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Shark attacks in Vietnam waters?


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23 replies to this topic

#1 20DowntheDrain

Posted 23 July 2011 - 08:05 PM

Does Vietnam have many incidents of shark attacks? I like ocean swimming, but I get nervous in water where sharks are known to feed. :rolleyes:

#2 RacNamman

Posted 24 July 2011 - 12:29 AM

As far as I know almost none, or none that I have heard of anyway, Nha Trang is awesome, Sailing Club is a great bar on the beach, watched the World Cup last year on a giant screen with the South China Sea as a backdrop

#3 kzam

Posted 24 July 2011 - 06:06 AM

Dont worry :rolleyes:
The shark is only appear at beach of Qui Nhơn-Bình Định and people cant see them at another beachs (Nha Trang,Đà Nẵng,Huế,Nghệ An,Vũng Tàu....)
The scientists said that there are many reefs near Qui Nhon's beach,the shark usually like to live in there.

#4 20DowntheDrain

Posted 24 July 2011 - 06:29 AM

Thanks kzam. Vietnam has beautiful beaches and coastline and I can't wait to enjoy them and do some swimming. I've swum in the Atlantic Ocean from NY to Florida. My biggest fear was swimming the Ironman in Florida because I definitely saw large fish and the area is known for shark attacks - and when you wear a wetsuit you look like a seal. The East coast of US is not as bad as California and Australia. Anyway, one of the first things I would like to do when I visit VN is to swim - just wanted to check on the shark situation.

#5 cageface

Posted 24 July 2011 - 06:35 AM

I have a feeling the incessant noise of jetskis and motorboats on the beach in Nha Trang keep a lot of animals away.

There are actually some much prettier (and less crowded) beaches a short drive up or down the coast from here though.

#6 20DowntheDrain

Posted 24 July 2011 - 06:53 AM

I wonder if the noise makes a huge impressions on sharks, may even attract them. I'm still waiting for the Shark feast to occur during an Ironman. You have two thousand seal looking creatures floundering around a half mile off shore...it may be inevitable.

You'd have a better chance of finiding a spot of iceberg amongst mating bull seals then you would of finding a private spot of sand on an eastcoast beach in the US. Vietnam is a paradise from what I see, even at the most famous beaches at the height of tourist season.

Girls in bikinis, seafood on a grill, and people everywhere (but not in the US sense) is fine with me - just don't want to lose limbs to a shark; limbs are all I have, the ex will have taken everything else. :rolleyes:

Edited by 20DowntheDrain, 24 July 2011 - 06:54 AM.


#7 mik0

Posted 24 July 2011 - 09:16 AM

ive been diving in nha trang bay yesterday and today (and tomorrow) The biggest thing in the water is us, then small reef fish (wrasse, parrots, clowns etc) No one has reported seeing a shark in the waters. Not enough food for them, unless they eat coral and sea urchins.

#8 20DowntheDrain

Posted 25 July 2011 - 09:28 PM

I found a few articles on shark attacks in VN. The first two are in regard to Quy Nhon beach. Not surprising, the times of these attacks since they are prime time for feeding sharks. Ten attacks occurred at Quy Nhon. I don't recall if this particular article mentions all of these attacks.
One Ton Shark Netted at "Shark Attack" Beach

Another article on Quy Nhon:
Suspected Shark Attacks Three in Central Vietnam!

Local officials put out a bounty for capturing the shark responsible for the attacks, but this one turned out not to be the culprit:
Posted Image

This particular article is in dispute by the VN government, but no surprise there since sharks and tourism don't pair well:

"Vietnam and Egypt had unusually high numbers of attacks this year, said George Burgess at the University of Florida in Gainesville, curator of the International Shark Attack File. While he could not speak to why Vietnam experienced so many attacks, his trip to Egypt revealed there had been illegal offshore dumping of sheep guts as well as overt feeding of fish that lured sharks into the area, which helped lead to subsequent attacks. Also, water temperatures there were unusually high, which might have somehow put the sharks on edge, Burgess suggested."
Shark Attacks Hit 10 Year High

I think it wouldn't be unreasonable to be cautious swimming in areas that are heavily fished with nets (e.g. distressed fish), or areas were food waste and animal carcasses are known to be regularly discarded.

Edited by 20DowntheDrain, 25 July 2011 - 09:38 PM.


#9 britmaveric

Posted 25 July 2011 - 09:32 PM

From what I know I think biggest baddest thing in Nha Trang is moray eel. I'll let you know in a few months! :rolleyes:

#10 RacNamman

Posted 25 July 2011 - 09:35 PM

Well i've been swimming in the sea for decades and never been bit yet

#11 20DowntheDrain

Posted 25 July 2011 - 09:43 PM

Me too. But one of the first things on my list when I get to VN is swimming. And with my luck as of late, I'll be the first American to be eaten by a shark in VN.  :rolleyes:

#12 britmaveric

Posted 25 July 2011 - 09:48 PM

More like female variety with long black hair.  :unsure: :rolleyes:

#13 20DowntheDrain

Posted 25 July 2011 - 09:58 PM

The beaches are still relatively quite in VN, but as tourism increases and the sharks get word of lots of plump Westerners bobbing up and down along the coast, well...

