Authorities have gotten no word of any more shark sightings following a report this week that a spearfisher was nipped on the leg by one roughly seven feet long off the coast of La Jolla, a lifeguard lieutenant said Thursday.
The scary encounter resulted in no injuries, only small punctures in the wetsuit that 28-year-old diver Justin Schlaefli was wearing during his ocean outing with several friends late Monday afternoon, Lt. Nick Lerma said.
Schlaefli told lifeguards the shark appeared to be a sevengill, according to Lerma, who said the species is fairly common off the coast of San Diego and generally poses little to no threat to humans.
“Its normal pattern is to look (at people) and then go the other way,” Lerma said.
Lifeguards believe the shark was only interested in a calico bass that Schlaefli had strapped to his belt after one of his buddies speared it.
The incident did not result in any beach closures or public warnings. Schlaefli described the experience on a website that documents run-ins with sharks.
“I (felt) this sudden pressure and movement on my calf,” he posted on SharkAttackSurvivors.com. “I looked down and the shark had my calf in its mouth and bit down three times. This is the strange part: I am not sure if it was because the shark had realized it had missed the calico (its obvious target) or because it tasted neoprene, but the shark was biting me a bit like a
dog who is playing with you and bites your hand.”
After letting go, the shark swam toward one of the other men, who shot it with his spear gun. At that point, the sevengill disappeared into the ocean, taking the diver’s fishing apparatus with it, Schlaefli wrote.