Fins on the Fourth: Sharks spotted circling near Pensacola Beach

A new shark video captured in northwest Florida is making the rounds on social media.

Not one, two, but three sharks were spotted circling the water just feet from the shore off Pensacola Beach.

“Just about any day of the week this time of year, I would place a bet that I could find a shark,” said Steve Luppert.

Luppert shot the drone video early Thursday morning.

“They were out there for maybe 45 minutes,” he said.

Luppert says the sharks are nothing to fear, but could not say the same about a bigger fish he spotted a few weeks ago.

“I would like to hope that I filmed a great white off Pensacola Beach,” said Luppert. “But, I don’t think that it was!”

The next day Luppert captured a sea turtle with a sizable chunk, missing from its shell.

“We’re going to need a bigger boat!” joked Luppert.

Despite the fact parts of a sequel to the iconic movie that continues to terrorize beachgoers today was shot in northwest Florida, Escambia County Water Safety Chief Dave Greenwood says we rarely see shark attacks.

“You’re more likely to drown out here then get attacked by [a] shark,” said Greenwood.

The last documented attack was in 2001, near the pass at Fort Pickens.

“Those inland waterways are the shark nurseries, the lower estuaries where the sharks go in to raise their young,” said Greenwood. “Also, you’ve got a large source of food coming in and out of the intercostal waterway changing the channel.”

A rash of shark attacks across the country in recent weeks does have some beachgoers on edge we just couldn’t find any!

“If it’s your time, you’ll get eaten!” Said Joe Graziano.

Graziano is visiting from Virginia, where great whites are a lot more common.

“My little son when he was a kid, (he’s a big guy now) we were out there and I was telling about sharks and we were joking around and he starts yelling shark, shark, shark! And I looked and it was dolphins going by, he saw the fin!” Recalled Graziano.

To avoid a shark encounter, Greenwood says stay out of the water, or don’t swim alone.

“The buddy system cuts your chances of getting a shark attack in half,” said Greenwood.

The real threat on Pensacola Beach during the summer months is the sun added Greenwood.

Heat exhaustion and other heat-related illnesses can occur within minutes, so stay hydrated and re-apply sunscreen as needed.



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