Man fighting for life after shark attack at Fishery Bay in Australia

SYDNEY (AFP) - A surfer was fighting for his life on Saturday after being mauled by a shark in Australia's south, police said.

The man was surfing at Fishery Bay in Port Lincoln National Park, some 245 km west of Adelaide, when the shark attacked him.

"The man sustained life-threatening injuries and was transported to Port Lincoln Hospital," South Australia state police said.

South Australian Abalone Industry Association president Jonas Woolford said there had been increased shark sightings in the area recently.

"All the reports are that they're out there and that they're aggressive," he told the Port Lincoln Times.

Sharks are a regular feature in Australian waters, and swimmers and surfers have had their share of encounters with the animals in recent months.

Experts say attacks are increasing as water sports become more popular, although fatalities remain rare.

The most recent death was in February when a Japanese man died after both his legs were bitten off by a shark near Ballina in eastern Australia.

Two teenagers died in shark attacks in December, one on the country's west coast and one on the east.