Monday, June 17, 2024

Officials issue shark warning to bathers in Los Cabos

People — bathers in particular — should keep an eye out for sharks in Los Cabos, warns the director of the local office of the Civil Protection agency.

Erick Santillán said fishermen have reported seeing sharks off La Ribera, La Playa and Chileno and advised that with the decline of human activity on the area’s beaches, marine life has broadened its natural habitat.

After a shark stole part of a fisherman’s catch, officials in the community of La Playa near San Jos del Cabo decided to close the beach to fishermen and bathers for several hours on Saturday.

Officials were alerted to the possible presence of a shark inside the community’s marina at Puerto Los Cabos after a man fishing from shore reported that a shark ate nearly half of a fish he had hooked. 

The beach was reopened the following day. 

A scuba diver filmed a school of eight whitetip reef sharks, which are small and not normally aggressive toward humans, some 50 meters off the coast of El Chileno beach in Los Cabos earlier this week, but the beach was not closed. 

The whitetip reef shark has seen its numbers dwindle as it is killed for its fins which are used in soup and oil which is valued for medicinal properties. 

In late June, the beach at La Ribera in Los Cabos was closed for two days after a drone filmed of a two-meter-long shark swimming in shallow waters just off the beach. 

Carlos Narro of the state fisheries association Asupesca explained that after several months without humans, the population of various marine species has grown significantly which in turn attracts sharks. He urged bathers to exercise caution when entering the sea. 

The only known shark attacks in Los Cabos occurred when a surfer had his foot bitten in 2005 at San Luis beach, and when a cat-sized shark bit a man’s toe in 2008.

Source: Milenio (sp), BCS Noticias (sp), Metropolimx (sp)

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