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Florida leads world in people bitten by sharks - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

Florida leads world in people bitten by sharks

America leads the world in shark bites, the most of which happen in Florida. (Source: WESH/CNN) America leads the world in shark bites, the most of which happen in Florida. (Source: WESH/CNN)

BREVARD COUNTY, FL (WESH/CNN) - America leads the world in shark attacks and Florida is by far the state where people most frequently have unpleasant encounters with the animals.

According to the University of Florida, there were 80 reported shark attacks worldwide, and 53 were in the U.S. Almost half of the American attacks happened in the Sunshine State. Of the 26 people bitten in Florida, eight were in Brevard County - home of Melbourne, Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral.

It's the first time in years that Volusia County, home to the world-famous Daytona Beach, has not led the state in shark bites.

There were seven deaths from shark bites last year, which is down from the previous year.

Most shark attacks are minor and only require a few stitches if that.

"I didn't even know I was bit," said surfing instructor Tony Perez. "I just felt like someone was pulling on my leg. They kind of gave a little taste. Once they get the taste and they don't like it, they let go. So most of the time it's just puncture wounds."

Copyright 2013 WESH/CNN. All rights reserved.

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