A small shark hung onto a Florida beachgoer’s arm relentlessly over the weekend, and the victim acted like it was no big deal.
In video widely seen on social media, an unidentified bearded man in blue trunks is seen standing with a gray nurse shark latched on to his upper arm as he cradles it like a baby.
“A beach patron came up to the tower and advised me that this guy needed help out on the sandbar with a shark that was stuck to his arm,” Lifeguard Brian Bricious told 12 News. “Just when you think you’ve seen it all, something comes along and surprises you.”
A Martin County Fire Rescue spokeswoman confirmed to the Miami Herald that a crew responded to the incident just after 1 p.m. Sunday.
In the clip, shot by bystander Jeremy Porter and posted on Facebook, you see people gathered around the individual while an MCFR crew attempts to pry the fish off.
At one point, alcohol is poured on the fish. Nothing.
“Does it hurt?” asks a young boy off camera.
“Looks like you have a friend for life,” says a girl.
“I just wanted to play volleyball today, OK?” said the victim, looking completely nonplussed.
Porter says on his Facebook post that the guy wasn’t totally innocent, writing in the caption that the man went after the shark and it bit him.
MCFR spokeswoman Bethany Alex could not confirm the speculation that the man was the aggressor.
“We would like to use this as an opportunity to tell people that it’s important to respect the wildlife,” she said. “We’re in their domain, they’re not in our domain.”
Alex added that the man was treated on the beach and his injuries did not require hospitalization.