Shark lurking in Bay marina

A TWO metre rogue bull shark is on the prowl in the Great Sandy Straits Marina in Hervey Bay.

While it is not unusual for sharks to be occasionally sighted swimming around amongst the boats this particular shark has stayed around for almost a month.

Last week the bull shark came within a metre of a salvage diver who was undertaking an inspection of a yacht in a deep section of the marina.

The diver, Peter Flett (pictured), said he was under the hull in murky water when he suddenly noticed the shark swimming straight at him.

“He came to within a metre or so of me and then suddenly veered off,” he said.

“I was wearing an electronic shark shield and I’m sure that was the only reason he didn’t attack.

"I have been diving for more than 30 years and that’s the closest I have ever come to a shark and I’m not keen to have it happen again.”

Mr Flett has been working under boats in the marina for the past three years and despite the close call won’t be handing in his dive belt just yet.

“I’ve been back in since the incident, but I admit I have been a little wary.

"If I didn’t have the electronic shark shield there is no way I would be going back down until this bloke is caught,” he said.

Marina manager, Helen Fielding, sent out an e-mail to all of the marina boat owners warning them of the presence of the bull shark on the weekend.

“Some of the owners occasionally slip over the side of their boats and give them a clean and I suggested that may not be a clever thing to do at the moment,” she said.

“We also have a number of visiting yachts pulling in and you’ll see those people diving in for a quick swim.

"I’ll be warning them as well.”

Mrs Fielding contacted DERM to ask them what could be done and was shocked to hear that if the shark was caught and he was over one and a half metres he’d have to released back into the water.

“When I asked them what we could do I was told we needed to shepherd the shark out of the marina,” she said.

“I don’t know how you could do that, but if someone knows how to persuading a two metre shark to go away I’d love to hear from them.”

Reports from local restaurants at the marina say there has been a lot of surface fish activity around dusk.

“Fish are getting schooled up by something very big and we’re sure it’s the bull shark grabbing dinner,” Mrs Fielding said.

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