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May 1999 Vol. 14, No. 5   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Surfers are Better

from the May, 1999 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

If youre worried about shark attacks, keep in mind that 70 percent are directed toward surfers, with divers and swimmers accounting for 15 percent each. At least, thats what happened in 1998, says George Burgess of the International Shark Attack File at the University of Florida in Gainesville. Last years 49 shark attacks were down from 57 in 1997 and the all-time high of 72 in 1995. More than half of last years attacks, 25, occurred in North America, with 75 percent of those in Florida. There were 18 attacks in Africa, four in South America, one in Australia and one in the South Pacific. Six were fatal. A Florida fatality occurred on Nov. 21, when a six-foot tiger shark grabbed a 9-year-old boy off Vero Beach and pulled him under. The report can be found on website www.flmnh.ufl.edu/fish/research/.

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