Melissa Brunning, 34, was on a yacht in the remote Kimberley region, some 1,553 miles north of Perth, when she tried to hand-feed up to four tawny nurse sharks swimming around her boat. That's when one of the sharks clamped onto her finger and dragged her into the water. " She now has a simple message for the rest of humankind".
And it's not just foreign tourists who need to be mindful. Very sound advice from a reliable and knowledgeable source.
Her friends and the boat's crew sprung into action and calmed her by telling her finger was still in tact, just injured.
She was the last of her friends to try feeding the sharks but didn't realise she shouldn't attempt to feed it by hand but instead should drop the food in the water nearby.
When interviewed by Australian news channel 7 News about the incident, she said she sustained cuts, a fracture, a torn ligament, and an infection on her finger from the attack. Brunning said that she initially thought her right pointer finger was taken off during the attack, but after being pulled to safety, it was revealed that her finger was still in tact.
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"I came up and I said, "I've lost my finger" and I couldn't even look at my finger because I thought it was gone, and I thought if I looked at it I'd probably go into shock", Brunning recalled.
Nurse sharks are slow-moving bottom-dwellers that are generally harmless to humans, according to National Geographic.
Tawny sharks are normally placid creatures, but will bite defensively if they feel threatened. I have full respect for sharks, I think they're incredible.
The woman does not blame the shark, adding that it has taught her to "respect marine life".