Mullet fish draw sharks to Volusia Co. beach waters



VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. - Purple flags fly most often to warn swimmers of jellyfish or Man o' War in Volusia County, but now large schools of mullet fish are the concern.

The tiny bait fish are drawing sharks near the shore.

"One went by and there was a school of sharks right behind them," said a witness.

Officials say there have been reports of both mullet and sharks from Ormond down to New Smyrna Beach.

High school football player Raushod Floyd was bitten by a shark in Ormond Beach on Labor Day. Floyd said he won't go back in the water, others said they don't mind it.

"It doesn't keep me out of the water, it just makes me more observant, you know, look for those shadows and if so, just kind of slowly back out," said beachgoer Kevin, who didn't want to divulge his last name.

Officials with Beach Safety Ocean Rescue are advising people to do just that.

"If you see a lot of bait fish in the water and they're jumping out of the water, get out of that water temporarily or if you see birds diving in a particular area of water feeding on the fish; then I would stay away from those areas as well," Capt. Tammy Marris of Volusia Beach Safety Ocean Rescue said.

There haven't been reports of very large sharks. Officials said most of the time the sharks are only after the bait fish and only bite humans when they are mistaken for food.