While enjoying a swim in the ocean at a Turkish resort, a tourist met an unlikely predator—a sea turtle—which she claims nearly drowned her.
The tourist, 64-year-old Lidia Bazarova, was in Güzeolaba, a city she frequently visited. And she was only about 10 ft from the shore when the turtle attacked. As she recounted to The Sun, she was peacefully floating on her back when she felt something grab her and try to drag her underwater.
“It was really scary,” she said. “I didn’t know what it was that suddenly grabbed me. I was beating about the water with my arms—I was drowning.”
Bazarova, a Russian retiree, attempted to fight back. But the animal was too strong and refused to relent.
“The creature let me go only to grab me with an even stronger bite,” she continued. “I don’t know how long it lasted.”
As she struggled to pull herself from the sea turtle’s grasp, she caught the attention of a lifeguard, Mustafa Sarı, on shore. Thanks to him, she escaped with only bruises.
“He rushed to me and started to yell at [the sea turtle],” she said. “I guess it switched attention to the rescuer.”
The animal let go of Bazarova, which gave her the chance to swim for shore. Unfortunately, it then attacked Sari. He eventually managed to fight his way out of the grasp and scare the turtle away. The lifeguard suffered bite wounds on his shoulder.
“I raced towards the shore,” Bazarova continued. “…I was fighting my pain and my fear.”
Lidia Bazarova went to a local hospital where doctors treated her for wounds on her hip, legs, buttocks, and fingers.
“We thank the lifeguard,” said Bazarova’s daughter, Kamila. “Without him, maybe the result would have been bad.
There Have Been 11 Loggerhead Sea Turtle Attacks in the Past 2 Weeks
It was later revealed that the sea turtle was a loggerhead. The carnivorous species can weigh as much as a dairy cow. Loggerheads live on a diet of clams, mussels, crabs, and shrimp. And they’re not typically dangerous to humans. However, if they feel threatened, they can become aggressive.
According to Professor Mehmet Gökoğlu, loggerhead sea turtles tend to attack humans when they swim into their “living space.” In just the past two weeks, 11 people have reported stories similar to Bazarova’s
Kamila told the publication that the same animal bit a man and a woman before attacking her mother.
“I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to get back in the sea,” Bazarova continued. “We want a warning posted about this danger. It is terrible that we will no longer go into the sea.”