Some common sense tips to avoid attacks:
Read on for surfing safety…
#1: Avoid wearing bright, shiny items and colorful wet suits. Gold and silver sparkling in the oceans will catch the attention of a shark. They are also attracted to bright colors, so try to remove anything shiny before heading out into the waves and keep to dark wetsuits.
#2: Surf on clear days. Clear days helps the visibility for sharks – generally attacks are because you have been mistaken for a seal. The chance of this mistake happening on a dull, foggy or misty day is significantly higher.
#3: Surf in clear seas: Similar to #1 – dirty, murky seas are a shark’s paradise! Try to only surf in clear seas, where a shark should not mistake you to be a seal. Try also to avoid river mouths and sand bars, as these tend to have less clear water and are frequented by sharks.
#4: Leave the sea if you suspect your board is being bumped. Bumping of a board shows aggressive behavior by a shark. It is better to leave the water with all your limbs and work on your tan for a while until the shark has cleared the area
#5: Avoid areas rich in Shark food. Sharks generally feed on seals, sea lions and fish – if your realize that you are surfing in areas with a large population of these creatures, it may be safer for you to leave the water and find an alternate site.
#7: Avoid leaving blood trails. If you have a bad cut prior to going into the ocean, or get badly cut from your board, do not continue surfing until the blood has stopped running. Sharks are attracted by the smell of fresh blood.
#8: Avoid areas where birds are diving and fish jumping. Sharks are always on the look out for easy food. If there are a lot of fish, it is likely that there will be quite a few sharks. Avoid the area and move to another area until the fish move on.
#9. Avoid areas with anglers: Sharks tend to view anglers and fishing boats are areas of easy food sources, so avoid these type of areas.
#10: Avoid unnecessary splashing by you or your dog. Sharks are also attracted by hgh levels of splashing. Keep your movements to as low levels of splashing as possible. Surfing with dogs is great fun and a lot of surfers love taking their canine friends out on the board, but doggy paddle makes a lot of splashing and will help attract sharks. After all, your would be really upset if you endangered your pet.
Sources: Discovery UK.com and Florida Museum of Natural History
Photos courtesy of Wikipedia