Shark Attacks in Australia
Sharks That Attack
There are four hundred species of sharks worldwide, twelve of which are known to cause unprovoked attacks. All twelve are in Australian waters. However, of these twelve, four are responsible for the majority of fatal attacks.
The bull shark
The tiger shark
The oceanic whitetip shark
The great white shark
When Do Attacks Happen?
Though shark attacks happen year-round, studies have found that most shark attacks occur during the warmer seasons. In Australia, this is between November and April.
How to Decrease Your Chances of Becoming a Shark Attack Victim
The Australian Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts recommends the following:
Don’t swim far from the shore.
Don’t swim at the mouth of a river or on drop-offs to deeper water.
Avoid swimming in dirty water.
Don’t swim alone.
Don’t swim with domestic animals.
Don’t swim near people who are fishing.
Avoid swimming at dusk or nighttime.
If you notice schools of fish behaving erratically or in a large group, leave the water.
Limit your ocean swimming to beaches that utilise shark netting.
According to Time Magazine, shark netting has reduced the number of deaths from shark attacks on beaches significantly. The practice started in 1937 in New South Wales, and since then, the number of deaths caused by shark attacks on netted beaches has only been one. In Queensland, there hasn’t been a single fatal attack since they introduced nets in the 1960s.