Byron Bay beaches open following shark attack

Byron Bay beaches are set to be reopened today following a shark attack on a surfer early yesterday morning.

Beaches in the area were closed for 24 hours after 36-year-old Jade Fitzpatrick suffered puncture wounds to his upper thigh, and his surfboard was bitten at Broken Head.

The NSW Primary Industries Minister Niall Blair says his department will fast-track a six-month trial of shark nets on the NSW north coast, after Premier Mike Baird announced the initiative last month.


Byron Shire Council opposes the trial because of concerns about marine life, and has called for better spotting programs instead.

Hundreds of protesters against the nets gathered in Ballina on Sunday, only 24-hours before the latest attack, which is the third in one month.


The species of the shark involved is yet to be identified, but a number of great whites were spotted in the area in the past week.