Two swimmers have survived rare shark attacks in waters off Russia’s Pacific coast this week within 24 hours, Emergency Ministry and media said on Thursday.

Two rare shark attacks occurred within 24 hours of each other in roughly the same area.

Experts believe that the presence of sharks in these waters might be linked to climate change and global warming.

In one case, a 16-year-old boy was attacked while swimming on Thursday near Zheltukhina Island some 6,500 km (4,000 miles) east of Moscow. He was immediately taken to Vladivostok hospital.

The second attack happened on Wednesday, when a shark bit off the forearms of a 25-year-old man who was trying to protect his wife in Telyakovsky Bay near Vityaz village, some 230 km (142 miles) south of the regional capital Vladivostok.

The second shark attack on a human was registered...in the waters of the Sea of Japan, the local Emergency Ministry said in a statement posted on its Web site www.mchspk.ru.

Sharks are rarely seen in Russia and shark attacks are extremely rare in Russia. The head of the World Wildlife Fund's sea programme, Konstantin Zgurovsky, told the Interfax news agency that the region off the coast from Vladivostok had not seen shark attacks for years so this could be a signal of climate change.

It came here with warm currents from the southern seas, said World Wildlife Foundation expert Konstantin Zgurovsky. It might have migrated there following fish stocks or squid.

Another expert, interviewed by Kommersant daily newspaper, said attacks might continue because waters off the Far Eastern coast have become warmer, attracting tropical sea creatures.

The Emergency Ministry after the shark attack has banned swimming the coast of the Maritime Territory.

Both of the attacks took place in Khasan district.

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