Man pulls aggressive 8-foot bull shark onto Indian Shores beach
INDIAN SHORES —
A 21-year-old Pinellas County fisherman said he caught an 8-foot bull shark off Indian Shores beach on Monday and took a cell phone picture holding open its jaws as proof.
“The mouth on that shark was pretty intimidating,” Jesse Wright said. “It had some pretty bad looking teeth.”
Wright said he was fishing near near Park Boulevard and Gulf Boulevard around 7:30 p.m. when the shark took his bait.
“We paddle our kayaks out to the buoys, drop our baits, paddle back in,” he said. “We weren’t expecting anything that big.”
Wright works at Betts Fishing Center in Largo and said it took about 30 minutes to land the dangerous shark.
“Most likely, it was a female,” he said. “Either she had pups in her or she just ate a lot. She was pretty big and broad.”
The fisherman said he usually catches black tip or bonnethead sharks. This is his first bull shark and it’s also the biggest he’s ever landed.
“All of our sharks that we catch we do release,” he said. “We bring it in as quick as possible, get the hooks out of its mouth and wade back into the water and release it.”
Wright said the bull shark gave him quite a scare when they let it loose.
“We were in about 3 feet of water and it did come back to try and get us,” he said. “We did keep our distance because if you get one bite it’s not going to be pretty at all.”
Sharks are common in Tampa Bay waters and Wright said they become more abundant in the summer.
“The tarpon usually migrate up here into the Pinellas County area,” he said. “Usually when those Tarpon come in, it’s going to bring the bull sharks and the hammerheads.”