A middle-aged man attacked by a shark off the Taranaki coast just on dusk last night was patched up by a couple of vets before heading off to see a doctor.
Peter Garrett, a New Zealander who has lived in Ireland for the past 15 years, was surfing 100m offshore at the Arawhata Rd surf break a few kilometres north of Opunake when he was mauled about 7pm.
Mr Garrett, home on a three-month holiday, suffered 10 lacerations, about 2cm deep, but was able to paddle clear.
Matt Thomas and James Bruce, who work as vets in Manaia and Eltham respectively, were surfing nearby when they saw and heard Mr Garrett panicking.
"I heard him shrieking, he was freaking out and thrashing around," Mr Bruce said. "He kind of kicked it off him and went in on the next couple of waves and went straight for the rocks."
The men followed Mr Garrett ashore when the shark turned its attention toward them.
"We came in when it started circling us," Mr Thomas said. "It nudged my mate Brucey and tried to get his fins. Then I was like, bugger this, I'm going in." Read More