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Locals issued warning over fears of 'disorientated' shark swimming in UK river

Locals issued warning over fears of 'disorientated' shark swimming in UK river

Experts have urged residents to 'give it a wide berth'

A blue shark has been spotted swimming near to the shore of a river in Cornwall, with experts urging people to ‘give it a wide berth’ amid concerns for its health. You can see footage here:

The shark was seen travelling down the River Fal on Wednesday afternoon, with footage showing a woman stepping in and attempting to gently move it back towards the river bank. 

Witness Harry Gooby told BBC Radio Cornwall: "Silently, slowly and elegantly this blue shark just sort of swam by. 

"I thought he was in a bit of trouble, but he was fantastic. I was speaking to a fisherman down there and the fisherman was saying that, actually, he didn't think he was in trouble."

However, a wildlife expert has said the fact it's so close to land is a ‘real worry’. 

Dan Jarvis, of the charity British Divers Marine Life Rescue, told the BBC: "This is a real worry for us because they don't normally come up so close to beaches like this.

The blue shark was seen travelling down the River Fal on Wednesday afternoon.
BPM Media

"Our worry is that it is injured or unwell and might need some medical attention.

"Our advice is to ignore it and give it a wide berth. It could be disorientated and it's best for our team to monitor it, to give it the space and time to do what it wants.

“It could have just come for a look and will swim off when it's happy to, but if it's unwell we don't want to cause it any more stress by people getting into the water and interfering with it."

Blue sharks are not uncommon in UK waters from June to October, and they mainly feed on fish and squid, usually growing to between ten and 13ft-long. 

Last month, a woman was reportedly attacked by a shark off the coast if Cornwall in the 'first incident of its kind in 175 years'.

HM Coastguard reported that the female swimmer, who had been on a snorkelling trip in Penzance harbour in Cornwall, suffered from a suspected shark bite on her leg.

If this is confirmed, it will be mark the first unprovoked shark attack in British waters since 1847. 

Blue sharks aren't uncommon to UK waters during certain times of the year.
Nature Picture Library / Alamy Stock Photo

Paramedics rushed to the scene, which unfolded last Thursday (28 July), to tend to the woman.

A spokesperson said: "HM Coastguard sent Penzance Coastguard Rescue Team to meet a snorkeler who suffered a suspected shark bite. 

"The coastguard was notified just before 12.30pm on Thursday (July 28). It is believed the swimmer suffered a leg injury. 

"The coastguard team met the casualty at Penzance harbour to assist with passing them into the care of the ambulance service."

Featured Image Credit: BPM Media

Topics: UK News, Animals

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