Fri, 29 January 2010

A surfer fought off a shark with his fists in waters east of Bundaberg, just north of Noosa Heards in Queensland, Australia.

According to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, a woman who witnessed the attack, which happened late Thursday at Archie's Beach, said the water around the surfer began to bubble before he started punching the sea.

The man, who had been surfing with his son, returned to the beach unharmed and told lifeguards his board had been hit by a "large grey shape".

Queensland Shark Control Program manager Tony Ham says it was most likely a tiger shark.

"We catch quite a number of tiger sharks off Bundaberg each year," Mr Ham said. "At the end of the day the reality is we know they're present all year round. I guess we're warning people to be proactive and be a bit clever."

Mr Ham says the attack may be linked to the region's turtle breeding season. He says nesting turtles along the coast provide a feeding ground for lurking tiger sharks, and it is likely the shark mistook the man for a turtle.

"Sharks, particularly tiger sharks, are one of their natural predators so they're out there having an opportunistic feed," he said.

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