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It’s certainly not every day that a casual visit to the beach ends up in a life-saving mission – but that is exactly what happened on Jensen Beach in Florida … and luckily, it was all caught on video.

A man on the beach who was fishing (ironically) with his friends noticed something unusual. Close to the shore was a blacktip shark struggling vehemently to get out of something tangled around its body – turns out, the animal was trapped in a fishing line.

Unwilling to watch the shark struggle, the men rushed to see if they could help. In an act of bravery, one of them jumped into the water and dragged the shark to land. There, they were able to steady the shark, remove the hook from its mouth, and cut the line. After successfully removing the hook, the shark was flipped on its back (this method renders the shark immobile) and pulled back into the water.

What happened to the Jansen Beach shark is a great example of the horrible phenomenon of “by-catch”. Every year, millions of marine animals like sharks, dolphins, whales, and turtles become tangled in ghost nets and lines that are left behind by the commercial fishing industry. This shark was lucky to encounter people kind enough to risk saving him, but this is sadly not usually the case. Share this post and raise awareness for marine animals – and remember, if you ever spot a marine animal in distress, contact a professional before taking action. What this man did was heroic, but also very dangerous – for him and the shark – so please, refrain from doing anything without any professional input.

For a list of marine animal hotlines you can try, click here.

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