Swimmers enjoying the long Independence Day weekend in Florida were stunned when a seemingly large shark was spotted swimming in shallow water not far away.
The shark was reportedly spotted on Monday, July 3, at Navarre Beach up in the Florida Panhandle, not far from Pensacola Beach. Navarre Beach is about 6 ½ hours from Orlando.
Cristy Mccallie Cox posted the video on her Facebook page, which showed several people in the water as the shark's dorsal fin eerily bobs in and out of the water.
"Get out of the water!" one person shouts in the video, as others encourage the others to get away from the shark. "Good god, people" someone else shouts.
"Hurry, hurry," another person says.
Moments later, the sharks fin goes underwater and out of view.
"Where did it go? Where did it go? There's somebody still out there," someone is heard saying in the video as more people make their way out of the ocean and onto the beach. Others stood on the beach eagerly looking out at the ocean.
"That sucker came close!" another person could be heard.
FOX 35 could not immediately verify what type of shark it was. However, sharks are common near show along Florida's coasts and in bays. The FWC said sharks typically feed on other fish and do not necessarily see humans as a food source so most bites are considered to be "cases of mistaken identity."
However, bites do happen.
A 12-year-old girl visiting from Pennsylvania was bit by a shark while swimming at Cocoa Beach, her family told FOX 35. They were in town for a gymnastics competition.
"Right when I got out of the water, I just started screaming because I knew that it wasn't good," Magnolia Woodhead said. She received 50 stiches and doctors reportedly told them they believe the girl was bit twice because of the number of punctures in her leg.
Last week, a fisherman was washing his hands when he was reportedly bitten by shark at Florida Everglades National Park, according to the National Park Service. That man was taken to the hospital for treatment.
In June, people enjoying the weekend at Robinson Island near the Florida-Alabama border had quite the sight as a group of hammerhead sharks began to swim near their boats in the Gulf of Mexico.
Despite being considered rare, there are some tips that people should keep in mind when swimming in the ocean to reduce the risk of a shark encounter:
- Always stay in groups
- Avoid wearing shiny jewerly
- Always swim or wade near a staffed lifeguard
- Do not enter the water if bleeding from an open wound
- Be extra cautious when swimming in murky or cloudy water