A group of young anglers and students from Florida Atlantic University made a rare catch last week when they hooked a 14-foot hammerhead shark from shore in Broward County, Florida. Viktor Hluben, one of the young anglers who posed with the catch for a quick photo, said it was a long fight before the shark could be landed.
“We knew we had a giant fish on, we battled it for about an hour and 30 minutes, and when we saw the massive dorsal fin, we knew we hooked a giant shark,” Hluben told WPTV.
Hluben’s group of anglers belongs to a shark-fishing club that specializes in reeling sharks at nighttime. According to the video of the catch, which was posted on YouTube, anglers used a release-friendly circle hook.
The large shark, estimated to weigh around 700 pounds, was released within minutes of being captured. The anglers carefully guided the lumbering shark back to water, mindful of the set of jaws beneath the shark’s head. Although hammerheads are usually seen as less of a danger than other sharks—especially the more common bull sharks—they can still pack a painful bite.
Hammerheads have a smaller mouth than most other large sharks and generally hunt on the bottom of coastlines. Their distinctive T-shaped heads help give the animal a wider field of vision when sweeping for prey fish. The largest specimens have been recorded up to 20 feet in length and well over a thousand pounds.
You can see a video of the catch below. Includes some vulgar language.