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Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

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Woodstock, Maryland
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400 posts
4 reviews
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Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

Does anyone know if someone has ever been bitten by a shark or other sea creatures on the Fort Jefferson Dry Tortugas excursion?

I am a little apprehensive about doing this trip/

Key Colony Beach...
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for Florida Keys
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1. Re: Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

"Ever"? Thats a long time to cover.

Marathon, Florida
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for Marathon, Islamorada
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2. Re: Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

Really? If sharks were an issue you would see us warning you all over this forum to NOT GO IN THE WATER!!! There would be warning after warning and even more warnings. Every day in Key west and the Keys there are 1000's swimming, kayaking, wading, snorkeling, diving and more in the water without incident. Relax, my friend!

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3. Re: Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

I have never heard of a problem with sharks at Fort Jefferson.


Nashville, TN
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4. Re: Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

You don't have to get in the water if you go out to the Fort, but I highly recommend that you do.

Baltimore, MD
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159 posts
12 reviews
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5. Re: Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

don't make fun of her, blue. alot of us gals are just not into meeting big old fish while swimming. a couple of years ago we rented a house on sunset key. expensive with a decent beach. they had a (what looked like a net, but wasn't) so i felt okay. then i got surrounded by two tarpon that literally scared the bejeesus out of me. they are not pretty creatures. well, i don't think anyone has seen a fifty some year old high tail it out of the water as fast as i did. when my husband and i were on our honeymoon in south beach, he was half in the bag and wanted to take a swim in the dark. he knows i am fearful of sharks, but i decided to go in with him to save his fool self, if i could. i finally dragged him out and beat him with a beach towel the entire way back to the hotel. and don't even get me started with when we vacation at the outer banks and everyone wants to swim at night. i literally freak out. the funny thing is i grew up on the water and swam my heart out for years, but these big guys scare me.

In the Country, NY
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for Surf City
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6. Re: Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

There are sea creatures all over the sea....Well along with that wealth of knowledge I just gave you, I will tell you a personal experience I just had in the Keys.

A group of us went out on a snorkel/dive adventure and we were in a small group (maybe 20). Not at Fort Jefferson, but on a reef trip up the Keys, no review given yet. We were given the standard warning of the dangers, touching the coral, swimming away from the group, jellyfish, plus many more. We were also told of the fish and other sea creatures that we may see, sharks included. Well to make a looong story short, we did see everything that was mentioned, along with an eel, sharks and other things nightmares are made of,. The sharks that were swimming with with us, paid no attention to us, along with the other fish. Jellyfish were plentiful , and one silly gal was stung on our trip, but that was the only incident, besides a lot of sunburns. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.

So, if you really want to go to Ft. Jefferson, or anywhere out on the water, go, you won't regret it, and in my opinion, shark bites are the least of your worries.

Let us know how you did.

Chester County, PA
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7. Re: Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

You only have to worry about sharks at Ricks after 11 pm.

Los Angeles
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8. Re: Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

There is no reason to be afraid of sharks, especially when there are only a few species that are dangerous. The ones you might see are totally harmless as long as you don't do something silly, like trying to touch them. Stop in at the Key West Aquarium for the tour where they show you the bite power of nurse sharks and let you touch one too.

I saw 2 big nurse sharks, about 6 feet long, laying on the bottom while out at Ft. Jefferson. They make great photo subjects, as they don't move at all! Much easier than trying to photograph those reef sharks out at Looe Key.

And as usual, it's likely that you're most in danger of getting hurt by a bad sunburn, so keep applying lots of sunscreen before and after going in the water.

Fort Myers Beach...
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9. Re: Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

Sharks ? Not an isue.

Jelly Fish and Man-O-War ? Now that hurts ?

Aston, Pennsylvania
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10. Re: Fort Jefferson Shark Bites?

MaryMarg- We use to vacation in Corolla in the Outer Banks in Oct. and many times my brother in law and I were the only people in the water for miles. I always made sure he was the furtherest out so he could be first pickings. We havent been back for a few years but I did hear on TV once that there had been a shark attack (this was in the summer) at the Pine Island area of Corolla. Thats were we use to stay. I too am a shark weenie. We're going to the Turks and Caicos in Oct where snorkling is the main entertainment. The best reef area is right off the beach of the villa where we're staying but I cant help but be a bit worried but wont let it keep me from going in. It's just that were not in the resort part and we will have that part of the reef pretty much to ourselves.