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Surfing gran canaria | canary islands surf camp | A rendezvous with a shark

Jan 29 2014

Sharks are among the first danger associated with surfing. Attacks on surf tours are not common in Europe, but there are things you can do to further reduce the risk. Canary islands surf camp will equip you with some useful knowledge

Surfers stay close to reefs and river mouths, they love surf tours early in the morning and of course, they spend lots of time floating in open water having a very similar appearance like a sea lion. Maybe you will be pretty safe from sharks when surfing gran canaria but generally surfers seem predestined for being attacked by a sharks. Doesn’t matter where you will be on surf tours, canary islands surf camp will cover you with some basic ways how you can avoid a shark offensek

Due to the popularity of the recent article “Sharks in the Atlantic Ocean”, canary islands surf camp decided to deepen this apparently exiting topic.

As we learned, it is nearly impossible to meet a shark when on a surf tour in canary islands surf camp.  However, surfers are traveler and you will experience more than surfing gran canaria during your water career. Someday you will paddle out at a place more likely to inhabit sharks like Florida, Australia, California or Hawaii. Even though the risk of meeting a shark on your surf tour is still very low, it doesn’t hurt to be prepared for the worst case scenario. Therefore, Canary islands surf camp will give you some precognition how to fight off an attack, but even more important, you will get to know how to minimize the risk of attacks.


10 Ways to avoid meeting a shark

1.) Stay out of shark-infested waters

The best and most obvious way to avoid shark attacks is not to go on surf tours where sharks are known to hang out. Beaches famous for shark attacks are for example New Smyrna Beach, Florida and Long Beach Island, New Jersey. You don’t put yourself in a risk when surfing gran canaria :-)

2.) Avoid surfing at night and at dawn

So-called dawn patrols (surfing the early morning) and late evening sessions are very popular among surfers, also in canary islands surf camp. Unfortunately, these periods are also popular to sharks. At these times, they are generally most active due to feeding and hunting and tend to move closer inshore. In addition, the lack of visibility makes it easier for them to mistake you for one of their favorite meals. So stay out of the waters during those times and shift your surf tour to another timeJ


3.) Heed warning signs and advices

Between the flags of patrolled beaches are the safest spots to swim & surf, holds true for surfing gran canaria and elsewhere in the world. Coastal areas where sharks have recently been seen, sometimes post warnings at the beach. Above that, local people may be able to alert you to potential dangers. If happens, don’t test your fate by trying to be brave.l


4.) Surf with a dude  

Instead of surfing alone, surf with a group of friends or stay near other surfers. Not only does this keep sharks at bay, but also provide a second pair of eyes and a hands if needed in an emergency. In canary islands surf camp you will always find someone who will happily join you on your surf tour.


5.) Stay away from river mouths, channels 

River mouths are areas where food, organic waste and dead animals are washed into the ocean. This attracts predators because it is an abundant resource of food for them. This naturally also applies for all other places in the water where you find dead animals other potential food like schools of bait fishes or groups of sea lions. Where there are seals, there are likely to find sharks. When surfing gran canaria, you are blessed with crystal clear and clean water.

6.) Dress appropriately

Bright, high-contrast or flashy colors have been known to attract predators. Therefore, its better to stay away of wearing a bright-coloured wetsuit or surfboards on your surf tours. Sharks don’t see in colour, but in shades of black and white, using contrast to distinguish objects. Above that, avoid wearing Shiny sparkly jewelry because the reflection of light is similar to the reflection of light off a fish’s scales.

7.) Don’t surf when you´re bleeding

In fact, sharks can smell and taste blood from more than a mile away. Because of this, getting raked across the reef or suffering a nasty fin cut are good reasons to finish your surf tour and exit the water.


8.) Beware of drop-offs and sandbars 

Often these are areas that are ideal conditions for surfing but they are favorite feeding areas for sharks. Therefore, avoid steep drop-offs and the areas between sandbars. These are among sharks’ favorite haunts. You will not find such potential danger in canary islands surf camp.


9.) Keep away from fishing activities

Also, avoid surfing in areas where people are fishing. Bait, blood, and distressed fish might be in the area. Therefore, you should stay clear of fishing of piers and jetties as best you can.


10.) Avoid surfing in murky dirty water

Be aware of entering the ocean after a storm or heavy rainfall when the water turns to be turbid, murky and dirty. The low visibility will make it more difficult for sharks to determine whether you are their usual prey (turtles, seals etc.) or not. Likely, when doing a surf tour in canary islands surf camp you can almost always enjoy perfect weather and clear ocean.

What to do if you encounter a shark

Just for the sake of completeness :-)   we as canary islands surf camp also added some advices how to react if it really should meet a shark on your surf tour.

Stay Calm and just keep cool

This sounds a lot easier said than done but it’s really important.  If you do come across a shark on your surf tour, do not act aggressively because they may react in fear and attack. Like many predators, shark can sense fear and this will only arouse their senses so avoid heavy, agitated splashing. If the shark is far away, exit the water as quick as you can and alert others. If a shark is approaching, be prepared for the next step.

Be ready to fight A dead shark is the only good shark, good shark slayer!

First thing you may do automatically is to get in a position where you are able to defend your front and sides of your body. The only weapon you might have is your surfboard, try to avoid using your hands, but rather use your board as a shield of a barrier. Intend to hit the shark in its most delicate areas through gouging at its eyes or hitting its nose.

Get Aggressive and leave the water

Once you´re attracts, get as aggressive as you can. Most sharks who attack surfers confuse them with prey. However, once they realize that surfers are not their usual high fat meals, they usually let go. As soon as you can, get out of the water and stop the bleeding.

You heard enough ?? Stay out of the line of fire and choose canary island surf camp for your next surf tour!!

Stay salty- Lowcost Surf Camp Las Palmas, Kelly

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