A TEENAGER is in hospital after being bitten by a shark while surfing at Town Beach in Port Macquarie on Monday morning.
Oli Paterno, 13, was surfing just off the reef on Town Beach at about 6am on November 2 when the incident occurred.
Head lifeguard James Turnham who was on the beach when Ambulance NSW paramedics treated the teen, said the shark left lacerations on his ankle, leg and finger.
He said Oli, the younger brother of another local lifeguard, attempted to hit the shark away before heading to shore where his mother assisted until paramedics arrived.
"He wasn't that far out. The waves are only breaking about 30-40 metres out this morning," Mr Turnham said.
"He was in the centre of the beach near the rocks where there is a bit of a reef.
"It has made a mess of his ankle and there was a small bite to his finger. It wasn't life threatening.
"He was in a bit of shock."
There were surfers along the length of the beach to the breakwall this morning. It is believed the Oli's mother called out for help from other surfers when she realised what had happened.
Ambulance NSW Paramedics were called and treated the teen on the beach before transporting him to Port Macquarie Base Hospital.
He had bites to his ankle, upper leg and finger.
"Amazingly, he was in fairly good spirits when our crew arrived and local surf lifesavers did a great job looking after him when he first came out of the water," NSW Ambulance inspector Susan George said.
"The patient was treated by paramedics at the scene before being transported to Port Macquarie Base Hospital in a stable condition.
"I'd say this young man will have a few stories to tell his mates when he's well enough to return to school!"
Lifeguards closed Town Beach for the remainder of the day.
After some investigations, the DPI say the shark involved is believed to have been a small whaler shark.
Lifeguards on jet skis patrolled the water throughout the morning.
A small, clean swell is coming through on Town Beach but a larger swell is expected to hit the region's southern beaches today.