For one fortunate fisherman in Cambodia, the catch of the day was the world’s largest recorded freshwater fish — a large stingray weighing a shocking 660 kilos that took a couple of dozen males to hold ashore.
Fisherman Moul Thun, 42, hooked the feminine stingray, which measured nearly 13 toes from snout to tail, close to a distant island on the Mekong River on June 13.
The following morning, the fisherman alerted a close-by workforce from the Wonders of the Mekong — a joint Cambodian-U.S. analysis mission — which has publicized its conservation work in communities alongside the river.
The scientists arrived inside hours of getting a post-midnight name with the information, and have been amazed at what they noticed.
“Yeah, while you see a fish this measurement, particularly in freshwater, it’s exhausting to understand, so I believe all of our workforce was surprised,” Wonders of the Mekong chief Zeb Hogan mentioned in a web based interview from the College of Nevada in Reno.
The stingray was hooked close to a distant island on the Mekong River on June 13.Chhut Chheana/Wonders of the Mekong by way of AP
The stingray shattered the earlier file for the most important freshwater fish, which had been held by a 646-pound Mekong big catfish that was found in 2005 in northern Thailand.
However the catch was not nearly setting a brand new file, Hogan mentioned.
“The truth that the fish can nonetheless get this large is a hopeful signal for the Mekong River, ” Hogan mentioned, noting that the waterway faces many environmental challenges, together with overfishing air pollution and dam constructing.
A couple of dozen males have been wanted to care the stingray ashore.Chhut Chheana/Wonders of the Mekong by way of AP
The Mekong River runs by way of China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. It’s dwelling to a number of species of big freshwater fish however environmental pressures are rising.
“Massive fish globally are endangered. They’re high-value species. They take a very long time to mature. So in the event that they’re fished earlier than they mature, they don’t have an opportunity to breed,” Hogan mentioned. “Loads of these large fish are migratory, in order that they want massive areas to outlive.”
The scientists who rushed to the positioning inserted a tagging machine close to the tail of the hulking fish earlier than releasing it again into the river. The machine will ship monitoring data for the following yr, offering unprecedented knowledge on big stingray conduct in Cambodia.
Wonders of the Mekong chief Zeb Hogan (above) mentioned “all of our workforce was surprised” at discovering the stingray.AP Photograph/Courtesy of Zeb Hogan, College of Nevada-Reno
“The enormous stingray is a really poorly understood fish. Its identify, even its scientific identify, has modified a number of occasions within the final 20 years,” Hogan mentioned. “It’s discovered all through Southeast Asia, however we’ve nearly no details about it. We don’t learn about its life historical past. We don’t learn about its ecology, about its migration patterns.”
Researchers say it’s the fourth big stingray reported in the identical space prior to now two months, all of them females. They suppose this can be a spawning hotspot for the species.
Regardless of the record-marking catch being dumped again within the waters, the fisherman was compensated at market fee, which means he was paid about $600.
With Put up Wires