Six Beaches Near Miami With the Most Shark Attacks

Written by Brandi Allred
Updated: June 27, 2023
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Blacktip reef sharks with a shoal of fish

The vast majority of shark attacks in Florida occur with people enjoying surface recreation.

©iStock.com/damocean

It might not be the shark attack capital of the world, but there are a few beaches near Miami with the most shark attacks in Miami-Dade County. There were a total of 28 shark bites in Florida in 2021, all of which were unprovoked and none of which were fatal. This compared to 7 total bites in Hawaii and only 3 in California. There have been 19 shark attacks in Miami-Dade county since 1882. This might sound like a lot, but not when compared to the 155 shark attacks in Brevard county and 337 shark attacks in Volusia county. 

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There have been 896 shark attacks in Florida since 1837, only 19 of which occurred near Miami. Most victims were either swimming, wading, kayaking, surfing, or paddleboarding. Shark attacks near Miami and in all of Florida happen more in July, August, and September than in any other month. This is likely because more people go into the water at this time of year than at any other. Despite the numbers, more people drown in Florida every year than get bitten by sharks.

An overview of the Six Beaches Near Miami With the Most Shark Attacks.

Let’s take a look at the six beaches near Miami with the most shark attacks. Then, we’ll learn what you can do to reduce the risk of a shark attack when enjoying the white sand beaches of South Florida.

6. Fort Lauderdale Beach

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

©Sean Pavone/Shutterstock.com

Fort Lauderdale Beach is one of the beaches near Miami with the most shark attacks. The most recent attack took place in March of 2021 and involved a seven-year-old victim. Luckily, the bite was non-life threatening. According to reports, as the boy was swimming, a school of fish swam by him. As they did, a shark took a nip at his hand. The boy was hospitalized, and surgeons were able to repair the damage done to his hand. The type of shark responsible for the attack is unknown.

5. Key Biscayne Beach

Cape Florida Lighthouse, Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Key Biscayne in Miami, Florida has played host to a non-fatal shark attack in 2021.

©Anna Abramskaya/Shutterstock.com

Key Biscayne, a beach near Miami, played host to a non-fatal shark attack on an adult man in April of 2021. The man had a bite wound to his lower leg, which required treatment at a hospital but was not life-threatening. The species of shark that bit him is unknown. 

4. Miami Beach

South Beach, Miami Beach. Florida.

One of the beaches local to Miami with the most shark attacks is Miami Beach.

©Mia2you/Shutterstock.com

The most recent shark attack at Miami Beach, one of the beaches near Miami with the most shark attacks, occurred in 2021. The victim was a nine-year-old boy who sustained a bite wound to his shoulder. The attack occurred in waist-deep water as the boy surfed. The culprit is reported to be a 4-5 foot long shark of unknown species. The boy was hospitalized and later recovered fully.

3. Highland Beach

Highland Beach, Miami, Florida

It’s believed that a black tip shark was responsible for a 2022 shark attack on a teenage boy.

©Imadi7 / CC BY-SA 3.0 – License

The most recent shark attack at this beach near Miami with the most shark attacks occurred in April of 2022. The victim was a teenage boy who was bitten on the foot. He was transported to the hospital, but his injuries were non-life threatening. The culprit is believed to be a black tip shark.

2. Haulover Beach

South Beach, Miami Beach. Florida. Haulover Park.

Haulover Beach is a location where shark attacks have occurred, the most recent in 2017.

©Mia2you/Shutterstock.com

The most recent shark attack at Haulover Beach occurred in July 2017. The victim was an adult man, and the culprit is believed to be a 4-5 foot long bull shark. The bite occurred as lifeguards attempted to herd swimmers out of the water via watercraft. The shark may have been provoked by the presence of the watercraft. The victim sustained bites to both legs, which required hospitalization and stitches.

1. Lake Worth Beach Park

Amazing sunset aerial panorama of Lake Worth coastline, Florida.

On March 31, 2022, an adult male was the victim of a shark attack at Lake Worth Beach.

©GagliardiPhotography/Shutterstock.com

The most recent shark attack at Lake Worth Beach Park occurred on March 31, 2022. The victim was an adult man standing in the water fishing. He was bitten on the knee by a shark and transported to the hospital. Luckily, his injuries were not life-threatening. Though the responsible shark was not identified, it may have been a black tip shark.

Reducing Your Risk of Shark Attack

Reef shark headbutts diver

You can take steps to prevent yourself from shark attacks.

©Andrea Izzotti/Shutterstock.com

Whenever people go into the water, they’re entering the shark’s home. Sharks are apex predators and keystone species. Their importance to the food chain and to the overall health of the marine ecosystem cannot be understated. Every year, there are thousands of positive interactions between humans and sharks. Unfortunately, there are also a few attacks, some of which are fatal to the human victims. 

Avoiding Shark Attacks

Here, we’ll learn a few key steps to reduce your risk of attack when enjoying the beaches near Miami with the most shark attacks. First, never go into the water alone. Always swim, surf, or wade with a buddy. Stick close to shore, and never swim in areas where people are actively fishing. Avoid wearing jewelry, or bright, high-contrast colors, as these attract sharks. Also, stay out of the water at dawn and dusk, as these are prime feeding times for sharks. Finally, avoid excessive splashing, as this can mimic the splashing of prey items, like fish and seals

Why Sharks Are Important

Longfin Mako Sharks are found throughout the tropical waters of the world's oceans.

Sharks are keystone species.

©Martin Prochazkacz/Shutterstock.com

Sharks may be scary, especially if you’re visiting one of the beaches near Miami with the most shark attacks. But, they’re also incredibly important to the ecological health of our oceans. Sharks are keystone species and apex predators. That means that, without them, the entire oceanic food web would collapse. Shark conservation is one of the most important aspects of global conservation today.

Summary of 6 Beaches Near Miami With the Most Shark Attacks

Here’s a recap of which beaches located close to Miami reported shark attacks that were not life-threatening:

NumberBeachDate of Recent Shark AttackType of Shark
1Lake Worth Beach ParkMarch 2022Possibly a black tip shark
2Haulover BeachJuly 20174-5 ft bull shark
3Highland BeachApril 2022Believed to be a black tip shark
4Miami Beach20214-5 ft shark of unknown species
5Key Biscayne BeachApril 2021Unknown species
6Fort Lauderdale BeachMarch 2021Unknown species

The photo featured at the top of this post is © chatchai kusolsinchai/Shutterstock.com


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About the Author

Brandi is a professional writer by day and a fiction writer by night. Her nonfiction work focuses on animals, nature, and conservation. She holds degrees in English and Anthropology, and spends her free time writing horror, scifi, and fantasy stories.

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