If you are paddle boarding in the ocean and you see a shark, what should you do? Most people don’t know what to do in this situation, but it’s important to stay calm and take the proper precautions. In this blog post, I will discuss what to do if you see a shark while paddle boarding.
Steps To Take If You See A Shark Paddle boarding?
Shark attacks are rare, but they do happen. If you see a shark while paddle boarding, there are few things you could do to make it safely out of a potentially fatal encounter.
The first thing you should do is try to stay as calm as possible. If a shark senses your fear, it may become more aggressive. You want to avoid anything that might agitate the shark or make it feel threatened.
Don’t Splash Around
If you start splashing around, it will only attract the shark’s attention. Sharks are attracted to fast-moving objects and sudden movements in the water.
By remaining calm and not making any sudden movements, you are less likely to draw the shark’s attention.
Try to Get to Land
If you are close to shore, try to paddle calmly and quickly towards land. Getting out of the water is the best way to avoid an attack.
If you are further out, it’s important to stay calm and not splash around, but also keep an eye on the shark. You want to be aware of its movements and be ready to swim towards land if necessary.
Use Your Board as a Weapon
If the shark does attack, you can use your paddle board as a weapon. Try to hit the shark in the nose or eyes, which are sensitive areas. Hitting the shark might not deter it from attacking, but it could buy you some time to get to safety.
The best way to avoid a shark attack is to be aware of your surroundings and stay calm if you do see a shark. By following these tips, you can increase your chances of making it safely out of an encounter with a shark.
Do Sharks Attack Paddle Boarders?
Yes, Sharks can attack paddle boarders. While humans are not preferred prey for sharks, paddle boards can resemble a seal or turtle from below, making them a potential target. It is important to be aware of your surroundings when paddle boarding and to know what to do if you see a shark.
Attacks on humans are rare, but they do happen. If you find yourself in a situation where there is a shark nearby, follow the tips provided above to increase your chances of making it out safely.
Is Paddle Boarding In The Ocean Safe?
In general, paddle boarding in the ocean is safe as long as you take the necessary precautions. Here are some of the precautions you should take to safely paddle board in the ocean:
- Carefully choose the place and time to paddle board
It is extremely important that you pay attention to both the place and time when paddle boarding in the ocean.
Some areas are more prone to shark activity than others, so you should research an area before paddling there.
In addition, certain times of day are also riskier than others. For example, sharks are more active at dawn and dusk, so it is best to avoid paddle boarding during those times.
- Avoid being in the water alone
It is always best to paddle board with a buddy so that you can watch out for each other. If you are paddling alone, be sure to let someone on shore know your exact location and when you plan on returning.
- Be aware of your surroundings
This goes hand in hand with choosing the right place and time to paddle board. You should always be aware of your surroundings when in the water, and if you see anything that makes you feel uneasy, get out of the water immediately.
- Wear the proper attire
While you might not think that what you wear while paddle boarding would make a difference, it actually can.
Wearing brightly-colored clothing can help you stand out in the water and make it easier for others to spot you. In addition, wearing a life jacket is always a good idea in case of an emergency.
- Check the currents and tides
You want to be sure that you are aware of the current and tide conditions before getting in the water. Paddle boarding against a strong current can be extremely tiring, and if the tide is going out, you could find yourself stranded far from shore.
What makes paddle boarding in the ocean unsafe?
There are a few things that can make paddle boarding in the ocean unsafe.
First, if you are not careful about choosing the right place and time to paddle board, you could find yourself in an area with a lot of shark activity.
Second, if you are not a good swimmer, it is best to avoid paddle boarding in the ocean. High tides and strong currents are also a hazard for inexperienced paddle boarders.
Why Do Sharks Attack Paddle Boarders?
The most common reason for a shark to attack a paddle boarder is that the paddle boards, like surfboards, look like seals from below.
Another reason would be if the shark is feeling threatened or provoked. For example, if a paddle boarder accidentally bumps into a shark, the shark may attack out of fear.
Lastly, some sharks may see humans as prey. This is more common in areas where there is a lot of baitfish or other small marine life, as the sharks are used to seeing their prey from above.
While shark attacks on humans are rare, it is still important to be aware of the dangers and take the necessary precautions when paddle boarding in the ocean.
Best Ways to Prevent Shark Attack While On Your SUP
You can never be too careful when it comes to sharks, but there are a few things you can do to decrease your chances of being attacked.
- Avoid paddle boarding when the risk of a shark attack is greater
Often, sharks are more active at certain times of day, such as dawn and dusk. They also tend to be found in certain areas, such as near drop-offs or areas with a lot of small marine life. By avoiding these times and places, you can decrease your chances of being attacked by a shark.
- Avoid antagonizing a shark
There are many things you can do that may unintentionally provoke a shark. For example, don’t paddle board too close to a shark or try to touch it. In addition, if you are bleeding in the water, get out as quickly as possible.
Sharks can smell blood from far away and may attack if they think there is food nearby.
- Be aware of your surroundings
As we mentioned before, it is important to be aware of your surroundings when paddle boarding. If you see a shark or anything else that makes you feel uneasy, get out of the water immediately.
- Limit your contrast
You do not want to wear anything that will make you stand out in the water. Avoid wearing brightly-colored clothing or anything that will make you look like a seal from below.
- Avoid putting on jewelry
When you are in the water, it is best to avoid wearing any jewelry. This is because sharks can be attracted to shiny objects and may mistake them for fish.
- Go with a friend
It helps to have someone with you when you are in the water, especially if you are not a strong swimmer. If you see a shark, you can alert your friend and they can help you get out of the water quickly.
- Carry a whistle or flare gun
It is always a good idea to carry a whistle or flare gun when you are paddle boarding. If you see a shark, you can use the whistle to attract attention and the flare gun to scare the shark away.
- Control your motion
Be sure to paddle smoothly and avoid making any sudden movements. If you splash around or make a lot of noise, you may attract the attention of a nearby shark.
What Time Do Sharks Attack?
The feeding time of sharks differs depending on the species. Most sharks are nocturnal hunters, meaning they feed at night. However, there are some species of sharks that hunt during the day.
The most common time for a shark attack is dawn or dusk, as this is when many sharks are feeding. You want to avoid being in the water during these times if possible.
Shark-human encounters are rare but they can happen. It is important to be aware of the dangers and take the necessary precautions when paddle boarding in the ocean.
Hopefully, the tips we have mentioned will help you stay safe while you enjoy your time on the water. Do you have any other tips for avoiding a shark attack? Let us know in the comments below.