A woman is in hospital after being bitten by a shark while swimming at Merimbula on the far South Coast of NSW.
The 63-year-old was attacked by a shark at Main Beach at about 7:00am and received lacerations to her hip, back and buttocks, according to paramedics.
She was taken to South East Regional Hospital and is in a stable condition.
Bystanders had reported seeing fins and a large animal, Inspector Robert Whitney from NSW ambulance said, but there was uncertainty initially if the attack had been caused by a shark.
“It was pretty clear that it had been a shark attack as paramedics arrived on scene,” he said.
“What we could see is that the patient suffered multiple wounds in what would have been a terrifying event, paramedics did a fantastic job in treating the patient down at the beach before transporting to hospital.”
Surf lifesavers said the woman had been swimming with a friend close to shore when she was “bumped” in the back by the shark.
Her friend assisted her to shore and called emergency services.
Thirty kilometres of beaches surrounding Merimbula and Pambula will be closed for 24 hours while investigations continue to confirm the size and type of shark.
Surf lifesaving drones will be launched to conduct surveillance of the waters off Merimbula, with the Department of Primary Industries also monitoring marine activity.