Shark filmed thrashing around in knee-deep water at popular Northland beach likely attracted by dumped fish carcasses

A holidaymaker has filmed a shark thrashing around in knee-deep water at a popular Northland beach that she thinks may have been attracted into the shallows by fish carcasses tossed in the water by “lazy” anglers.

Mangawhai resident Ellen Clark was walking along Tokerau Beach on the Karikari Peninsula at 6.45am Sunday when she noticed a large presence in the water.

"That's a big shark in knee-deep water," Ms Clark said on video she took of the incident.

No one was swimming in the water when the footage was taken.

A seagull can be seen pecking at a fish head in the foreground of the video and Ms Clark told 1 NEWS she spotted carcasses of around 12 fish in the water near the shark, leading her to believe that's what brought it so close to shore.

"People just fillet their fish then dump the carcasses in the water - it's a lazy and disgusting habit," she said.

Ms Clark provided a picture of what looks to be a bass head she spotted dumped on Tokerau Beach on January 3 and says she once saw around 80 snapper carcasses dumped on the shoreline.

Over Christmas, sightings of a great white shark temporarily closed Auckland's Orewa Beach.

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Witnesses say fishermen disrupted beachgoers who were trying to save the young shark, and that it was kicked and treated disrespectfully. Source: 1 NEWS

A juvenile great white was then caught by fishermen at Orewa, causing controversy as they're a protected species in New Zealand waters.