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9 Year-Old FL Boy Bitten By Shark In St. Augustine Beach

11:33 AM, Sep 2, 2013   |    comments
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ST. AUGUSTINE BEACH, Fla. -- Connor Baker, 9, is doing fine, but he experienced quite a scare after he was bitten by a shark Sunday.

The St. Johns County Fire and Rescue Department confirmed the child was bitten by a shark around noon while netting with some friends south of the Ocean Trace Ramp in St. Augustine Beach.

"He lifted up his leg and you can see the white streaks down where it had bit pretty deep into his leg," said Ryan Baker, Connor's father.

The injury was minor, but required Baker to be transported to Flagler hospital and receive nine stitches.

"I didn't cry," said Connor, who was bitten in the left leg on his calf.

"He was hilarious, he came out of the water with his hands over his head yelling 'I got bit by a shark" he was so excited," said Baker.

Lieutenant Snell with the St. Johns County Fire and Rescue Department says the shark was about four feet long.

According to the International Shark Attack File database, Florida is known to have the highest shark attack activity in the U.S.

Last year 26 people were injured by sharks, none of the attacks were fatal.

According to the file, the last time someone died of a shark attack in Florida was in 2011.

Shark sightings are common on Florida beaches. Joseph Beck says a few weeks ago he saw sharks in St. Augustine Beach.

"About 100 yards up the beach there were probably about five or six sharks swimming around really close to shore. A lot of people were just watching, standing around watching," said Beck.

No one died from shark attacks in Florida last year, but 11 people drowned, according to the United States Lifesaving Association. Florida also had a total of 2,420 rescues from rip currents. Lifeguards advise swimmers to be aware of beach conditions before getting in the water, and that's what Danny Merryman is doing with his family this holiday weekend.

"We have a two-year-old and a six-year-old, so it's a little bit tough too because you really have to watch them at all times so we're just kind of keeping them close to the shore," said Merryman.

Source: WTLV (First Coast News)

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