Beaches open but surfers, swimmers cautious after attack

BYRON'S beaches are officially open again following Tuesday's shark attack that killed 50-year-old Paul Wilcox.

"The council acted quickly and pro-actively to close beaches in the area following the tragedy and our lifeguards have been on duty to assist DPI and monitor for any ongoing hazards in the area," said northern region lifeguard co-ordinator Scott McCartney

The surf patrol season will officially start on Saturday September 20, but lifesavers and many lifeguard services will return to most beaches in the Northern Rivers this weekend.

Local surfers and swimmers have reacted cautiously after the shark attack.

"There are days when you won't go out - we call them "sharkie days", when the water is murky and it's overcast," Syl Reid, a member of the Winter Whales and the committee for the Ocean Swim Classic said.

"We swim at Main Beach every Sunday, but you don't think about sharks that much when you are out there.

"We're such a competitive bunch and there's a big group of us, so it's unlikely a shark would have a go at us.

"There is safety in numbers. If there's 20 of you swimming, you are much safer than if you are a lone swimmer or surfer. You are seen as more of a target on your own."

Neil Cameron of the Byron Bay Boardriders Club hits the surf every daybreak for two hours of surfing.

Are you afraid of being attacked by a shark?

This poll ended on 16 September 2014.

Yes. Especially after reading stories like this - 20%

No. I'm more worried about car crashes - 37%

Yes. We seem to hear more about attacks - 10%

No. There's more chance of being hit by lightning - 30%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

But on Wednesday morning after the fatal attack the day before at Clarkes Beach, he took a look at the water and decided against a morning surf.

"The surf wasn't looking good so I went with my gut instinct," Neil said.

"But I will be out there again."

Like many others dedicated to surfing, he believes the risks are worth it.

"People love surfing so much we just say 'que sera sera'."

"After this (attack) you are really aware that when you go into the water you are in the shark's environment and it can happen."

A poll running on this website shows just under a third of respondents fear being attacked by a shark while in the ocean.

However, 68% of the more than 700 people who have so far responded to the poll say they don't fear a shark attack, saying there is more chance of being hit by a car or being struck by lightning.

Topics:  attack byron bay editors picks shark

Back with Love and Violence

DOWN AGAIN: The Superjesus are Paul Berryman on drums, Sarah McLeod on lead vocals and Stuart Rudd on bass guitar.

The Superjesus are back after 13 years

Wall of help for Our Kids in hospitals

FUNDS RAISED: Our Kids co-ordinator Rebekka Battista with Woolworths Ballina Store manager Nori Bensley and the rest of the Northern Rivers Woolworths' staff at the handover of $54,772.

Donation helps keep kids closer to home

Tourism division welcomes inquiry into holiday letting

Parliamentary inquiry into short stay holiday lets has been welcomed by tourist body.

Opportunity to help grow and diversify regional tourism

Local Partners

Top floor teams take out The Block's terrace week

Kim and Chris pictured on their winning outdoor terrace in a scene from The Block.

RIVALS Kim and Chris and Julia and Sasha tie in final week of work.

Bob Dylan slammed as 'arrogant' for Nobel silence

Nobel Prize winner Bob Dylan.

Singer the controversial winner of literature Nobel

Shannen Doherty reveals fear of dying in post on chemo

Actor Shannen Doherty shared this image of her lying in a hospital bed after a chemotherapy session.

Actor has been fighting cancer since 2015

Eddie Redmayne's stage fright on latest Harry Potter film

Actor Eddie Redmayne stars in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

Actor felt like kid again when he got to film with a wand

Salma Hayek: 'Trump planted story because I turned him down'

Actor Salma Hayek is the latest woman who says U.S presidential nominee Donald Trump acted inappropriately.

Salma Hayek latest woman to accuse Trump of misconduct

Brisbane snake catcher shows who's the Boss

Brisbane snake catcher Julia Baker returns in season two of Snake Boss.

Hit show Snake Boss is back for another season

Hit songwriter's Noosa mansion on market

SPECIAL PLACE: The Cintamani estate is going to tender, marketed by Tom Offermann Real Estate.

Is this Queensland's best property?

Kiwi siblings snap up Dotcom mansion for $32.5m

The new toy company owners of the Coatesville mansion want replace any controversy with positivity and fun. Photo / Barfoot and Thompson

The trio paid $32.5 million for the property in June

New $200 million development will create 580 jobs

Cassie And Josh with baby Alfie and daughter Andee. They have bought at new Lennox Head development Epiq.

Majority of new positions will be given to Northern Rivers locals

Cherrabah's mega resort plans axed

PLANS for a massive development at Cherrabah have been scrapped.

Dusit Thani finance crisis 'just a small hiccup'

ON TRACK: Springfield Land Chairman, Maha Sinnathamby, Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale, Developer Richard Turner and Springfield Land Deputy Chairman, Bob Sharpless, at the recent resort sod turning ceremony.

Property developer says project remains firmly on track

Heavyweight enters real estate market

Des Besanko principal and director of Raine and Horne Springfield.

Major rebranding which has seen two big name brands merge