The chunk taken out of the board.
The chunk taken out of the board.

Shark attack: ‘He thought he ran over a turtle’

A KITESURFER made a lucky escape after a shark ripped the back of his surfboard off at a popular northern NSW break, according to reports on social media.

Pictures of a surfboard with what appears to be a massive bite mark ripped out of it emerged on Instagram earlier on Monday.

Comments on the post claim the chunk was taken out of the kitesurfer's board while he surfed off Flat Rock, in Ballina Shire.

Some said the kitesurfer thought he had accidentally ran over a sea turtle until he returned to shore and saw what appeared to be bite marks, complete with a shark tooth embedded in his surfboard.

The aftermath of the attack.
The aftermath of the attack.

"(He) thought he ran over a turtle then realised the back of his board was missing," a man who apparently witnessed the attack wrote in a comment on the post.

"So he came in and grabbed another board, poor shark would of (sic) got a fright."

Ryan Kenny, who runs Byron Bay media company Mocean Media House, shared the image from a friend's Instagram account to his own Instagram page.

The toe-sized shark tooth a kitesurfer claims he found in his board.
The toe-sized shark tooth a kitesurfer claims he found in his board.

He said surfers in Ballina and the surrounding areas were only just starting to relax about getting back into the water after a spate of more than a dozen attacks since 2015.

"It's been pretty good lately, hopefully it doesn't get as bad as it was a few years ago," Mr Kenny said.

"After those two years people are at the point now where they accept (the sharks) are always there."