Two people were injured and two boats were significantly damaged in three separate encounters during the weekend with jumping sturgeon on Florida‘s Suwannee River.
The incidents bring to 11 the number of human-sturgeon encounters reported to the state so far this year, the Gainesville Sun reported.
The most serious injury happened Friday just south of the confluence of the Santa Fe River, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
April Baker, 31, of Plant City, was seated in the bow of a boat and was in front of the windshield when a sturgeon jumped out of the water.
She and the fish hit the windshield, FWC spokeswoman Karen Parker said, adding that Baker’s injuries appeared to include significant dental damage that might require oral surgery to correct.
The second incident happened Saturday. A boater told the FWC that when he saw a leaping sturgeon he crouched down in his boat, but apparently not low enough. The sturgeon hit the man in the head, cutting him multiple times, according to his report to the FWC.
The man estimated damage to his boat at $1,200.
An out-of-state visitor was involved in the third weekend incident. Parker said the man told the FWC on Monday that a leaping sturgeon did about $4,000 damage to his boat on Sunday.