Tourism bodies refute shark claims
DESPITE initial reports that two people were bitten by a shark at a Hamilton Island beach, peak tourism bodies have now claimed the bite was actually from a toad fish.
The Queensland Ambulance Service today reported a young girl and a woman in her 60s were treated at the Hamilton Island Medical Centre after the pair were injured by a shark while in shallow water on the island's shore
Speaking to the media a QAS spokesman said the woman who was bitten identified what appeared to be a shark when she was bitten, estimating the size was about one meter in length. He also said lifeguards also reported shark sightings at the same beach.
Speaking to the Courier Mail earlier today Hamilton Island operators said: "Hamilton Island can confirm a child and an adult sustained lacerations from a shark less than 1 metre long, during an incident off Catseye Beach this morning.
Late this evening Hamilton Island, Tourism Whitsunday and Queensland Tourism Industry Council are all reporting the same story, suggesting the bite was not from a shark.
A Hamilton Island statement said after having the opportunity to speak to a number of people they do not believe the bite was from a shark.
"Whilst we cannot unequivocally say it is not a shark bite, those factors lead us to believe that this attack was from a toad fish," the statement read.
"Toad fish are known to frequent the waters of the Whitsundays, are often aggressive and are sometimes called "toe" fish as they occasionally attack feet and toes, usually only if provoked."