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Japanese surfer dies after shark bites off his legs in Australia

36 Comments
By KRISTEN GELINEAU

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36 Comments
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not far from the area where another surfer was mauled by a shark a day earlier,

What was he thinking? Lightning never strikes the same place twice? Terrible to meet your end like that.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

The ocean is a wilderness with wild things in it.

14 ( +15 / -2 )

This is why deep waters scare the crap out of me. Anything can come at you from any direction in complete silence...

11 ( +13 / -2 )

What a terrible way to go, if I saw a shark near me out surfing I'd probably die of shock

5 ( +5 / -0 )

There was a documentary filmed near the Farallon Islands off San Francisco, where great whites kept shooting up and biting at surfboards the filmers towed on the surface, because from down there where the sharks are, the boards look like seals, i.e., lunch.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

RIP. Terrible way to go.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

But it seems like he died doing what he loved most. Perhaps that's not the worst way to go out.

15 ( +16 / -1 )

if I saw a shark near me out surfing I'd probably die of shock

That is why the scuba diving instructor didn't tell me about the shark coming up behind me on my first longish dive, but he told me later.

It was a white-tipped reef shark, not big, plenty on the Great Barrier Reef, not a 4m monster like down in southern waters (or northern in Northern Hemisphere). Anyway, in Northern Australia it is not the sharks - its the box jellies and Irukandji jellies, not to mention the 4-5-6 meter crocs out in the ocean in the dry season on land

Bull sharks scare me - 3 meters or so, often in murky water and with very high tolerance of fresh water.

Still, about 20 to 50 times more people die from drowning. But drowning is not the stuff to make scary movies about.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

What was he thinking?

Looks like the beach nearby was patrolled and there were other surfers nearby. He lived there too, not a tourist.

Also,

But experts say it’s unlikely to be the same shark. (referring to the other, also rare, shark attack).

It's called bad luck. Considering how many people go to the beaches in Australia on any given day, the odds are very low, but shlt happens.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Terrible news.

But sometimes I wonder how many sharks are killed by humans, as opposed to how many humans are killed by sharks.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wow! RIP!

If I ever get to Australia one day I am not sure I will ever try swimming in salt or fresh water

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

The surf is most definitely up, dude

0 ( +0 / -0 )

He was laying on the board, not sitting. Probably paddling. Most people when they padle though keep their legs up. If he was sitting, his legs would have been dangling and he would have been in the middle of the board, not on the end.

Surfing is great. Can happen to any of us.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

"This is why deep waters scare the crap out of me. Anything can come at you from any direction in complete silence..."

Sounds like the premise for a good movie script! Maybe I should start writing!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Horrible! RIP to this guy.

papigiulio: "What was he thinking? Lightning never strikes the same place twice?"

Well, that's kind of unfair. If you read the story closely there were two friends alongside him, also doing the same thing, and I'm guessing a whole lot of other people out on the beach since it wasn't closed until after the attack. The only solution that would bring about a stronger chance of this not happening would be to close all the beaches permanently, but that'll never happen, nor should it. That said, people just have to watch out and avoid the sharks as best as possible, or avoid going too far into the water. But then even in shallow water in Aus and elsewhere you get jellyfish and other things that can cause harm or even be fatal.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

every now and then nature turns the tide, normally its shark bento, today it was the shark's turn who got catch of the day..

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Yep! Australia is the shark attack capital of the world. The beaches off Newcastle (near Sydney) were closed for nearly two weeks last month due to a 4-5m great white lurking around the coastline. Australia has very strict oceanic conservation laws, which keeps ocean and lake environments healthy. A healthy environment means predators. I guess that's the dark side of conservation. Lake Macquarie (near Newcastle) is being frequented by a 3-4m great white shark. It's been living in the lake for nearly a year. I grew up surfin the East and South coasts of Australia. I've seen quite a few sharks over the years. I had a 4m great white swim right underneath me surfing Phillip Island near Melbourne. That was the luckiest day of my life. The shark knew I was there long before I saw him. That's the rule with sharks! If you see one you are lucky cos it's the one you don't see that is gonna end you. I feel sorry for this fella, but shark attacks are becoming very common in Australian waters in recent years and nobody is yet to develop an effective shark deterrent. I read a test done on the electronic deterrents the other day and they couldn't prove they work. I Saw another one the other week where a surfer had his board and wetsuit striped in black and white to change his profile in the water. Again, this is unproven. Hopefully, within the next few years someone will develop an effective shark deterrent for surfers and other other watersports.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

