By Web Staff
JONES BEACH, New York (WCBS) — Another shark sighting on Long Island forced swimmers out of the water Tuesday.
As CBS2’s Nick Caloway reports, just after 11 a.m., several sharks were seen between Field 2 and the Central Mall, a few hundred yards offshore. Possibly as many as seven total were seen throughout the day.
They were identified as sand sharks and thresher sharks.
Red flags greeted visitors for most of the day after lifeguards had to suspend swimming, only allowing people in the water up to their ankles.
“We went into the water and we started to go deeper, and right away, you hear those whistles blowing and we’re like, ‘Why? What’s wrong?’ ‘Oh, there might be a shark in the water,’” Pelham resident Karina Negron said.
“There’s a lot of eyes on the water, so we’ve been seeing sharks on and off today,” New York State Parks regional director George Gorman said.
Drones and helicopters were used to patrol the waters. Drone video taken by Jones Beach lifeguards shows a cobia fish chasing large schools of bluefish.
Parks officials say all those bluefish are attracting sharks closer to the shore.
“All the marine life that we’re seeing normally is further offshore, but it’s closer because those bluefish are feeding on bunker fish, which are close to shore,” Gorman said.
So far, there’s been no risk to the public, but the sightings come a day after a lifeguard was bitten in the water.
Officials have not confirmed it was a shark bite.
State Parks officials said a lifeguard was in the water around 11 a.m. Monday when he felt a bite on his left calf and then saw a fin. He was left with a gash about an inch long.
He is expected to be OK.
Swimming was suspended for about three hours.
There were shark sightings last week at Jones Beach and Nickerson Beach, following an unprecedented 20 sightings last year.
Nassau County Executive Laura Curran sent a tweet saying police are “intensifying aerial and water patrols out of an abundance of caution,” and urged people to stay calm.
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