Shark Files: Shark Found Near Death in Florida Swimming Pool
A 5-foot-long blacktip was found floundering in the water, left there by two strangers.
Nicole Bonk could be forgiven for thinking she was at an aquarium when she approached the swimming pool of a Florida condominium.
She looked down and saw a 5-foot blacktip shark floundering in the pool.
Bonk, who was visiting friends at the Mariners Cay condo in Hypoluxo, told the Sun Sentinel newspaper that she saw two boys dump the shark in the pool earlier this month, with hooks still in its mouth. Figuring it might die in the pool, she and her husband pulled the shark out of the pool and carried to the Intracoastal Waterway.
Once there, her husband held the shark by the tail to get some of the chlorinated pool water out and then released it.
"We tried to revive him but he mostly likely did not live," Bonk told the newspaper. "He was barely moving after the trauma. We did our best to try to save this creature."
Bonk reported incident to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, which told the newspaper that it was investigating the incident. The commission offices were closed Monday and no one could be reached at the Mariners Cay condo.
The blacktip shark, which reaches up to 6-feet and is named for the black tip on its fins, is common in Florida's coastal waters, bays and estuaries, according to the commission's website. Active and fast moving these sharks often forms large schools during annual migration times when they head southward into deeper coastal waters during winter months.
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This blacktip shark is the type found in Nicole Bonk's swimming pool.
Great white sharks are the biggest predatory fish in the world. And despite their mass, they can travel at ridiculous speeds, at over 35 miles per hour, to track their prey. Marine biologist Joe Butler traveled with two friends off Hans Bay, South Africa, in hopes of seeing some great whites. Which they did. See more of Butler's story on a
on the Seeker Network.
"In order to bring them in closer, to give everyone a good look, the crew would employ a tuna head on the end of a long rope and drag it out of the way before the shark had a chance to grab it," Butler said.
This amazing photo, taken from inside the cage, shows the shark grabbing the bait before anyone had a chance to react. "There's actually quite a sobering moment when you realize that proverbially you're the fish out of water, this is their home, and you’re not actually supposed to be there," Butler said.
"I think a lot people have this image in their head of them being sort of an idealistic predator, but in reality these animals are still quite vulnerable. However, seeing them in their natural environment is something I would recommend to anyone in a heartbeat." Above, Butler (left), prepares to cage dive with his two classmates.