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Florida Continues Reign As World Leader In Shark Attacks

Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

A new report shows that Florida continues to be a world leader when it comes to shark attacks. 

Most of the attacks occurred in Volusia County. 

Florida’s shark attacks last year represented almost a third of all bites worldwide. Sixteen attacks were documented here — just two shy of the total in Australia. 

Gavin Naylor of the International Shark Attack File at the University of Florida says most of the attacks occurred off New Smyrna Beach, where the surf is good and bait fish plentiful. 

“You’ve got a combination of sharks looking for food, bait fish, and surfers looking for good waves. And one leads to the other, and a few people get their ankles nibbled by mistake.” 

Worldwide the number of shark attacks was down, but fatalities were up. The pandemic has prevented researchers from gathering information from health workers to help explain why. 

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Amy Green

About Amy Green

Reporter and Producer

Amy Green covers the environment and climate change at WMFE News. She is an award-winning journalist and author whose extensive reporting on the Everglades is featured in the book MOVING WATER, published by Johns Hopkins University Press, and podcast DRAINED, available wherever you get your podcasts. Amy’s ... Read Full Bio »