Nelson man Adam Gudsel was the victim of a shark attack on Saturday. Pictured right is a bronze whaler shark. Photo: Phillip Rollo.

Shark attack

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A Nelson man was counting his lucky stars on Saturday after he was attacked by a shark while spear fishing off The Glen.

The two-metre bronze whaler came “in the blink of an eye” to swim right at Adam Gudsel, who had just speared a kingfish a few minutes earlier and was still reeling it in. Adam says the incident happened “in a flash” but instinct took over and he was able to kick it on the nose and divert it.

Straight away he yelled for help from a kayaker nearby. He jumped on his boat and was taken back to the beach as the shark took Adam’s kingfish.

He says he has heard of a bronze whaler shark taking speared kingfish off The Glen but was shocked that it came for him and thinks it may be behaviour its learnt.

“It’s a popular spot for spear fishermen and perhaps picking fish off the end of a spear is easy pickings but it’s a concern that it’s coming for people.”

Adam says he retreated to the beach with his “tail between his legs” but was out again the next day, just not in the same spot. “My wife and mum won’t let me,” he joked.

He believes the shark either just tried to bump him out of the way so he could get the speared kingfish or got a bit excited about it and actually came for him. “I’ll never know and I sleep better at night thinking it was the first one.”
There have been reported deaths due to an attack from a bronze whaler, the latest in Auckland last year.

Adam says he wanted to thank the kayaker who helped him and said it hadn’t been a good year, losing a wet suit in Kaiteriteri last weekend and a Cressi dive watch off the roof of his car at the end of last year.