A group of brave beachgoers banded together to rescue a large stranded shark that washed ashore on Pensacola Beach, Florida.
Dramatic cell phone footage was captured of Tina Fey arriving at the beach from Texas with her husband Josh Fey to celebrate their anniversary, she told WKRG.
What started as a relaxing day in the sun suddenly turned into a breathtaking moment as the group attempted to roll the shark back into the sea.
In a Facebook post Ms Fey said they called wildlife rescuers and lifeguards but were told there was nothing they could do to help the stranded shark.
“It only appeared while swimming. I happened to beach it right in front of us,” Ms. Fey wrote. “We took action to put him back in the water as we were told by wildlife officers and lifeguards that this was not the case[hing] they could do it.”
Despite its lively wriggling and huge, razor-sharp teeth, it took three beachgoers to grab the shark’s tail to get the giant sea creature off the beach and into the shallows.
The shark initially lashed out aggressively as beachgoers continued to maneuver it.
In the video, you can hear Ms. Fey exclaiming, “Honey, look at those damn teeth,” before zooming in on the monstrous jaws.
At this point, four people had stood behind the shark in the water and tried to pull the heavy animal.
The observers feared that the operation without lifeguards could be too dangerous.
“If I didn’t have an eight-month pregnant wife, I would go in there and help you,” one person said off-camera.
After several attempts to pull the beast back into the sea, the shark finally returned to the water, with Mr. Fey guiding its tail back into the sea.
After the shark regained its strength, it began to swim away to the cheers of beachgoers.
They may have been pleased that the shark was alive, but they were even more relieved that no one’s limbs met their fate with the shark’s large jaws.
“Thank you very much to the guys who helped us,” Mr. Fey told WKRG. “You know, without them I wouldn’t be able to move them. She weighed between 5 and 600 pounds; I would think. I couldn’t move her; It took four of us to get into the water. I hope that anyone else who comes to beaches and sees an animal in distress like sea turtles or something like that will help them.”
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the creature was believed to be a mako shark, an aggressive predator found primarily off the East Coast, the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean.
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, sharks are very common in Florida’s coastal waters and bays because they use them as breeding grounds for their young.