Maui, Hawaii - 22 December 2005: Shark Attacks Man Off Maui

Jonathan Genant (of San Diego) was alone when a shark attacked Wednesday hundreds of yards off Keawakapu Beach on 22 December. "His jaws were just humongous," he told CBS correspondent Keahi Tucker from his hospital bed on Maui. "I heard the bones snap. From that point, I just — I knew I was in trouble."

Genant lost part of his pinky but is expected to recover. The CBS News story is here. The San Francisco Chronicle story is here, and the Sacramento Bee covers it here.

Seaside, OR - 19 December 2005: Great White Shark Attacks Surfer

Thirty-six year old Brian Anderson was surfing near Tillamook Head, south of Seaside, when he felt something grab his leg. "As a surfer, it's your worst nightmare to get attacked by one of those things," he said. He punched the ten-foot shark near the eye — a tactic he says he learned by watching Shark Week on the Discovery Channel — and it released him. He suffered relatively minor injuries to his ankle.

The Washington Post has the AP story.

Bloemfontein, South Africa - 18 December 2005: Robber's Fatal Mistake; Flees Into Zoo Tiger Enclosure

Visitors to the Bloemfontein Zoo on Sunday (18 December) saw more than they had bargained for. A man was found dead in the tiger's enclosure, with bite marks at the back of his neck and all his clothes torn off. Although they had recently been fed and did not devour the victim, the tigers had mauled the man and dragged him through the water.

Police believe "the man was involved in a robbery and was chased by security guards. He had nowhere to go so he jumped over the zoo fence," according to Elsa Gerber, a police spokesperson. The story is covered by SABCNews.com here and here, and also here, and by the Associated Press (via the San Francisco Chronicle) here.

Cary, IL - 5 November 2005: Pit Bull Pack Mauls 6 in Extended Attack

Three pit bulls rampaged and injured 6 people in this Chicago suburb on Saturday, 5 November. The attack was apparently triggered when children going door-to-door for a fundraiser arrived at the home of Scott Sword, 41, who owned the dogs. One child is in critical condition after the attack, which continued for fifteen minutes.

"They just coming in biting and just biting hard, shaking their heads," said Jim Malone, a witness.

Stories from the San Francisco Chronicle and ABC7Chicago.com.

Calgary, AB (Canada) - 3 November 2005: Brad Pitt Claims Bear Attacked Him

We report, you decide. While this story seems to be an attempt to generate publicity for Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie — there are apparently no witnesses — it may be true. Pitt claims he returned to his Canadian vacation home to find two grizzlies rummaging through his kitchen, and called the local authorities. Story (from the UK's Life Style Extra) here.

Half Moon Bay, CA - 3 November 2005: Shark Attack Leaves Surfer OK, Tooth in Surfboard

A 25-year-old man survived a close call with a shark Wednesday evening (2 November.) Tim West said he was surfing Mavericks, the world-famous surf break off this city about 30 miles south of San Francisco, when the shark came up directly beneath him and knocked him about 2 feet into the air. He was unharmed but the attack left a tooth in his board.

"It makes you think twice, but it's going to happen — it's shark season," said another local surfer, Libby Grestin.

Indeed. Experts are surprised there have not been more recent shark attacks in the area because great whites are usually close to shore this time of year searching for food. Read stories from Global Surf News, KRON-4, KSBWChannel.com, and NBC17.com.

3 November 2005: Pit Bull Update

DENVER: Gregg Jones, 10, was in his back yard on 2 November when three pit bulls - his family pets - attacked and mauled him. Denver has enacted a controversial breed ban, as has Aurora, a suburb - but Aurora's ban will not become effective until Jan 1, 2006. The Rocky Mountain News and WRAL of Raleigh, NC cover the story. D Mahoney and Wayne F tipped us off.

WASHINGTON DC: According to NBC4.com, a girl apparently became enraged and unleashed her dog 3 November after a restaurant sold a burrito she had already purchased to another man. The dog was eventually taken away.

UKIAH, CA: Two pit bulls apparently invaded a fenced area Sat., 29 Oct. and killed a small pet. This story is from the Ukiah Daily.

MONMOUTH, IL: Reviewatlas.com reports that two pit bulls attacked and injured a man and later badly mauled a miniature horse in this town about thirty miles south of the Quad Cities.

Maranhão, Brazil - 3 November 2005: Rabid Vampire Bats Kill 23

Residents of marshy areas in the rain forest have suffered a spate of attacks by blood-sucking vampire bats. From the story on almendhar.com:

Mass attacks on humans have occurred in other cattle regions in Latin America when the cattle are suddenly removed, denying the bats their normal food.

The bats typically feed on mammalian blood.

Stories in Times (UK), the New Scientist, and the BBC. AAF thanks correspondent D Mahoney for this tip.

California - 1 November 2005: Deer Attacks Puzzle Wildlife Officials

Two recent deer attacks against people and three against neighborhood pets have prompted California wildlife officials to warn people to keep their distance from the wild animals.

In one of these attacks, a male deer attacked Ron Dudek, 73, in Rancho Santa Fe in Southern California as he was picking tomatoes in his garden on Sept. 25. The 6-foot-tall buck charged out of a patch of shrubbery and gored Dudek in the face before running off. Dudek was rushed to the hospital. He received 220 stitches for the wounds, but died from a pulmonary blood clot resulting from the encounter in mid-October. (See this San Francisco Chronicle story or this story in the Lake County, CA Record-Bee for more information.)

The Animal Attack Files commends ABCNEWS.COM reporter Amanda Onion for this special report.

(The photo, of an attack in Orinda, CA, is credited to Louis Pimentel.)

Junagadh, India - October 31 2005: Leopard Attacks Family In Home

“I was having breakfast with my family when a leopard suddenly rushed into our house and before we could do anything attacked us,

Johannesburg - 31 October 2005: Seal Attacks Woman, Bites off Nose

Cape fur seals are common on South African shores. This particular female "had been lying in the same spot since Friday, so the lady and a few other people were trying to take it back to the water,

San Francisco - 29 October 2005: SF Chronicle Sunday Magazine Highlights Pit Bull Politics

Numerous high profile dog attacks in San Francisco mean the city's newspaper readers flock to stories about this issue. The Chronicle put the Pit Bull - and the controversy over a possible breed ban - on the front page of their Sunday Magazine section this week. Although not all of the material in the issue is available through this link, it is a good place to start.

Shizuoka, Japan - 25 October 2005: Brown Bear Attacks, Kills Zookeeper

Tomohiro Tamura, 34, who had been in charge of bears for three and a half years at the zoo, was pronounced dead at a hospital from blood loss, the police said. He had suffered injuries to his head and left leg.

The full story is available in this Japan Today article.

Nairobi, Kenya - 21 October 2005: Rhinocerous Attacks, Kills Keeper

The endangered black rhino bull, a resident of the famous Daphne Sheldrick Elephant Sanctuary in Kenya's Nairobi National Park, fatally gored a keeper and charged other sanctuary staff before being shot dead. The Seattle Post-Intelligencer has the story.

Picture of the Year: Peregrine Falcon Attacks Starling Flock

The BBC reports that this picture has won the Wildlife Photographer of the Year award. Shown is a peregrine falcon as it stoops on a flock of urban starlings, in Rome.

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