Another man has been bitten by a shark in the same location where another surfer was bitten four months ago and not far from where a Japanese surfer died after being attacked earlier this year.
Sam Morgan, 20, was surfing alone at Lighthouse Beach, Ballina’s main surf beach, around 6.25pm on Tuesday when he suffered a large bite to his left thigh.
Authorities believe Morgan may have been bitten by a bull shark that was spotted near the mouth of the Richmond River, which flows through Ballina, earlier in the day.
Passersby heard Morgan scream. He was able to get out of the water unaided and received first aid until ambulance officers arrived.
He was taken to Lismore Base Hospital with serious injuries but is in a stable condition.
The beach has been closed for a minimum of 24 hours.
In July, a bodyboarder was bitten at the same spot, 20 minutes south of Byron Bay. It’s one of a series of attacks in the region this year which led the NSW government to announce a $250,000 research program, including tagging and tracking. In September experts gathered in Sydney for a “shark summit to methods for deterring further attacks. NSW premier Mike Baird has ruled out culling as an option.
The department of primary industries, which is leading the investigation into the habits of local sharks, had been trying to catch the animal and tag it, but failed.
In February at an adjacent beach, surfer Tadashi Nakahara, 41, died after a suspected great white shark attack.
The results of the NSW north coast study are due to be handed down in early 2016.
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