Police shoot great white shark but can't save swimmer - video
New Zealand man killed by four-metre predator in attack off the coast near Auckland
A NEW ZEALAND film-maker has died in a shark attack off the coast near the city of Auckland despite the dramatic efforts of police and coastguards who shot at the four-metre long great white from rescue boats and a helicopter.
Adam Strange was swimming 200 metres off Muriwai Beach, to the west of Auckland, when he was attacked. He has become the first confirmed shark fatality in New Zealand waters since 1976.
Fishermen who witnessed the attack on the 47-year-old said several sharks appeared to join in, and told how the sea turned red.
After realising that Strange had been attacked, the fishermen called the emergency services. A spokesman confirmed that police fired at the largest shark, believed to be a great white, which "rolled over and disappeared".
However, they were unable to save Strange and his body was later recovered from the water by helicopter as other sharks circled the scene. New Zealand website Stuff reported that three of the lifeguards who helped recover Strange's remains knew him. The men were shocked by the size of the main shark, which was also caught on camera by a TV helicopter.
The Daily Mail says that Strange was a respected maker of music videos and short films. Aphrodite’s Farm won the 2009 Crystal Bear award at the Berlin Film Festival.
Shark deaths are rare in the area where Strange was killed. But there were 11 fatal attacks around the world last year and authorities in Western Australia became so concerned about the threat to swimmers that they announced plans to hunt and kill sharks that come too close to shore.
Beaches around the city of Auckland are currently closed.