Man, 64, attacked by shark while surfing in Australia

File photo:  A beach in South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula  (Getty Images)
File photo: A beach in South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula (Getty Images)

A man was flown to hospital for treatment after being bitten by a shark off the coast of South Australia.

The 64-year-old, who has not been named, was reportedly surfing in the Eyre Peninsula when he sustained a bite to his leg.

He had been about 200 metres offshore at Blacks, Elliston when the incident happened, surfing website Swellnet reported.

A picture shared by the website showed the man’s surfboard with large bite marks on it.

The man was able to swim back to the shore and presented to Elliston Hospital on Tuesday with a wound on his leg, Southern Australia Ambulance said.

His condition was described as stable and he was due to be flown to Royal Adelaide Hospital for further treatment.

It comes less than two weeks after a teenager died following a shark bite he sustained while also surfing in South Australia.

Khai Cowley, 15, was attacked by a suspected great white shark with his father off remote Ethel Beach on the Yorke Peninsula west of his hometown of Adelaide, authorities said.

His death was the third fatal shark attack in the waters off South Australia state in recent months.

Surfers died in shark attacks in remote parts of South Australia in May and October. Their bodies were never recovered.

South Australia Premier Peter Malinauskas said there have been 11 fatal shark attacks in the state’s waters since 2000.

The fact that three of those fatalities occurred since May is “startling and is of concern,” he told Nine Network television Friday.

Malinauskas said there was little the government could do to make beaches safer outside Adelaide, the state capital and its most populous city.

Outside the state, a 16-year-old girl killed by a bull shark in a river in the west coast city of Perth in February was the only other fatal shark attack in Australia during 2023.

Adelaide-based shark expert Andrew Fox said the increase in shark attacks in South Australia this year, including two non-fatal attacks, was difficult to explain.

He said overcast conditions like those at Ethel Beach on Thursday can embolden sharks to attack.