WA shark examination: Bite marks indicate attack involved a great white shark

Flag_WA2Media Release

Department of Fisheries, Western Australia

04. October  2014


Examinations of white sharks complete

Department of Fisheries scientists have completed examinations of two white sharks captured after a serious incident at Wylie Bay, east of Esperance on Thursday.

The two sharks were transported to Perth for further examination by the Department’s experts.

“Based on the examinations, we are unable to confirm whether either shark was involved in the incident,” Department of Fisheries’ principal shark scientist Dr Rory McAuley said.

Dr McAuley said while the results were inconclusive, it was not uncommon for sharks to disgorge their stomach contents when they were caught.

“We have also examined the surfboard used by the man involved in the incident on Thursday and indications are that a white shark was responsible for the injuries he received.

“Jaw measurements will also help with future bite investigations.  The first white shark caught is 3.46 metres long; the second white shark is 2.68 metres in length.

“Our team has since collected samples from both sharks including sections of vertebrae, which will assist us with our research work.

 “Now that our investigation is complete, material will be made available to other research institutions.”

Beaches in the Wylie Bay area have now been reopened after being closed since about lunchtime on Thursday and since the two white sharks were captured, there have been no new sightings or reports in area.

Department of Fisheries and Department of Transport vessels have been on the water and will remain on patrol in the vicinity.  Advice is that water users and campers in the area should:

  • Keep informed of the latest detection and sighting information by checking the Surf Life Saving Twitter – twitter.com/SLSWA.
  • Report any shark sightings to Water Police on 9442 8600.
  • Adhere to any beach closures advised by rangers from the Shire of Esperance or Department of Parks and Wildlife, or volunteer club members from Surf Life Saving WA.

Source: Government of Western Australia


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