A surfer has described the moment in which he had to fight off a killer shark after he was attacked off a bay in New Zealand. Briton Darren Mills, who emigrated to Queenstown, New Zealand, was surfing with friends when he was attacked off Porpoise Bay.
The emotional surfer said he hit what he thought to be a great white shark as it tore into his leg, leaving him with three deep gashes in his thigh and calf. His friends caught the first big wave to take them back to shore, but Mills missed it, leaving him at the mercy of the shark. Surfer Mills was teary when he faced media to describe the moment he had to fight of a killer shark after he was attacked in a bay off New Zealand. “I was pretty scared it [the shark] was going to come back, but it didn’t,” Mills told New Zealand media.
Mills was also fortunate in that when he finally got back to shore an off-duty medic was there to help stem the flow of blood and keep Mill’s spirits up before he was taken to hospital by helicopter.
When Mills’ surfboard was retrieved it boasted bite marks, which experts used to estimate the shark at someone between two and three meters long. Residents and tourists have since been targeted with posters warning them not to swim off Porpoise Bay.
Less than two weeks before, Mills appeared in a James Bond for a Day tourism promotional video, which involved him riding a motorized toy shark on a lake. He posted the video on social media website Facebook.
The attack comes just one month after a doctor was attacked by a shark near the same area as Mills. He managed to fend off the shark, sew up his wounds and head to the pub for a beer. The government of neighboring Australia has come in for severe criticism of late after it embarked on a shark culling spree in a bid to reduce attacks on surfers and swimmers. However, the move was met with a lot of opposition, with protestors pointing to the fact humans were encroaching on the sharks’ territory and that the fish are have more right to the ocean than their poachers.
The cull, which has been taking place in Western Australia, has not only divided the nation’s people, but other countries have waded into the debate. The South African government has warned it will have a negative impact on Western Australia’s tourism industry.
Just last month, New Zealander James Grant was swimming not too far from Porpoise Bay when he was attacked by a shark. The junior doctor stabbed the predator, before swimming ashore to suture his own wounds and cap the day off with a pint of beer. He had the wounds treated properly the next day when he went back to work at the hospital.
Mills, it seems, was not the first surfer to describe the moment in which he had to fight off a killer shark after he was attacked off a bay in New Zealand. He will not be the last.
By Robert Shepherd