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Moray Eel attack?

Discussion in 'Accidents and Incidents' started by Mr. Bubble, Mar 27, 2010.

  1. Mr. Bubble

    Mr. Bubble Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: SC
    161
    1
    0
    Have you ever been attacked by an eel? I was always under the impression that they look mean, but are relitively harmless. I guess I found out what "relitively harmless" really means. I went diving at a wonderfull Caribbean vaction locale and incountered a free swimming morey on a night dive. My buddy and I saw the eel, and I reached over to touch its tail. As I glanced on past him (her), I felt this intense tugging on the thigh of my wetsuit. I figured it was my buddy getting my attention to look at the eel and shrugged it off. The next thing I know is that the morey eel was up close and personnal with my BC, legs, tank and almost biting my face. I raised my hand and it swam off. That was exhilerating to say the least. After the dive, my buddy said, "I want to shake the hand of a man who servived a morey attack". I was like, " what do you mean?". It appears that the intense tugging I felt was the morey gnawing on my leg. It did'nt leave any marks on my wetsuit, thank goodness. It was brand new.
    Anyone else have any eel stories? I now have a little more respect for these critters.
    So relitively, I was attacked severly, but was not harmed.

    just fodder for the masses :shocked2:

    Mr. B
     
  2. aquaregia

    aquaregia NAUI Instructor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Santa Cruz, CA
    1,953
    185
    63
    I've never considered "relatively harmless" to mean "something that wants to be petted."
     
  3. ScubaFeenD

    ScubaFeenD Marine Scientist

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Baltimore, MD
    1,573
    96
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    Generally speaking, I am always under the impression that you should not poke and prod at animals with large teeth. Marine life is better to look at than to touch, and if you had ended up with a laceration things might not have gone so well.
     
    Rob Wilks likes this.
  4. skynscuba

    skynscuba Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: San Jose, CA
    575
    0
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    I saw a free swimming green moray bite a woman in the face. It was poking around in the coral, and suddenly a high-speed lobster blasted out. The moray tried for the lobster, missed, and bit the woman. She didn't even see it -- at first, she thought someone had kicked her.

    I'll get up pretty close if they are in their hole, but I give the free swimming ones plenty of room now.

    A friend of mine was on a dive in Maui, and the dive master reached into a hole to try to get an octopus out. The DM found out the hard way that there was also a moray in the hole, when it bit his hand.
     
  5. gcbryan

    gcbryan Solo Diver

    # of Dives:
    Location: Seattle
    5,410
    1,371
    113
    If you stuck you hand in the face of a cougar and got bitten would you feel that you had been attacked?

    DM's sticking theirs hands in holes for octopus?

    I always assume that people have common sense but I'm frequently wrong.
     
  6. Dirty-Dog

    Dirty-Dog Frequently Censored ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Pueblo West, CO, USA
    1,841
    864
    113
    Spend some time in an ER and you quickly learn that common sense isn't.
     
    Yank and wetb4igetinthewater like this.
  7. sydney-diver

    sydney-diver Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Sydney, Australia
    210
    15
    0
    Common sense isn't very common...
     
  8. Mr. Bubble

    Mr. Bubble Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: SC
    161
    1
    0
    It was a night dive. The eel just sort of appeared, free swimming within arms reach. I touched the very end of it's tail as it passed by. It must have circled around without me noticing and then attaked my leg. It then wrapped itself all around my tank, throughy legs again, heading for my face, mouth wide open. My only defense was an arm strike towards it, and it swam away.

    Don't include me with people who stick their hands in holes while underwater.

    As my first post stated, I am interested in reports of other attacks of this nature,

    Thanks.
     
  9. USCScubaboy

    USCScubaboy Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Madison, Wi
    379
    10
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    Just because an animal is within arm's reach doesn't mean you should have touched it.

    But, from your OP, it sounds like you've learned a valuable lesson from your experience. :thumbs-up
     
    Yank likes this.
  10. sydney-diver

    sydney-diver Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Sydney, Australia
    210
    15
    0
    I don't see a lot of difference to be honest, touching a Moray is asking for trouble. I've seen a photo of what one did to someones thumb (tore it off) when he tried something similar. Plus when you touch an animal and it strikes you it's more defensive, not really an attack?
     

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