■ STAFF REPORT
The Boca Grande Fire Department and Lee County EMS responded to their first shark bite call since 2005 on Wednesday, May 1.
At approximately 6:42 p.m. the call came in. The victim had been fishing on a boat in Boca Grande Pass when he lost his balance and fell into the water. Witnesses said it appeared to have been a bull shark that bit him once on the leg near his knee.
He was transported by helicopter to a local trauma center, and he appeared to be conscious and alert at the time of transport.
The last shark bite to take place on Gasparilla Island was in early July of 2005, when an Austrian visitor was bitten on the ankle while swimming in the Pass.
Last week shark researcher and fisherman Elliot Sudal was fishing near Boca Grande Pass when he caught a 13’ 2” male tiger shark that measured 81 inches around and weighed approximately 1,100 pounds. It was released alive after the data were collected.
Local captains and anglers are reporting some very healthy shark activity in the Pass at this time … and of course, the tarpon are there as well.