RECORD-BREAK­ING SHARKS

Bests of three species have been caught in Bri­tish wa­ters – one is the heav­i­est fish ever to a UK an­gler!

Angling Times (UK) - - WELCOME -

THREE record-break­ing sharks have been caught in an in­cred­i­ble week for sea angling around the Bri­tish coast.

The first colos­sal preda­tor is be­lieved to be the big­gest fish ever landed by an an­gler in Great Bri­tain and Ire­land, and was es­ti­mated to weigh in ex­cess of 1,300lb!

At 4.6 me­tres long, the rare six-gill shark was caught by Tony Car­rig from Shan­non, who was on board Luke As­ton’s boat ‘Ra­hona’ out of Car­ri­ga­holt in County Clare, on the west coast of Ire­land.

Af­ter an hour-long tug of war the elu­sive fish emerged from the depths and marks were made on the boat for mea­sur­ing later.

“This is one of the largest sixgills we’ve ever had, and 1,300lb is a con­ser­va­tive es­ti­mate – it might well have been 1,400lb or 1,500lb,” said Luke.

“In 2009 one of our clients, Joe Waldis, took one back to port which was 3.9m long and weighed 1,056lb. This was the third six-gill we’d had in the last 10 days – some­times we’ll go days or weeks with­out hook­ing one.”

Cap­tors of a record thresher and blue were shark fish­ing for the first time. Som­er­set rod Nick Lane’s thresher, es­ti­mated to weigh 368lb, was caught aboard Dan Hawkins’ char­ter boat ‘Reel Deal’ out of Il­fra­combe, Devon.

The pre­vi­ous record stood at 323lb and was caught in 1982.

Nick’s pre­vi­ous big­gest fish is a 20lb blonde ray, and he told Angling Times that noth­ing could have pre­pared him for such a step-up in size: “The sound of the line scream­ing off the reel is one I will never for­get,” he said.

“Af­ter the fight I was left shak­ing and barely able to move.”

The fish took a whole mack­erel hook­bait mounted on a size 10/0 and was mea­sured by the crew at 90.75ins from the tip of the nose to the fork of the tail.

Danny Fitch’s first-ever shark fish­ing trip also made his­tory when he set the hook into the jaws of a blue shark es­ti­mated to have weighed 242lb off the Welsh coast.

The rare spec­i­men was a male, and fell to the Nor­folk rod while he fished with friend Dave Burten­shaw aboard record-

break­ing skip­per An­drew Al­sop’s White Wa­ter out of Mil­ford Haven.

It smashes the cur­rent Welsh record, stand­ing at 222lb, which was also boated aboard An­drew’s ves­sel in 2010.

Danny’s shark was ac­cu­rately mea­sured on board to re­veal a length of 110ins from the tip of the nose to the fork of the tail and a girth of 42ins. “I was hung over the side of the boat, hang­ing on for dear life as the huge fish just made run af­ter run,” Danny told Angling Times. “My big­gest-ever sea fish up un­til this trip was a tope of around 40lb, so to catch a huge shark like this on my first-ever trip was like a dream come true.” The two an­glers shared around 15 fish be­tween them, with Danny boat­ing other blue sharks to a best of 120lb. All th­ese preda­tors were caught on mack­erel hook­baits fished in con­junc­tion with a 380lb wire trace and a size 16/0 hook.

Video footage and pic­tures of the mea­sur­ing of the 242lb blue shark have now been sub­mit­ted in or­der to make an of­fi­cial claim for a Welsh record for the species.

All three sharks were re­turned.

“Af­ter the fight I was left shak­ing and barely able to move”

Tony Car­rig’s six gill shark nears the boat. ES­TI­MATED 1 1300lb -PLUS SIX GILL SHARK Off Car­ri­ga­holt, Co. Clare

Danny Fitch’s im­mense 242lb blue shark. 242lb BLUE SHARK 2 Off Mil­ford Haven 368lb THRESHER SHARK 3 Off Il­fra­combe, Devon WHERE THEY WERE CAUGHT 1 2 3

Nick Lane’s es­ti­mated 368lb thresher shark.

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