A blue shark was spotted swimming close to shore among swimmers along three beaches at the popular tourist destination of Magalluf on the Spanish island of Majorca, causing a bit of panic among beachgoers over the weekend.
Each sighting prompted announcements for everyone to get out of the water.
"Yup, that's a shark!" Tim Prottey-Jones wrote on Twitter with a photo of the intruder. "Never seen a beach clear so quickly!"
As one can see from the videos and photos, the blue shark caused quite a commotion among the tourists, who scrambled out of the water over safety concerns and then crowded around local experts to get a look at the shark, which was captured Sunday at Can Pastilla beach.
“After a thorough evaluation by the experts, a hook was detected in the mouth of the animal, which caused irreversible damage," an aquarium spokesman told Diario de Mallorca, adding that the shark needed to be put down.
“In these circumstances, a sedative is administered to tranquilize the animal. Afterwards, it is euthanized to minimize suffering, stress and to provide it with a dignified death.”
Although blue sharks are said to rarely bite humans with only 13 attacks (four fatal) since record-keeping began, according to the Florida Museum's Shark Attack File, tourists apparently had reason to flee the water.
An elderly Spanish man suffered a 2-inch gash to his hand last month while being bitten off the beach at Playa d'en Bossa, according to the Daily Mail. And last July a 40-year-old tourist in Elche near Alicante was also bitten in the hand and required stitches. A blue shark, the most common species in the Mediterranean, was blamed in each attack.
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