Dozens of sharks seen swimming off Florida coast

·2 min read
Dozens of sharks seen swimming off Florida coast

Summer temperatures are returning to North America and more people are making their way to the water, but before you dip your toes in, be aware of what can be lurking below.

Earlier this month, the aviation unit out of the Pasco Sheriff's Office in Florida posted a video of more than 50 sharks swimming near Anclote Sandbar and Anclote Island.

"While it's unknown what type of sharks these are, they are likely feeding on baitfish in the area. This happens annually and shark attacks are exceedingly rare for this area," said Public Information Manager Amanda Hunter.

"We advise that people give the sharks plenty of space and leave them alone. Enjoying their presence from a distance ensures that both our citizens and the sharks remain safe," said Hunter.

Pasco Sheriff's Office shared the video to alert residents of the presence of sharks and as a reminder to provide the sharks their space.


Click here to view the video

While there are sharks in some of Canada's waters, attacks are rare. In warmer parts of North America bites are on the rise after three years of decline. According to the Florida Museum, in 2021 there were 73 unprovoked bites and 39 provoked bites.

Approximately 42 per cent of shark bites in North America occurred in the United States. The cause for low shark bite numbers in 2020 is believed to be the pandemic, as fewer people were frequenting the water.

Blacktip sharks that live in Florida's warm waters are responsible for most bites.

Blacktip sharks prefer to hunt small fishes and usually are timid. However, they hunt in shallow water (less than 100 feet deep), the same water most swimmers and surfers frequent. According to the Florida Museum they often mistake a swimmer or a surfer's arm or leg for prey.

Thumbnail Credit: Pasco Sheriff's Office

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