A 25-year-old former boxer landed multiple punches on a hark that bit into his surfboard in Hawaii Sunday.
Jeff Horton was with ten other surfers off of Kauai when the incident occurred. He initially spotted a fin in the water, and about 20 minutes later, a dark shape appeared in the water. Horton initially figured it was a stingray as it approached – the mass was black on top, white on the bottom.
It turned out to be a shark, and Horton quickly pulled his leg out of the water. “It came flying straight toward me,” Horton said. The shark then got a mouthful of the board, knocking Horton into the water in the process.
The surfer then grabbed onto one of the shark’s fins, and began beating it over the head with his free fist, as hard as he could. Horton guesses he got about 8 good blows in. “I finally got one nice punch into the eye,” Horton said. “I put some really good hits on it, for sure.”
Ideally, the finest way to ward off a shark attack is to leave the water. When this isn’t possible, playing dead, like one might do with a Grizzly bear, isn’t going to cut it. What Horton did was the right course of action, according to The Florida Museum of Natural History.
If a shark is trying to eat you, the best thing to do is attack its nose, eyes or gills, which are all very sensitive areas on the fish. Though, one must be sure to remember that a shark can’t actually be frightened; it’s a killing machine running on basic instinct, and lacks a limbic system. Essentially, after beating a shark, be sure to get away from it, because there’s a large chance it might return.
After Horton poked the shark in the eye, it took off for a bit, allowing him time to get back onto his board. Along with another surfer, Horton caught a wave and headed to shore. The shark briefly followed, but then lost interest. Upon making it to the beach, a tourist gave Horton $50 to go buy some booze, and his only injuries were scrapes made by the rough skin of the shark.
His 7-foot board, which Horton plans to mount on his wall, has teeth marks in it. Horton was back in the water surfer at another beach the next day.
Image via Wikimedia Commons.