Before you start with the "Sharks live in the ocean!" comments, I KNOW. I know there are sharks, I know there are fish and octopi and stingrays and plenty of things that can injure me. That doesn't make it any less interesting or any less worth sharing.

Anyway, late last week a beach-goer on Long Beach Island caught footage of a bloody scene where a shark was feeding on a dolphin.

The circle of life, man. What is really worth noting is just how close to the shore this attack occurred. It is definitely close enough for swimmers, or even just waders, to be in the immediate vicinity and be in danger themselves.

Do me a favor, too - if you ever have the chance to get footage of something like this, try to keep the subject in frame. The digital zoom on your camera is only going to make things harder to focus and harder to keep steady.

According to NJ.com, the sharks were spotted circling a dolphin around 7am. A few witnesses saw what was going on and alerted lifeguards, who signaled for everyone to get out of the water.

Robert Schoelkopf, executive director of the Marine Mammal Stranding Center in Brigantine, said

That’s what sharks are out there for, to clean the ocean. It’s not the first time an injured, bleeding animal has drawn sharks to it.

He also warned against trying to help injured dolphins.

If you’re standing next to a dolphin while this is going on, you’re going to be in danger. It’s just food to a shark. The sharks are not going to know the difference, especially when there’s that much blood.

Schoelkopf also said that researchers from the MMSC searched the shoreline for any evidence of the attack, bite marks on the dolphin or a lost shark tooth that could help identify what type of sharks were involved, but nothing ever washed ashore.

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