A nearly 6-foot long shark was caught a mile from where a man was bitten in the Neuse River last week.
The shark was caught by accident outside of Clubfoot Creek in the Neuse River July 28 by two unidentified men. They were fishing near Great Island and noticed thrashing when they began pulling in their shrimp net.
By the weight of the net and the heavy thrashing, the duo knew something big was in the net and headed into shore.
Once they made it to the bank, the found the 6-foot bull shark. After posing for photos, the shark was released back into the river.
Clubfoot Creek is about a mile from Cherry Branch, where a man was bitten July 22 by what was suspected to be a bull shark.
The unidentified man had been wakeboarding with his family and was in the water with his son around 6 p.m. The son felt something brush against him and minutes later, his father was bitten on the left calf.
They quickly climbed onto their boat and headed toward shore. The man’s daughter called 911 and was directed to the Ferry. Havelock EMS responded to the scene and took the man to CarolinaEast Medical Center in New Bern.
It is not uncommon to see female bull sharks traveling upriver to pup.
Bull sharks received their name due to their aggressive natures, and are one of the deadliest species of sharks. When they attack prey, they fight hard and often bite multiple times.
While shark attacks are rare, those from bull sharks can be severe.
One such attack occurred in the state in 2019.
On June 2 Paige Winter, 17, was wading in thigh-high water about 30 yards off Fort Macon State Park.
Around noon she felt something pulling on her leg and thought a family member was playing a prank. As she looked around, she didn’t see anyone near. She reached down and felt a shark attached to her leg.
She began fighting the shark, attempting to pry open its mouth with her hands. When her father heard her cries, he also fought the estimated 8-foot bull shark. The former Marine punched the shark until it finally released his daughter.
Paige was treated on the beach and taken to Vidant Medical Center by helicopter. The teen was unwavering in her support for marine life and continues to be an advocate for all marine creatures.
While the thought of shark attacks can be frightening, they are rare when you consider the number of people who enter the water daily.
To mitigate the chance of an attack, ocean users can avoid murky water, especially where fresh and saltwater meet.
Related: Shark Attack Prevention.
Avoid areas where people are fishing, and avoid swimming at dawn and dusk when sharks tend to be more active. Always swim where lifeguards are present and swim or dive in a group.