Shark sighting caught on video prompts warning to beachgoers


MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. – A budding marine scientist has a warning for beachgoers in the wake of a recent shark sighting: keep a close eye on your surroundings when you're in the water.

Nicki Welch-Hudson said she was at Myrtle Beach on Thursday when lifeguards ordered everyone out of the water. A blacktip shark was seen swimming near the shore, not far from where children play.

"My intention is to educate tourists and the public about marine wildlife," Welch-Hudson told News4Jax in a Wednesday interview.

Welch-Hudson shared video of the sighting, which shows the shark swimming in the shallows parallel to the shore with its fin skating along the surface of the water.

The clip is just another reminder to be wary of jellyfish, sharks and rip currents, among other potential dangers, when you hit the beach this summer.

Shore-based shark fishing and warmer waters in the Atlantic Ocean are known to attract sharks to feed in shallower waters with low visibility.

According to the Florida Museum, you can take the following steps to avoid an unlikely but unwanted encounter with a shark. You can view the complete list on the museum's website:

  • Always swim in a group. Frequently, shark attacks involve those swimming alone.
  • Don't stray from the shore. Wandering too far isolates you from those who could help.
  • Avoid the water in low-light conditions. Sharks tend to be more active at dusk and dawn.
  • Don't go into the water with an open wound. Because sharks can detect blood, you're a more likely target if you're bleeding in the water.
  • Avoid wearing shiny jewelry. When the sunlight reflects off your jewelry, it can look similar to fish scales.

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