Does “don’t bite the hand that feeds you” apply to sharks? A veteran surfer at his local beach in Victoria, Australia is hailed as a hero after rescuing a stranded shark. The shark was stuck and flailing on the beach when Paul Myles did the unthinkable and carried it back to sea.
Hero Surfer Tried to Push the Stranded Shark With Surfboard But Ended Up Carrying It Like a Baby
Myles told ABC that he made the decision in a split second.
“I just thought I’d give it a chance, I wasn’t sure if it was just disorientated or sick or whatever,” he said.
Myles was surfing at Eastern View on Victoria’s Great Ocean Road, a spot he’d been frequenting for over 40 years when he saw the shark in distress. He said that he’d only ever seen a shark in the area once before.
“I once saw one off the rocks about 20 years ago but that’s enough I think,” he told ABC.
“I thought I’d get it out in the water a bit further out, see if it would swim out to sea but it didn’t seem too well,” he said.
After unsuccessfully using his surfboard to push the shark toward the water, Myles decided to pick it up. He said it weighed about 20 kg or 45 lbs.
Myles said he did it because he’s “a bit of a softie, really.”
Onlookers filmed the interaction as Myles carried the shark out into the waves. He noted that the shark was likely a blue shark, due to its “long pointy nose” and “blue color.”
The Aussie surfer also said he hoped he earned some “brownie points” in the future after rescuing the shark.
A Brief Profile on Blue Sharks
According to AmericanOceans.org, blue sharks are migratory and seek waters with higher oxygen concentrations. Although they typically remain further out to sea, climate change and oceanic changes have prompted them to seek shallower waters. The blue shark isn’t generally a threat to humans, with its diet consisting primarily of fish and squid. However, they do occasionally eat seals and there have been a few recorded human attacks.
Blue sharks typically live up to 15 years and get grow to 11 feet in length. Males generally range from 60 to 121 lbs while females average between 205 and 401 lbs. If Myles did indeed save a blue shark, it may have been quite young.