New Smyrna Beach
Sharks patrolling the waters off the Florida coast is not an uncommon sight but seeing a shark jump a surfer is a first for an Orlando photographer who was filming an action video of another surfer when he heard a voice exclaim "Dude, did you see that?"
Jacob Langston told the Orlando Sentinel he didn't know until later, when back at his job editing the video, that he had filmed a bizarre scene on his afternoon at the ocean. "It was then he realized he had captured the awesome moment in the background," he said.
Langston was filming the surfer in the foreground at New Smyrna Beach and ended up with a once in a lifetime video clip of the jumping shark, a four foot Spinner, according to the videographer.
Sharks are common in Florida in the Atlantic Ocean, and the in the Gulf of Mexico, as seen on this map of unprovoked shark attacks in the state. The Florida Museum of Natural History says there is on average 50 to 70 shark attacks per year worldwide, with approximately 10 fatalities resulting from shark bites.
Last year at New Smyrna Beach a swimmer reports she was lifted out of the water by a shark that swam underneath her. Judy Fischman, 58, told the Orlando Sentinel she "she was facing the back of the fish" when it happened. "I saw what definitely was a shark tail, and that tail was attached to a fish at least 8 feet long." Witnesses at Bethune Park who saw the encounter confirmed her shark report. Fischman claimed she saw four sharks total when the shark lifted her into the air.
At Ormond Beach in Volusia County, Florida, called the "shark bite capital of the world because of the frequency of shark incidents," a 19-year-old teenager wasn't as lucky as Fischman, who emerged from the water uninjured. The young man said he was wading in the water when a shark attacked him, biting him in the calf, according to police officers investigating the incident.
Florida shark attacks involving surfers are not uncommon. Sharks see the dangling legs and arms and mistake them for fish. The Florida Natural History Museum says if you see a shark, avoid any sudden movements, and swim away slowly, do not harass sharks or attempt to approach them, always stay in groups, don't enter the water if you are bleeding, avoid wearing shiny jewelry or entering murky waters, refrain from excessive splashing and stay out of the water if you see schools of bait-fish, which sharks follow when feeding.