View Postbritmaveric, on 25 July 2011 - 09:48 PM, said:

More like female variety with long black hair.  :unsure: :rolleyes:

I'd be curious to see these statistics.  :wacko:

#14 englishmaninhcm

Posted 26 July 2011 - 03:32 AM

Vietnamese people tell me not to worry about sharks around popular beach areas as the local fisherman catch them to eat/sell so i wouldn;t expect the population to be that high.

If you are coming here and want to do swimming, 2 places you should definetly visit are mui ne and Phu Quoc, both have spectacular beaches and sea. Much better than Nha trang or Vung Tau.

Edited by englishmaninhcm, 26 July 2011 - 03:35 AM.


#15 20DowntheDrain

Posted 26 July 2011 - 04:49 AM

Both locations look nice, especially Phu Quoc which I'm glad to see is near Cambodia.

Here's a picture of a shark on the beach at Mui ne. Not sure if it's a blacktip or a blacktip reef shark, the former is a bit more aggressive. I prefer swimming in the kind of surf that can be seen in this photo opposed to the calmer/stiller water that seems to be the case in Nha trang. The reason I brought up the shark question is because swimming a mile or two along the coast can be a bit more perilous than simply doing and out and back from the shore.

Posted Image

Edited by 20DowntheDrain, 26 July 2011 - 04:51 AM.


#16 RacNamman

Posted 26 July 2011 - 07:41 AM

Yes Phu Quoc is lovely, so near to Cambodia in fact, that the Cambodians claim it as their own. However in response to Cambodian claims, the Viets built a military base on it, this doesn't seem to have affected the beaches and stuff in any way however.

A nice route from say Thailand to Phu Quoc, avoiding cities, is to travel from Bangkok to Trat and Visit Koh Chang, which is a stunning island. Then cross the nearby coastal border into Cambodia and travel via Koh Kong to Sihanoukville, which is a fine beach resort with casinos and around 11 neighbouring islands if you want very affordable escapism to desert islands with just a few bungalows on them. Then travel to the Viet border along the coast past Kampot and Kep. Kep is a fascinating little place with tons of derelict French colonial mansions littered about the place as well as wonderful crab. Then cross the border into Ha Tien, Viet Nam, not much there, but you can travel through the Mekong delta area to get to Rach Gia, which is a beautiful little city, with almost no foreigners, and incredibly friendly people. In fact the only foreigners you see in Rach Gia are the ones catching the ferries to Phu Quoc.

As for sharks you will see plenty of those when you cross the border in Cambodia, of the Greater Nasty Cambo Taxi Scammers species, followed by the Vietnamese Border Wallet Snappers when you cross into Ha Tien.

It's a great route , avoiding, Phnom Penh, Saigon and even Bangkok itself if you catch the Trat bus that leaves direct from the bus stop at Suvarnibhum airport. There is a lot of bus rides in that route but, all split up into bite sized chunks and visiting so many beaches and islands, you can't go wrong.

#17 mik0

Posted 26 July 2011 - 07:57 AM

I'd say the best people who know whats in the waters will be at the dive shops.
Don't worry about the sharks, if they bite you, give em a bite back  :unsure: and thats why you go diving with a buddy, Pick one who looks more appealing to a shark :rolleyes:

#18 TizMe

Posted 26 July 2011 - 12:32 PM

and always carry a dive knife.... its not to defend yourself against the shark.... its to stab your buddy with, so that the shark is more attracted to them than to you.  :rolleyes:

#19 britmaveric

Posted 26 July 2011 - 12:34 PM

Or practice underwater punching - make sure you smack the shark in nose. :unsure:  (mind the teeth though)  :rolleyes:

#20 mik0

Posted 26 July 2011 - 03:09 PM

I remember mythbusters trying out punching sharks in the nose. I can't remember the result though. Failing that you can always get those electronic shark repellants that make a small (electric/magnetic?) field around you that makes it uncomfortable for them to be in.

#21 britmaveric

Posted 26 July 2011 - 03:15 PM

tried to do with a mechanical arm - didnt work too well.

#22 20DowntheDrain

Posted 26 July 2011 - 04:43 PM

View Postmik0, on 26 July 2011 - 07:57 AM, said:

I'd say the best people who know whats in the waters will be at the dive shops.
Don't worry about the sharks, if they bite you, give em a bite back  :unsure: and thats why you go diving with a buddy, Pick one who looks more appealing to a shark :rolleyes:

Thanks mik0, checking with the dive shops is a good idea, even for currents and other local hazards.

I was talking about distance swimming - you jokers. If I were diving I probably wouldn't mind seeing a shark or two, depending on the species. While swimming, no thanks.

I guess I could ask Tiz and Brit to go with me... they'd have to agree to cover themselves with tuna blood first and swim at least a couple of hundred meters behind me.  :wacko:

Edited by 20DowntheDrain, 26 July 2011 - 04:51 PM.


#23 britmaveric

Posted 26 July 2011 - 04:47 PM

Nice spear gun will work well - mind you just hope not a school of sharks around. :rolleyes:

#24 20DowntheDrain

Posted 26 July 2011 - 05:20 PM

You're talking about that other species again, right? So the speargun is for the beach.  :rolleyes:


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