'More of a nibble than an attack': Mike Porter's close shave with shark

A SURFER has escaped with minor cuts and stitches after fighting off a shark clamped on to his foot at Lighthouse Beach on Wednesday evening.

After detailed forensic analysis of the victim's wounds and flipper damage, shark biologists from the Department of Primary Industries have determined a Wobbegong was responsible.    

A crowded line-up convinced Mike Porter to swap his surfboard for his flippers and to snap photos in the ideal waves on dusk.

Soon after 6pm, the Sandy Feet Surf Co shop owner would find himself throwing punches at a shark. 

"It's all a bit of a blur," Mr Porter told the Port News the morning after the incident. "I'd just come up from a wave and I was getting ready to take a photo when I felt it latch onto my foot."

"I didn't know what to think, but I had a pretty good idea it was a shark."

Lucky escape: A shark bit through Mike Porter's rubber flipper and into his foot on Wednesday evening.

Lucky escape: A shark bit through Mike Porter's rubber flipper and into his foot on Wednesday evening.

THERE has been a report of a suspected shark attack at Lighthouse Beach on Wednesday evening.

THERE has been a report of a suspected shark attack at Lighthouse Beach on Wednesday evening.

True to how he'd always thought he'd respond in this situation, the 40-year-old began throwing his fists.

"I just kept punching it until it let go, I think I probably hit it twice. But I kept on swinging for a while."

Another surfer helped Mr Porter swim some 40metres back to shore.

He then shared his story with a few locals, before driving himself to the Port Macquarie Base Hospital. 

Eyewitnesses told the Port News there was a high-concentration of bait fish in the vicinity and a very strong smell of fish emanating from the water.

A number of other surfers also reported touching what they believed to be a shark.

Mr Porter said he considers himself a lucky man. But the unlikely attack wouldn't stop him from getting back in the ocean. 

"The stitches should be out in a week, and as soon as I can I'll be back in the water."

For more, see tomorrow's edition of the Port News.

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