In a mysterious incident, an Australian teen emerges out of the water after a night dip in the ocean with something that scared the life out of him. Wading waist-deep into the water at Brighton Beach in suburban Melbourne on Saturday evening, Sam Kanizay stood still for about 30 minutes in the water. But after he returned back, he was bleeding profusely from the calves down.
Washing off the blood from the legs, the family of Sam believe it was an attack of sea lice.
"The cold water numbed my legs. I felt what I thought was pins and needles but maybe it wasn't just pins and needles," the 16-year-old told 3AW radio Monday. "It sort of looked like hundreds of little pin holes or pin-sized bites distributed all over my ankle and the top of my foot," he said.
Sam was rushed to the hospital, where the doctors could not identify the cause of the injury. His father went as far as scooping some of the tiny critters from the ocean and posting a film online of them devouring small chunks of meat.
But Jeff Weir, from the Dolphin Research Institute, said the injury was likely caused by opportunistic amphipods, a tiny crustacean that latches onto decaying plant or animal matter to help break it down.
"They are not there to eat us, but sometimes they might take a little bit, like mosquitoes and leeches and other things out there in the environment," he told AFP.
"He (Kanizay) must have been very, very cold and he wouldn't have felt it," added Weir, who experienced a similar injury on his forehead after a night dive 40 years ago.
The veteran marine researcher said Kanizay's injury was much like a graze and he should not fear returning to the water.
"I don't think there has been anything that has changed, there just aren't that many people that stand really still for that long."