RIP, and like another poster noted, while it is not fair to assume it was such, I too would like to think that he died doing what he loved.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

As someone above noted, the ocean is a wilderness and there's not really much you can do other than stay out of the water. But these incidents are so rare, and if you love swimming and surfing you have to take the risk. And I love to be in the ocean myself. It's just that when something like this does happen, it's one of those spectacularly horrifying things that fire the imagination.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Just nature doing what nature does. Says a lot for Aussies to understand/accept this and not freak out with every shark, croc, etc. attack. But this must have been one large shark seeing as it was big enough to get its mouth around both legs and the board.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

not far from the area where another surfer was mauled by a shark a day earlier,

What was he thinking? Lightning never strikes the same place twice?

AP reported it as 'not far' however it was about 25 km away.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

And kudos to the two surfers who selflessly paddled out to help try to save his life, which is not mentioned in the JT article but in other papers.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Rest in Peace

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"But these incidents are so rare..."

14 fatalities in Australia in a little over 4 years.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

He was 10m off the beach..... http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/brisbane-fast-first-fatal-shark-attack-near-ballina-and-the-latest-breaking-news-february-9/story-fnqcjzme-1227174496917

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Dangling feet and the shadow of the board and he is a resting 'seal'. We get a few fatals every year but the beast that kills the most with equally horrific injures has four wheels and a human behind a fifth. Don't blame the sharks. They are just doing what comes naturally.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

The song comes to my head... "come to Australia, you might accidentally get killed".

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

When are they going to invent tricorders that surfers/swimmers can strap on and be aware of any sharks within striking distance?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Maybe the Sharke was a Muslim killing non Muslims. It makes enough sence as beheadding or immulatinon.

Moderator: Please find another discussion board.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

It aint tragic dying doing something you love so much. Surfers are pretty passionate about their way of life. & mother nature always lets us know how small we really are from time to time.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

USNinJapan2

Was thinking exactly the same thing. Easy enough to understand one leg being bitten off but both legs? It must have had a very large mouth and the article quotes the mayor of the town as saying, "...both legs were gone", which implies that the poor guy's legs were bitten off above the knee even. Must have been a pretty big shark.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

To answer the both legs question: He was obviously laying down on his board! He looked like a big mackerel and the great bite shark just came up being him and chomped off the tail. It's a very natural attack! Great bite sharks have different hunting techniques for different areas and different prey. They hit seals from underneath (like the footage on the National Geographic channel) and they hit fish from behind at full speed to bite off their tail and debilitate them. This poor guy was probably just setting up to paddle into a wave when this monster thought he was a fish.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

But it seems like he died doing what he loved most. Perhaps that's not the worst way to go out.

Dying in a huge wave might substantiate this assumption. Dying eated by a shark, while paddling and waiting for a wave...!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I use wooden lures that are 11 inches which I cast from the beach and retrieve through the waves to catch fish that are 15 to 40 inches in length. Surfboards are literally shark lures.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

When are they going to invent tricorders that surfers/swimmers can strap on and be aware of any sharks within striking distance?

Seems to me if they DID invent one, you'd find out there are a lot more sharks around than you realize. It's just that most of them aren't hungry at that moment, or you seem a bit large for their tastes.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"But these incidents are so rare..."

14 fatalities in Australia in a little over 4 years.

Out of how many millions of people swam during those four years? You have a greater chance of being injured sitting on the toilet than you do of being injured by a shark. Larger sample please, and try again.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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