Great White Shark That Killed Mom in Waist-High Water Appeared Through Wave

A great white shark that killed a mom in waist-high water appeared through a wave before it attacked.

Kimon Bisogno, 39, had been on a Plettenberg Bay beach in South Africa on Monday with her husband and young daughter. She had been wading through waist deep water when the great white shark, thought to be nearly 13-feet long, appeared through a wave and attacked, GB News reported.

Witnesses said the water "turned red" as people nearby screamed for help. The great white approached Bisogno quickly and seized her in its teeth, according to news.com. She was then dragged underwater.

Rescuers and police services responded at 7.53 a.m, and recovered Bisogno's remains about 50 yards away from where the attack occurred, a statement from the National Sea Rescue Institute said.

Great white shark
A stock photo shows a great white shark baring its teeth. A great white killed a mom in waist-high water in South Africa. Peter_Nile/Getty

Great white sharks can be found in waters around South Africa but they are particularly abundant off the Western Cape in the winter months.

Experts believe this is down to a sardine "feeding frenzy." During the winter, billions of sardines use the cold ocean waters to breed. This attracts great whites to the area to feed.

According to local media outlets, an eyewitness to the attack on Bisogno said numerous people were taking an early morning swim at the time.

"I just heard lots of screaming and saw people running out of the water. I guessed it was a shark attack but I was quite a way away and then the lifeboat turned up," the eyewitness said. "I then heard a woman had been attacked while swimming only two or three waves out so it was quite shallow but it was said nothing could be done to help her."

Great white sharks have been involved in more attacks than any other shark species. Despite this, attacks remain relatively rare. It is not clear why the sharks occasionally target humans, as they do not actively hunt them.

South Africa's National Sea Rescue Institute says there has been more shark activity than usual this year, although the attack on Bisogno was deemed "very unusual."

According to International Shark Attack File, South Africa has experienced 37 fatal shark attacks since 1997.

In May, the local council approved plans to conduct research on a shark barrier at the beach where the attack happened. This will help officials learn more about sharks and what causes them to attack, the National Rescue Institute said.

"Bitou Municipality has also established a shark committee to work with experienced private sector personnel to assist with limiting such incidents," the statement said. "Condolences are conveyed to the family of the deceased female."

Newsweek has contacted the National Sea Rescue Institute for comment.