BUSAN, South Korea — Sharks are not an unusual sight off of Korea’s west coast, but a local fisherman on Saturday landed a twelve-foot (4m) great white shark that swam into their nets off the east coast port city of Busan.
Several species of sharks including great whites and hammerheads usually appear in Korean waters between spring and summer following warm Yellow Sea currents that carry mackerel and squid.
According to locals, this is a first for Busan.
This is amazing, nothing like this has ever happened, said one Busan fisherman speaking to the media.
This will likely raise alarms for Busan officials concerned with the city’s biggest tourist draw, Haeundae Beach, which attracts millions of swimmers during the summer months.
Back in 2009 the Busan government set up electronic shark repelling devices following the beaching of two great whites in Incheon –one that measured a whopping 18 feet (6m).
According to authorities, shark attacks should not be a concern to the general public.
On the west coast, there were six deaths from shark attacks over the last 20 years, and most of the victims were women (abalone) divers. Korea has not had a report yet of a shark attack on a swimmer on the beach, but beach management authorities are coming up with preventive measures,” said Kim Jung-nyun, a researcher at the National Fisheries Research and Development Institute in a 2009 interview with the Korea Times.
The fisherman that netted the great white in Busan sold it to a local restaurant for $700. Apparently, before the shark was brought aboard the boat, it consumed all of the fish in the net.
You can view a video report in Korean here.