A kayaker was dangling his foot in the water when he was bitten by a 10-foot hammerhead shark north of Malibu's Zuma Beach on Saturday, his friend said.
The attack took place just before 3 p.m. off the Deer Canyon shore near Deer Creek Road, according to the Ventura County Fire Department.
Kyle Hudgins said he and his friend, 29-year-old Dylan Marks of Santa Monica, were fishing for yellowtail about 2 miles out from the coast when they noticed the hammerhead circling their kayaks.
"We saw this fin and then it dove," Hudgins said. "We didn't see it for like five minutes and then all of a sudden he (Marks) had his foot over the side and he just got bit. And then he put his foot up on the kayak and he said, 'Oh, dude. I just got bit!'"
Hudgins called 911. Boaters and Coast Guard rescuers brought them to shore, where they got the bleeding to his ankle under control.
Marks was airlifted to Los Robles Hospital in Thousand Oaks. He was in stable condition after undergoing surgery and not expected to lose his foot, a hospital spokesman said.
Chris Lowe, director of the Cal State Long Beach Shark Lab, said hammerheads, which are known to approach fishing boats, are coming closer to the Southern California coast due to El Niño weather patterns.
"They are curious and they will come and steal fish off people's hooks," Lowe said.
Hudgins said he and Marks, who describes himself as a "catch and release shark fisherman" on his Instagram account, were not using bait that would have attracted the shark.
"The shark was just minding his business and then I guess he got hungry last second," he said.
The attack came exactly one week after a hammerhead shark circled a group of kayakers off the San Diego coast, forcing the closure of a stretch of beaches. That same day about 300 miles north, a surfer escaped injury after a great white shark bit her board off the Morro Strand State Beach coast.