Man diving off the coast of Cornwall bitten by blue shark

A snorkeler has suffered a leg injury after reportedly being bitten by a blue shark off the coast of Cornwall.

The incident is believed to have happened during an organised trip at lunchtime on Thursday 28 July.

A Maritime Coastguard Agency spokesperson said a coastguard team went to Penzance Harbour to pass the casualty into the care of an ambulance.

Blue Shark Snorkel, the company that organised the tour, said such incidents were “extremely rare”.

It reported that the person injured had found it “very scary” and had “thanked everyone for their amazing actions” to get them quickly and calmly back to shore.

On its Facebook page Blue Shark Snorkel said: “As we know, these things can happen when we choose to interact with wild animals in their own environment.”

On its website, the company said it offered “the chance to have up close and interactive encounters with blue sharks in their natural environment”.

The statement added: “We immediately enacted our emergency response plan, with first aid being carried out on the person involved.

“Following advice and assessment from the coastguard, the person walked off the boat and received further treatment ashore.”

Blue sharks visit the UK during the summer months from the Caribbean, and are known to mainly feed on small fish and squid, but have been known to attack seabirds and other small sharks, according to the Wildlife Trusts.