Italian tourist killed in Caribbean horror shark attack after being bitten in the leg by 8ft beast

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A 56-year-old Italian tourist is killed in a horror shark attack in the Caribbean after being bitten in the leg by an 8ft beast while snorkeling near the beach

  • Antonio Straccialini died after being bitten by what is believed to be a tiger shark
  • This is believed to be the first shark attack on the Colombian island of San Andres
  • The 56-year-old died after suffering severe blood loss in Friday’s attack

An Italian tourist has died after being bitten by a horrific shark attack in the waters off a beautiful Caribbean island.

The man, who was named by the local press as Antonio Roseto Degli Abruzzi but has since been named in Italy as Antonio Straccialini, was attacked by the 8ft beast as he was snorkeling off the coast off the Colombian island of San Andres.

The 56-year-old, from Roseto degli Abruzzi on the east coast of central Italy, was bitten in the thigh at a popular snorkeling area called La Piscinita on Friday March 18.

Graphic images published by the local press and on social media showed him lying on his back after the attack with blood pouring from his wound before being taken to hospital.

He went into shock soon after the attack due to blood loss and later died.

Antonio Straccialini was killed after being attacked by a shark on the island of San Andres, Colombia

The 56-year-old is believed to have been bitten by a tiger shark, like the one pictured above

The 56-year-old is believed to have been bitten by a tiger shark, like the one pictured above

The incident was described as a first in an area which is packed with hotels and dive centers and is considered one of the best places to snorkel on the island.

An island government spokesman said: ‘There are professional diving programs in which sharks pass by, but nothing has ever happened.

Dive instructor Mirla Zambrano, 50, added: ‘We are all very surprised. This is the first time a shark has attacked a tourist in San Andres.

The attack has been blamed on a tiger shark, second only to the great white in recorded fatal incidents involving humans, although these are still extremely rare.

Mr Straccialini was snorkeling at La Piscinita, a popular swimming spot on San Andres Island

Mr Straccialini was snorkeling at La Piscinita, a popular swimming spot on San Andres Island

Videos circulating on social media show the two mainly nocturnal hunters believed to have been involved in Friday’s incident swimming in the clear water where the Italian holidaymaker lost his life.

Marine biologist Rodrigo Lopez said: “People are very worried about what happened and they’re not letting people in the water.”

“A witness said the man who was attacked was a good swimmer and had been in the sea for quite a while and when he went deeper a second time after coming back to shore he started screaming for help and was surrounded by blood. .’

Video taken at the scene shortly after the attack appears to show the shark which locals believe is responsible

Video taken at the scene shortly after the attack appears to show the shark which locals believe is responsible

Mauricio Valdonado, who risked his own life swimming to bring the tourist ashore, added: “He was alone.”

La Piscinita, which in English is Little Swimming Pool, takes its name from the calm water and the rock formation that makes it look like a natural swimming pool enclosed in cliffs.

Visitors describe it on Tripadvisor as a “great place to swim with the fish”.

One said after a recent trip, “A wonderful place. Very crystal clear and warm water, a good place to dive and enjoy some time in the water.

San Andres, about 470 miles north of the Colombian mainland, is part of Colombia but has historically been linked to the United Kingdom.

Tiger sharks, which have a reputation for being man-eaters, are recognizable by the distinctive stripes on their backs (File photo)

Tiger sharks, which have a reputation for being man-eaters, are recognizable by the distinctive stripes on their backs (File photo)

English settlers from Barbados and England settled in San Andres and the neighboring island of Providence in the 17th century.

The Welsh privateer Sir Henry Morgan used it in 1670 as one of the centers of his operations.

After a failed Spanish invasion of the islands in 1635, they were controlled by England until 1787.

THE TIGER SHARK

Tiger sharks are named for the dark vertical stripes found mostly on juvenile sharks

Large blunt-nosed predators have a reputation for being man-eaters

The tiger shark is second only to the great whites in terms of frequency of attacks on people

They are less likely to let go after biting a human because their palates are almost completely indistinguishable

Scavengers by nature, tiger sharks have an almost limitless menu of food, including fish, seals, birds, and dolphins.

They have sharp teeth and powerful jaws that allow them to crack the shells of sea turtles and clams

Tiger sharks are common in tropical and subtropical waters around the world

They can be up to 5 meters long and weigh over 635 kg.

They are listed as Near Threatened

Source: National geographic

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