ST AUGUSTINE, Fla -- A man is recovering at the hospital Friday after he was attacked by a shark in St Augustine Beach and he had the shark tooth in his foot to prove it!
It happened Thursday morning while he was surfing. These last few days have been a surfer's dream. The storm that was Hurricane Leslie is bringing high waves to the St Augustine shoreline. But a day out on the water became more like a nightmare for Andrew Birchall.
"I've been surfing 30 years and I never expected to get bitten by a shark," he said.
From his hospital bed, Birchall, remembers vividly his terrifying encounter in the water.
"It was pretty vicious and it was intense and the pressure was extreme. It kind of felt like someone was hitting me with a sledgehammer. Once I pulled my foot out of the water I could see the teeth marks."
He had no doubt it was a shark. And looking at pictures of his wounds, you can clearly see marks from three rows of teeth. But the real confirmation came after doctors took a closer look.
"There was a tooth stuck in there. That was one of the things they had to go get. When they did the x-rays the found it."
The tooth was sent away for testing. And doctors re-attached his severed tendons with wires. While the scars will always be there, he'd like to get that tooth back as a memory of his shark-attack escape.
"It'd be cool to have it. If I had it it would definitely add to the story of being able to say that's what he left behind."
Birchall will stay at Flagler Hospital through the weekend. Then he has to stay off his foot for four week. Doctors are hopeful he will get all the movement back in his toes.