New Zealand Doctor Bit by Large Shark, Survived, and Stitched Leg Before Going to Pub

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By Reissa Su | January 28, 2014 5:30 PM EST

A man survived a shark attack in New Zealand by stabbing the large creature with his knife then swimming to shore. Although the shark bit James Grant, a doctor, on the leg, it didn't stop him from going to the pub first to have a beer before going to the hospital.

REUTERS/FINBARR O'REILLY
A shark swims in a marine display at an aquarium in Cape Town, South Africa, June 10, 2007. REUTERS/FINBARR O'REILLY

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Mr Grant went spearfishing on Jan 25 in about six feet of water in Garden Bay in Invercargill when he suddenly felt a deep bite on his leg. At first, he thought it was one of his friends pulling off a prank but when he turned around, he was shocked to see what he thought was a sevengill shark. He quickly pulled his diving knife and stabbed the creature several times in an attempt to get it off his leg.

Mr Grant told Radio News Zealand the shark might have let him go because he was able to give it a "few nicks." He swam as fast as he could just as the shark took off.  When he removed his wetsuit, he saw that a row of teeth marks had punctured his leg. Mr Grant thought his wounds could have been worse if he had not been wearing the 7 mm thick wetsuit. His friends thought he was joking when he tried to wave his friends back to shore.

When his friends did not join him, Mr Grant left and tried to be resourceful. He took out the needle and thread from his first aid kit then began to stitch his wound.  He walked to a nearby pub to have a beer. Someone gave him a bandage for his leg.

Mr Grant worked as a doctor in Southland Hospital. He finally had the chance to clean and stitch his wound properly.

Despite having an almost fatal encounter with a large sevengill shark, Mr Grant said he will be back in the water when his stitches come out. Sevengill sharks can grow up to three metres in length. Humans are not part of their food chain but they attack when they feel threatened or agitated. 

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(Photo: REUTERS/FINBARR O'REILLY / )
A shark swims in a marine display at an aquarium in Cape Town, South Africa, June 10, 2007. REUTERS/FINBARR O'REILLY
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