A horrifying shark attack just thirty miles from where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge recently spent their honeymoon has killed Ian Redmond, 30, who was snorkelling only 30ft off Anse Lazio beach on the island of Praslin when the 6ft shark struck close to the shore.
This is the second death on this Seychelles beach in the last two weeks, after a French diver died on August 2nd. The island’s government was holding an emergency meeting about the previous attack, the same day Mr. Redmond died.
The shark attacked yesterday afternoon on the idyllic beach where the honeymoon couple were in their second week of their honeymoon. Halifax recently reported that the Seychelles is a favourite holiday spot for Britons, and a “dream honeymoon” destination.
It’s extremely unlucky, as the two recent deaths are the first in the waters in this stretch of the Indian Ocean for fifty years and last night shark hunters were being flown in from South Africa to track what locals believe is a “rogue” shark roaming the local waters.
Local beaches have been closed and swimming is banned near the attack location. Just weeks ago, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge honeymooned a short drive away from the scene of the tragedy.
According to newspaper reports, one American tourist said: "Someone had seen a fin sticking out of the water, and then we saw a dinghy pulling a man from the water. I saw the swimmer, who was missing a huge chunk of flesh from his left leg, so much so that I could see the bone of his thigh. He was sickeningly pale, but still had his flippers on both feet. At this point a woman ran over and started screaming ‘That’s my husband!’ "
According to the Telegraph, Jeanne Vargiolu, 56, the owner of Le Chevalier restaurant on the beach, said she saw Mrs Redmond saying she “still had hope” for her husband while he lay on the beach with horrific injuries. Ms Vargiolu said the two attacks were the first she had known in the 36 years her family had lived on the beach. "It must be the same shark that attacked 16 days ago," she said.
Experts believe the culprit may be a tiger shark which grows to over five metres long, is a lone hunter, mainly at night, and preys on seals, smaller sharks and dolphins. They often attack humans, including surfers.
The British High Commissioner Matthew Forbes flew to the island to comfort the widowed bride last night. The couple had been staying on Praslin since August 14 and were due to leave the island this Friday to the main island of Mahé before flying back to Britain.
Around 19,000 British tourists travel to the Seychelles every year and shark attacks on the islands have previously been linked to the fish industry, because the Seychelles host the largest tuna canning factory in the world, and the dumping of fish waste into coastal waters is thought to lure predators.