Why New Smyrna Beach Has So Many Shark Attacks

A 28-year-old Daytona Beach man has become the third person to be bitten by a shark in Volusia County this year. Volusia County is the so-called shark bite capital of the world because it records more shark bites than anywhere else. Fortunately, injuries are rarely life threatening. The surfer was at the entrance to New Smyrna Beach, where the majority of shark bites in that area occur. The entrance happens to be an assortment of bait fish which attracts sharks. It also has some of the best waves in the Southeast which attract surfers. “He had jumped off his surfboard onto the shark. The shark bit essentially as a defensive mechanism,” said Volusia County Deputy Beach Safety Chief Aaron Jenkins. Sunday’s shark bite was fairly minor, according to beach safety. The victim got off his surfboard and stepped on a shark which bit him on the foot. Beach safety officials say a friend drove him to hospital where he got a few stitches, but otherwise all is well. “There are a lot of baitfish. There are many unstable currents. Creates cloudy water. You mix those two up with sharks and surfers, you know, those accidents happen,” Jenkins said. The first two shark bites of the year occurred in March. One of the victims, Eric String, was bitten on the right foot, also at the entrance. The close encounter left him with jagged teeth marks top and bottom. Sharks are often in fairly shallow water where swimmers and surfers play. Yet despite this, bathers, especially surfers, regularly say the reward far outweighs the risk. “We come here a lot and if you think about it you don’t really have fun so we go out no matter what,” one netizen said. There were 16 recorded shark bites in Volusia County in 2021, so three this year, by comparison, doesn’t seem like a lot. However, the majority of bites occur between July and October.

A 28-year-old Daytona Beach man has become the third person to be bitten by a shark in Volusia County this year.

Volusia County is the so-called shark bite capital of the world because it records more shark bites than anywhere else. Fortunately, injuries are rarely life threatening.

The surfer was at the entrance to New Smyrna Beach, where the majority of shark bites in that area occur. The entrance happens to be an assortment of bait fish which attracts sharks. It also has some of the best waves in the Southeast which attract surfers.

“He had jumped off his surfboard onto the shark. The shark bit basically as a defensive mechanism,” said Volusia County Deputy Beach Safety Chief Aaron Jenkins.

Sunday’s shark bite was fairly minor, according to beach safety. The victim got off his surfboard and stepped on a shark which bit him on the foot. Beach safety officials said a friend took him to hospital where he suffered a few stitches but was fine.

“There are a lot of baitfish. There are many unstable currents. Creates cloudy water. You mix those two with sharks and surfers, you know, those accidents happen,” Jenkins said.

The first two shark bites of the year occurred in March. One of the victims, Eric String, was bitten on the right foot, also at the entrance. The close encounter left him with jagged teeth marks top and bottom. Sharks are often in fairly shallow water where swimmers and surfers play. Yet despite this, beachgoers, especially surfers, regularly say the reward far outweighs the risk.

“We come here a lot and if you think about it you don’t really have fun so we go out no matter what,” one netizen said.

There were 16 recorded shark bites in Volusia County in 2021, so three this year, by comparison, doesn’t seem like a lot. However, the majority of bites occur between July and October.

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