Rainbow Haven Beach, situated in Cow Bay, N.S., saw a bustling crowd today, yet the recent shark sighting still lingered in the discussions among the beachgoers.
Many had received warnings about the occurrence. “My inbox was filled with messages cautioning me about visiting Rainbow,” shared Amanda Porro, a regular visitor. “Despite the apprehensions, we decided to swing by, mainly to soak in the beach atmosphere without necessarily entering the water.”
Stacey MacLean, another beachgoer, weighed in, “Shark sightings aren’t particular to Rainbow Haven. These aquatic predators make their presence felt along most of our coastlines.”
Sunday’s sighting was confirmed by Jennifer Hood, the South West Shore area supervisor of Nova Scotia’s Lifeguard Service, who was present at Rainbow Haven for the Canadian Surf Lifesaving Championship. “I witnessed the fin making its way into the channel just adjacent to the beach. It remained above the surface until it disappeared from sight,” Hood recollected.
According to Hood, the sighting lasted for approximately 10 minutes before she informed the on-duty lifeguard, adhering to standard procedure.
“When a sighting occurs, we suggest people exit the water while we close the beach for two hours. We spend this time monitoring the location very closely,” affirmed Paul D’Eon, the director of Nova Scotia Lifeguard Service.
Highlighting that shark sightings are more prevalent around Yarmouth and St. Mary’s Bay, along the southwest coast, D’Eon reassured the public of their safety. “Our supervised beaches have maintained an unaffected record of safety against shark attacks for our fifty-first season now,” he stated.
He reported that usually, three to four sightings are documented at supervised beaches during the summers. Interestingly, the recent appearance at Rainbow Haven was the third one this year.
With a rise in sightings, Porro brought forth a crucial point. “It’s clear the sharks are here to stay. If the fear of them keeps us from the water, it would be quite unfortunate for us Canadians, who proudly take to our Ocean Playground.”
D’Eon suggested a protocol for those who happen to notice a shark. Inform anyone nearby in the waters and then, everyone should remain on the beach for a few hours, offering the creature the time to swim away.