Two popular Sydney beaches were closed on Saturday after swimmers witnessed several bull sharks attack a dolphin, according to Surf Life Saving New South Wales.
The closures resulted in the cancellation of several surf, Ironman, and Ironwoman events.
The dolphin sustained injuries to its tail and was later euthanized, the organization said.
Lifesavers closed Manly and Shelly beaches where hundreds of people had gathered for the Manly Open Classic – a community event with Ironman competitions due to take place on Saturday.
“Surf lifeguards and lifeguards cleared swimmers and a major surfing carnival was suspended,” the organization wrote in a statement.
Drones operated by Surf Life Saving have spotted a number of sharks in the area, sources said.
Emily Pettersson told CNN affiliate Channel Nine that when she heard the dolphin had been injured, she went into the water.
“[The dolphin’s] The fin was mangled, you could see it was falling off and it also had a bite mark on the side of the body,” Pettersson said, adding that she wasn’t afraid to be in the water herself.
Summer of Surf General Manager Trent Goulding confirmed the cancellation of the Shaw and Partners Manly Surf Open in an Instagram video and apologized to those who showed up early to Manly Beach.
“We had huge shark activity in a nearby area… and we had to pause our entire event… we were on hold but unfortunately we will be canceling today’s event,” he said.
Goulding added that organizers will refund entries and vowed to implement additional protocols to mitigate these types of risks, e.g. B. Having a backup location at future events.