Researchers Find Oldest Known Shark Attack Victim

Researchers Find Oldest Known Shark Attack Victim

( – Researchers investigating the body of a Bronze Age man have made a chilling discovery. The horribly mutilated 3,000-year-old skeleton is the world’s oldest shark attack victim.

On June 23, a team of researchers led by Oxford University academics Alyssa White and Professor Rick Schulting announced that they had solved the mystery of a body found in a communal grave beside Japan’s Seto Inland Sea. The skeleton, known only as No. 24, had puzzled the team because of its appalling condition. The man’s left hand and right leg were missing, and his left leg seemed to have been severed; he was buried with it lying upside down on top of his body. The remaining bones were scarred with almost 800 jagged cuts.

White and Schulting ruled out attack by humans or any common predators – then, finally, they consulted a shark expert. George Burgess of the Florida Program for Shark Research recreated a scene that happened more than 3,000 years ago.

Burgess deduced that the man had likely been fishing with friends when he was attacked by a large shark – most probably a great white or tiger shark – and lost his life in a horrifying struggle. Burgess thinks he lost his hand desperately trying to fend off the attack, but died of his injuries. His friends then rescued his body and buried him in the communal grave – where, thirty centuries later, his tragic story was rediscovered.

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