Two Florida shark anglers caught what could be a world record shortfin mako on Tuesday night off a beach on Florida’s Gulf Coast.
Earnie and Joey Polk bagged the 11-foot, 805-pound shortfin mako at an undisclosed beach on the Gulf Coast, reports the Pensacola News Journal.
The shark-fishing duo tried to keep their catch a secret while transporting it back to their home, but sharks that big don’t go unnoticed at gas stations. A photo of the shark on the back of the Polk’s pickup was posted to Facebook on Wednesday and has since gone viral.
The Polks are accomplished land-based shark anglers, but this shark was their ultimate catch.
“That’s probably the best shark we ever caught,” Earnie said. “You’ll spend many, many hours to catch a fish of that caliber or a fish of that size.”
Both Earnie and Joey already have three shark world records from the International Land-Based Shark Fishing Association between them. Earnie bagged an 11-foot-2-inch, 674-pound shortfin mako in 2009, and an 11-foot-9-inch, 928-pound tiger shark in 2010. That same year, Joey caught a 12-foot-9-inch, 949-pound tiger shark. They released all of their world record catches, but said their recent catch was too exhausted to swim back to sea, so they decided to keep it.
Earnie said he will distribute an estimated 600 pounds of the shark’s meat to friends and family. He is in the process of submitting his application for the world record shortfin mako shark.
Featured image credit: West Calhoun/Special to the News Journal