Close encounters with sharks a summer staple

A quick-thinking Florida cop pulled a young surfer out of the path of a shark in a harrowing close encounter posted on the Cocoa Beach Police Facebook page.

The footage shows an off-duty officer warning the young boarder “Hey, buddy. Hey. There’s a shark. There he is. Got him?” The clip shows the officer pulling the boy out of harm’s way as the shark’s fin comes close by.

It all took place as the waves were breaking near the shore on Cocoa Beach. A bystander was credited with catching it all on camera.

The species of shark is not immediately clear nor was it clarified on the Facebook page, but some commenters pointed out that the white fin could indicate it was an oceanic whitetip reef shark, which is known for inhabiting tropical and warmer waters, Yahoo reported.

Oceanic whitetip sharks are large sharks found in tropical and subtropical oceans throughout the world. Oceanic whitetip sharks are long-lived, late maturing, and have low to moderate productivity, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Commercial fishing, combined with the rise in demand for shark fins, is threatening oceanic whitetip sharks, NOAA adds.

As for closer to home, great white sharks remain the constant worry along Cape Cod. An 8-foot shark was spotted as it circled a boat for about 15 minutes off Sandy Neck Beach near Sandwich on Saturday.

A Fox News video clip of that brush with a great white includes someone on the boat marveling at the size of the beast and that it had blue bottom paint on it.

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