Man survives barb through chest from 250kg stingray

UPDATE: FISHERMAN Shane Huxley has talked about the moment he came close to death when he was pierced in the chest by a three-metre bull ray off Coffs Harbour.

While out fishing with his deckhand 14km off the coast on Tuesday at 2am, Shane went to let the nets go on the boat and noticed a large ray in it.

He continued to follow normal procedure, which is to cut the stingers off the tail and then release the ray when the tail flicked out of his hand, swung sideways and drove its barbs into his chest.

"I didn't think I was going to make it back in," Shane told The Advocate.

"I was going to ring 000 but thought what's the point, I'm not going to make it."

"I presumed it was hitting my heart, I walked up to the deckhand and said, mate I'd buggered, we're not going to get back."


The damage done to Shane Huxley after the barb of a 250kg Stingray struck him.
The damage done to Shane Huxley after the barb of a 250kg Stingray struck him. Beth Huxley

Shane was extremely lucky with the barb missing his heart and skimming his ribcage unlike the late Steve Irwin, who lost his life after a stingray barb pierced his heart in 2006.

Taking three hours to get back into the harbour, Shane was taken to the hospital where he was then treated and remains due to a chest infection caused by the puncture and toxins on the barb.



A COFFS Harbour professional fisherman is being treated in hospital after he was struck in the chest, just above the heart, by a stingray barb.

The fisherman was at sea off the Coffs Coast with his deckhand netting prawns on Tuesday when the stingray was pulled up in fishing net around 2.15am.

The man was attempting to remove the large bull ray, which he estimated to be about 250kg, from the nets when the stingray flicked its tail.

This led to a 12-inch barb piercing his chest.

The fisherman, who remains in hospital with a chest infection, said the barb was removed when the stingray pulled away, which struck just above his heart but was left in immense pain.

He was then forced to endure a three-hour trip back to shore where he was rushed to hospital.

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