see a lot of splashing, and the shark had its head down. That indicates that it wasn't trying to bite him, but trying to get away."
"He (Fanning) kept on his board and even when he got knocked off his board he kept his board between him and the shark. He also lashed out at the shark, and that has been known to deter sharks on some occasions, and certainly probably contributed to him walking away unharmed. ... He actually instinctively reacted very very well."
— BBC News Graphics (@BBCNewsGraphics) July 20, 2015
It wasn't the first shark rodeo for Roxy Davis, a seven-time South African women's pro surfing champion.
"These things do happen," she said in the video above. "And from what I saw it looked like more of an exploratory investigation from the shark. It didn't look like it was planning to attack him or anything sinister."
Which scares me even more, because the notion of a "sinister" shark planning an attack, like Wile E. Coyote in his cave, is pretty unsettling.
Oh man, Mick Fanning post shark attack interview was hilarious. So glad nothing bad happened. My heart was racing just watching. #champion
— Russell Crowe (@russellcrowe) July 19, 2015
— UPROXX (@UPROXX) July 11, 2015
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