The Guinean barracuda is a large and terrifying predator that rips into its prey with rows of sharp, fang-like teeth. They are surprisingly fast for their size and have been known to be territorial enough to attack humans. Barracudas can grow up to seven feet and weigh up to 100 pounds. However, as fierce as this river monster is, Texas native Thomas Gibson proved to be the greater predator.
Gibson, 75 and an enthusiastic tarpon angler, was fishing with his friend Cam Nicolson in Rio Cuanza, Angola when the gigantic fish struck. He had originally been fishing for tarpon, and was shocked at the massive size of the animal. Gibson pulled line and settled in for a fight, but surprisingly the barracuda gave in after a mere 10 minutes.
“It came to the boat fairly easily and once I got hold of the leader and pulled it up to the surface, we saw it was a huge barracuda,” Cam Nicolson wrote to GrindTV Outdoor. “It was bigger than any barracuda I had seen.”
According to Sport Fishing Magazine, the giant barracuda weighed 102 pounds and measured in at nearly 6.11 feet. The International Game Fish Association is currently reviewing certification for Gibson’s catch, which could become the new all-tackle world record. The current record holder belongs to a 101-pound, 3-ounce barracuda hooked in Africa by Dr. Cyril Fabre.
It was a stunning capper to an otherwise lackluster February trip for Gibson, who spent a slow week in Rio Cuanza before hitting the massive fish.