An offshore angler turned down the chance to claim a blacktip shark world record, because he wanted his magnificent catch to live on.
Last January while fishing in the Turks and Caicos Islands, angler Michael Roth caught what would have been a blacktip shark world record, but decided to let the shark live on rather than claim the record, reported Southern Fried Science.
Roth would have set a world record for the largest black tip caught with a fly rod and M-10 KG line. He caught the shark using an orange and red fly. The largest blacktip on record caught with that gear was 77 pounds. Roth’s shark weighed 120. But to claim the blacktip shark world record for that type of fly gear, Roth would have had to kill the shark. The International Game and Fish Association requires anglers to kill their catches and weigh them on official scales to be considered for a record.
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“While I would love to be a world record holder, the thought of killing this beautiful animal was completely abhorrent to me,” Roth said. “I felt so fortunate to have hooked and landed this spectacular fish. Killing it was always out of the question.”
He also said one of his top priorities as an angler is to keep the fish species he catches healthy. So, instead of killing the trophy shark, Roth snapped a few pictures and released it.
“I always encourage all anglers to catch an release,” he said.
Roth is no stranger to big game fishing. He’s been all over the world chasing fish, from Alaska to Panama and throughout the Eastern Caribbean.
Would you have claimed the world record? Let us know in the comments below.