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Shark attacks California Instagram model in Bahamas

12 July 2018

She was in the Bahamas with her family and boyfriend.

An Instagram model has hit back at criticism from online trolls after being bitten by a shark while posing for photographs.

While in the water, Zarutskie, who is from California and heading to college in Miami, had her boyfriend's dad take photos of her surrounded by the sharks, which have become a local tourist attraction. "It just happened", Katarina Zarutskie says. She was swimming on Stanley Key Island, known for it's crystal clear water and normally docile nurse sharks.

She told BBC News, "From my previous knowledge from surfing and scuba diving, I know nurse sharks are usually very safe", adding that she has "seen countless photos of people with them on Instagram".

Ms Zarutskie then swam to shore as her arm bled. They didn't consider the nurse sharks a threat until one of them bit her and pulled her underwater.

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She said she managed to remain calm, holding her wrist above water and using her other hand to stop the flow of blood. She said she doesn't regret it and would do it again. Zaruskie said she did not see them.

Katarina Zarutskie holds her arm above her head after being bitten by a nurse shark in the Bahamas. Katarina posted them to social media, where she's been overwhelmed with comments asking for details.

She's since had to make her Instagram private, after people accused her of blaming the sharks and causing the situation herself, but she insists that's not the case.

To many, this might not seem like the smartest thing to be doing - it certainly wouldn't be most people's idea of a good time to jump into an enclosed bit of water with a load of sharks, but hey, each to their own. She went to the hospital to get treatment for her infected wounds.

'They are wild animals and it's an uncontrollable situation'. Despite her scars, the model said she has an even greater respect for nature.

Shark attacks California Instagram model in Bahamas