Australia Shark Encounters Guide

white shark ©hermanusbackpackers/Flickr

Sharks are one of the deadliest but also one of the most fascinating animals that swim in the Australian waters. This is also why shark encounters can be categorized into two main categories: planned by accidental. Now what I mean by these two categories is that some people are quite fascinating by sharks in which case Australian waters can offer plenty of occasions to get close to these interesting creatures; but sharks can also represent a menace for swimmers, divers and surfers, so it’s quite important to know how to avoid them.  This Australia shark encounters guide is intended to give you some essential information and tips on how to avoid sharks.  (A similar article with information about shark adventure experiences and diving with the sharks fill will follow soon).

Quick facts about shark attacks

Tiger Shark©eddie.welker/Flickr

It’s important to acknowledge that although there are over 150 species of sharks in the Australian waters, there are only three species which represent a real threat to humans: those are the tiger shark, white shark and bull shark). Even though the majority of sharks are predators, the number of deaths that were caused by sharks is actually not as worrisome as the number of fatalities due to dangerous swimming, for example. However, it order to reduce the risk of a shark encounter to a minimum, some basic safety rules must be respected:

Shark Encounters Safety tips

bull shark©Relativiox/Flickr

The most important rule when it comes to sharks is to respect the warning signs and the advice of safeguards. Swimming at sunset, sunrise or in murky waters can also increase the risk of a shark encounter. While having other people around can increase your safety, not the same thing can be said about pets: actually, swimming with pets in waters which are populated by sharks is not recommended. The sharks are attracted by two things: a lot of fish in the water and blood. So under no circumstance should anyone swim with an open wound, or swim in a place where fish are fed.  Another very simple rule on how to avoid sharks is like this: deeper the water, the bigger the danger. Your chanced to be attacked by sharks in clear, 1 meter deep waters are minimal. Last but not least, if observing a shark in your proximity, the most important measure you can take is to keep calm. Avoiding noises and splashes and slowly heading towards the shore are the three precautions suggested by shark experts.


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