Shark leaves tooth in man's leg after attack in Sydney
An Australian man was left with a razor-sharp sharks tooth embedded in his leg after being attacked while swimming at a popular beach in Sydney today.
Paul Welsh, 46, was surfing with his 10-year-old son in the shallows at Mona Vale beach in northern Sydney when he was bitten on the leg by a 5ft wobbegong shark.
Mr Welsh received cuts to his leg as the shark tried to drag him out to sea. He managed to hold on to some rocks and eventually the shark let go.
I was pushing my son on to waves and it just belted me from behind, Mr Welsh told a local newspaper. I grabbed on to the pinnacle of a rock and held on as it tried to drag me out... and I won.
Mr Welsh struggled to the beach where locals helped dress his bleeding leg. He was treated at hospital but released after a couple of hours.
Michael Brown, who works for the local surf patrol, was also swimming with his son about 100ft (30m) in front of Mr Welsh and witnessed the mauling. He said he saw the shark come up from underneath Mr Welsh in what he described as a surreal attack.
About 30-odd metres behind us, we turned around and saw a whole lot of thrashing in the water, Mr Brown said.
This shark has come in from underneath the guy. It's launched straight up into him, knocked him out of the water and then latched on to his leg.
Luckily, he had a chance to grab on to a rock and the shark's actually thrashing, trying to drag him back into the water.
Local Surf Life Saving Club members immediately closed the beach, while water police began searching for the shark. A rescue helicopter also conducted an aerial patrol, but the shark was not found.
The tooth fragment left in Mr Welshs leg was later tested by authorities and confirmed to be from a bottom-dwelling wobbegong, or carpet shark.
There have been numerous shark attacks around Australia in recent years, and while some have been serious with victims losing limbs, they are rarely fatal.
In February last year Glenn Orgias was attacked by an 8ft great white at Sydneys Bondi, the first shark attack at Australias most famous beach in 80 years. The 33-year-old lost his left hand as a result of the attack, but has since returned to the water.
A day earlier, Paul de Gelder, a navy clearance diver, lost an arm and a leg after being mauled by what was thought to have been a bull shark while conducting an underwater exercise in Sydney harbour.
The last fatal attack occurred in Western Australia in December, 2008, when Brian Guest, 51, disappeared while snorkeling with his son about 100ft off a beach on the south coast.
A two-day search by air and sea failed to find any trace of Mr Guest, who was thought to have been taken by a 14ft-long great white shark which was seen in the water when the banker went missing.
That's what I love about the Internet, the ability to access world wide news at your fingertips. I really do learn something new every day.
How many knew this was about a shark before opening it?
Speaking of it, I think Garrison Keillor smoked too much from the Lake Wobebong.