Swimmer Bitten by Silky Shark

Cristina Ojeda-Thies was bitten by what is believed to have been a silky shark off Arinaga Beach in Gran Canaria. The island is part of the Spanish archipelago of the Canary Islands.

Cristina_Ojeda_Thies_Gran_Canaria_shark_bite_2The 38-year-old was swimming with her family after Christmas day dinner when she felt a tug at her arm.

“I noticed something pulling at my left arm but I didn’t pay any attention because it felt like a dog biting you when it’s playing.

“I returned to the shoreline swimming crawl and I felt another pull again, more intense this time.

“Half a second later I felt something grabbing hold of me, I turned round and I saw it pulling at me. It was a fish. I hit it with my right hand and I saw the shark’s fins as it swam off.

“Everything happened very quickly, in seconds. Although it wasn’t a painful attack, I didn’t realise how serious it was till I got out of the water.

“As I turned round I saw it was a big greyish-brown fish and when I hit it I noticed it had hard, rough skin.

“There are times when I’ve fallen off my bike or I’ve burnt myself cooking and it’s hurt me more.

“But it’s true it was something that frightened me. Thankfully I was able to react.

“I was still in the sea when I put my head under water to see if it was following me and look where I could escape to nearer the shoreline and I didn’t see it again.”She told the Daily Mirror 

Mrs. Ojeda-Thies received treatment at a local hospital and is projected to make a full recovery.


Based on her wounds, the shark was estimated to be around 6 1/2 feet (2m) long.

Silky sharks swallow their prey whole and are normally not found around the island at this time of year.

The location has been marked on the 2015 shark attack bites tracking map.

All photos courtesy of Cristina Ojeda-Thies

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