Hammerhead shark sighting prompts lifeguards to close Oceanside shoreline
11:56 AM, Aug 14, 2018
11:21 PM, Aug 14, 2018
OCEANSIDE, Calif. (KGTV) — Oceanside's shoreline was closed Tuesday after the sighting of a 9-foot long hammerhead shark.
Oceanside Lifeguards temporarily closed the city's beaches from Wisconsin Ave. to Harbor Beach around 11:30 a.m. Police officers were dispatched on a boat offshore to keep an eye out for the shark, according to the city.
The shark was last seen swimming about 100 yards offshore, south of the Oceanside Pier. The shoreline was reopened at 2:30 p.m. after a final search of the area came up empty.
The Instagram user who posted the video, who asked 10News to refer to him as "Nick B.," told 10News he was fishing near the pier's bait shop when the shark swam past.
Hammerhead shark sightings are rare along the coastline, according to a release from Oceanside Lifeguard Sergeant Mason Turvey. The sharks are attracted to warmer waters and have been known to frequent tropical coastlines.
If hammerhead sharks are spotted, they are typically just "passing through our waters," Turvey wrote.
Tuesday, August 14 at 11:00 a.m.: Due to a hammerhead shark sighting, the #Oceanside Lifeguards have temporarily closed the beach from Wisconsin to Harbor Beach. The beach will reopen when they assess the shark has moved on. Oceanside Police are on boat offshore to monitor. pic.twitter.com/prKmxZvqQx
“This is a particularly warm year, particularly near the coast, so I've just been waiting for the footage of them to appear,” Kacev said. “The prevailing thought is they’re moving north with their prey in this warmer water, so they’re up here searching for food.”
“(Hammerheads) find stingrays in the sand," he said, adding that they're not looking to harm humans. "They are a really neat animal. They are out there trying to find food and stay away from people as much as possible."
Kacev added shark attacks are rare, and getting attacked by a hammerhead is even less likely because it is not known to be an aggressive species of shark - like the great whites we've seen this Summer.
As recently as July 2, Oceanside Lifeguards were on the lookout after two great white shark sightings ahead of the July 4 weekend.