An Australian surfer was thrown from her board in what may have been an attack by a large shark, recording the terrifying incident that left her in the water next to a longboard that had been sheared into two pieces.
Dianne Ellis was paddling with dolphins in New South Wales’ Byron Bay, according to Grind TV, when the attack occurred. While recording the animals, Ellis ventured far offshore, and unaware of the presence of a shark, she realized that the dolphins had scattered with her approach.
“I thought, ‘Oh, they don’t want to be filmed; they’re being a bit antisocial,'” she recalled. “So I paddled back to shore and went to catch a couple of waves, and it wasn’t long before they came back in. So I paddled back out so I’d be in their path, and I saw them coming. I was filming as they came, then I saw a couple come very quickly under my board, but then something suddenly hit me.”
Ellis was thrown into the sea during the attack, and though her camera kept filming, it failed to capture the culprit. At first believing that she had been struck by a dolphin, Ellis was helped to shore by a nearby stand-up paddler, who asserted that he spied a shark nearby directly after the attack. Upon reaching land, Ellis discerned damage to her surfboard’s fins, along with marks that appeared to be caused by shark’s teeth.
“I showed a friend who said there were a couple of teeth marks on it and said I should take it to Fisheries to have a look at it,” Ellis said. “I don’t think there would be teeth marks if it was a dolphin.”
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Though Ellis admits she has experienced several run-ins with sharks in the past, according to the Daily Examiner, she notes that none of those interactions ever resulted in her being thrown from her board. Despite the possibility that she may have been attacked by a shark, Ellis said that she was more concerned with the damage to the longboard she was using, which belonged to her daughter.
The attack occurred in Byron Bay, the same area in which a British man was killed by a great white shark last September, as the Inquisitr previously reported. More recently, several large sharks closed beaches in Newcastle for over a week, and were photographed preying on dolphins. Several of the cetaceans, exhibiting bite marks consistent with a shark attack, washed ashore on local beaches.
Though it is impossible to say for sure if a shark was responsible for the incident that Ellis faced, the violent nature of the attack, combined with the fact that a great white shark often strikes at its prey from below, means that she may be one extremely lucky surfer.
[Image via the ABC]