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Kayak fisherman's fright at the eye of the tiger

SHARK TALE: Sandy Beach man Wal Pemberton landed a tiger shark while fishing from his kayak off Arrawarra Headland.
SHARK TALE: Sandy Beach man Wal Pemberton landed a tiger shark while fishing from his kayak off Arrawarra Headland. Trevor Veale

WAL Pemberton knew exactly what he had caught as the shadow below his kayak rose to the surface after an epic battle of fin versus forearm.

Wal knew it was a shark and after a few more winds of the reel, he said there was no mistaking that distinctive striped pattern.

"Even when it was down deep I could tell it was a shark with a long tail," Wal said.

"I thought it could be a thresher shark expecting it could jump out of the water, but once it came closer and I saw the stripes and its large box head I knew it was a tiger shark.

"I'm guessing it was around six foot long, but I didn't want to get too close a look before we cut it loose.

Wal made the catch off Arrawarra Headland while fishing with his mate Ron McGeorge, who was able to get a series of photos of the shark after it surfaced.

"I had been trolling a dead slimy mackerel when I hooked up on it," he said.

"The shark had half a dozen runs it in.

"I would get it close to the kayak and off it would go again and I must have fought it more than an hour.

"I've caught a few bronzies (bronze whalers) and hammerheads, but never a tiger, I'm wondering if its the first caught from a kayak."

The tiger shark Wal Pemberton landed from his kayak off Arrawarra Headland.
The tiger shark Wal Pemberton landed from his kayak off Arrawarra Headland. Ron McGeorge

Topics:  arrawarra headland, cioffs harbour, fishing, kayak, tiger shark, wal pemberton


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