Worldwide Shark Attack Summary for 2022

By The Florida Museum of Natural History.

The Florida Museum of Natural History’s International Shark Attack File investigated 108 alleged shark-human interactions worldwide in 2022. ISAF confirmed 57 unprovoked shark bites on humans and 32 provoked bites.

Classification Total
Unprovoked Bites 57
Provoked Bites 32
Boat Bites 4
Scavenge 4
Air/Sea Disaster 2
Public Aquaria 1
Doubtful 3
No assignment could be made 3
Not Confirmed 2
Total Cases 108

“Unprovoked bites” are defined as incidents in which a bite on a live human occurs in the shark’s natural habitat with no human provocation of the shark.

“Provoked bites” occur when a human initiates interaction with a shark in some way. These include instances when divers are bitten after harassing or trying to touch sharks, bites on spearfishers, bites on people attempting to feed sharks, bites occurring while unhooking or removing a shark from a fishing net and so forth.

Learn about other bite classification descriptions

Of the remaining 19 cases, four involved bites to motorized or non-motorized marine vessels (“boat bites”), two sea disasters where victim’s boats sank, and four involved shark-inflicted post-mortem bites (“scavenge”). Three cases were regarded as “doubtful,” or incidents that likely did not involve a shark. These included one case attributed to a bluefish and one collision with a shark.

In three cases, the nature of the incident was unclear with the available data (“No assignment could be made”). An additional two cases could not be confirmed as a shark-human interaction (“Not confirmed”). ISAF will continue to investigate these cases in collaboration with local law enforcement and medical professionals until they can be resolved satisfactorily.

The 2022 Global Total of Unprovoked Shark Bites Significantly Lower than Average

Country Total Fatal
USA 41 1
Australia 9 0
Egypt 2 2
South Africa 2 2
Brazil 1 0
New Zealand 1 0
Thailand 1 0
Worldwide 57 5

The 2022 worldwide total of 57 confirmed unprovoked cases is lower than the most recent five-year (2017-2021) average of 70 incidents annually. There were nine shark-related fatalities this year, five of which are assigned as unprovoked. This number is in line with the 5 year annual global average of six unprovoked fatalities per year.

Annual fluctuations in shark-human interactions are common. Despite 2021’s spike in fatalities, 2022 was a return to typical long-term trends which show a decreasing number of annual fatalities. Year-to-year variability in oceanographic, socioeconomic and meteorological conditions significantly influences the local abundance of sharks and humans in the water.

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