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07th Feb 2023

Teenager killed in shark attack after swimming with dolphins in Australia

Ellen Fitzpatrick

So awful.

A teenage girl in Australia has been sadly killed in a shark attack after she was swimming with dolphins.

Police in Perth confirmed that 16 year old Stella Berry was on a jet ski along the Swan River when she spotted a pod of dolphins and decided to jump in and swim with them.

Unknown to her, there was also a bull shark in the area and Stella’s friends watched from a bridge as it attacked her.

The shark bit her thigh before Stella was pulled to the shore by a bystander but unfortunately, she did not survive her injuries.

This attack is said to be the first fatal shark attack in Swan River in 100 years, with a 13 year old boy losing his life in 1923.

Stella’s parents have paid tribute to their daughter since the attack, saying they were “devastated and deeply shocked” by their “beautiful” daughter’s death.

“Stella was a vibrant and happy girl with plans of living in Europe after school,” they said.

“She was a caring person and was a dear friend to many, across a variety of schools in the area. She had an infectious laugh which we couldn’t help laughing at too when we heard it.

“She was a beautiful and loving big sister and the best daughter we could have hoped for.”

Bull sharks are said to be just as dangerous as a great white, growing up to 3.5 metres long. They often also prey on dolphins and are known to travel into fresh water to hunt.

While attacks like this are “exceptionally rare”, experts are saying that Stella was in the wrong place at the wrong time when this one occurred.

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