Shark attacks are rare, but they can happen

Shark attacks are rare, but they can happen and especially in Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean, cases are reported from time to time. It can also happen in Florida, experts in the United States believe that sharks for example attack rather on Sundays with a new moon, in shallow waters, swimmers with a black and white or yellow and white swimsuit. This comes from Gorge Burgess of the University of Florida.

Of course, the attacks are more likely to occur in August, but this seems normal since this is the month when the majority of tourists come to surf, so there are many more people in the sea than during the rest of the year. It should be noted that most of the time it is not attacks but just bites from sharks.

Scientists believe that there are several reasons for the increase in the number of attacks: the increase in boating activities, the concentrated effects of urbanization (waste, etc.), a greater presence of bulldog sharks, aquaculture activity that concentrates fish in the same places.

According to Christophe Perry, shark specialist: Sharks in general are a threatened species due to industrial overfishing of pelagic species (nets, seines) where they end up caught in nets, thrown back into the sea, dead, and by a fishery that targets them specifically for their fins. These fisheries have been more and more active for the last 20 to 25 years. We therefore have a paradox between a dwindling shark population and a significant increase in risks in this area.

Worldwide, about 100 shark attacks and 40 deaths are recorded each year, while humans kill an average of 100 million sharks per year. From 1980 to 1990 there were about 42 attacks per year, from 1990 to 2000 about 56, from 2000 to 2010 more than 97.

Some advice for surfers and swimmers who go to Reunion Island: avoid swimming and surfing in isolated and uncrowded areas. Avoid swimming at night, early in the morning and late in the evening because these are the times when many species hunt in the sea. Avoid external coral reefs. Do not swim near a port or a sewage treatment plant. Avoid muddy waters as sharks like to surprise their prey. Avoid swimming after a storm or heavy rain. Never swim with a skin wound or during menstruation for women. 

You have very little chance of being attacked, even if 75% of the attacks concern surfers, windsurfers, and swimmers. Beware of these monsters of the ocean and consider taking precautions to reduce your chances of being attacked, even if it is only a bite, you must avoid an encounter with a great white, tiger or bulldog shark.