Last month, a rare frilled shark swam out of your nightmares and into an Australian fisherman’s net, reports the Sydney Morning Herald. The eel-like shark was just under 5 feet long and had 300 needle-like teeth arranged over 25 rows, which understandably freaked the fisherman out.
Although according to the Herald, these serpentine fish can grow up to 6.5 feet and sprout up to 47 rows of teeth, so it really could have been worse. It’s not like he was in the water with it, like this intrepid diver at Japan’s Awashima Marine Park.
This has actually been a busy year for newsworthy catches. Here are some other oddities that came out of the depths this year.
In May 2014, a Florida fisherman caught this looker near Key West, reports CNN. The 15 footer was only the second Goblin shark ever to be sighted in the Gulf of Mexico. It was caught alive so, after posing for a few obligatory photos, it was returned to the ocean. (Photo: CNN)
Armando Castillo, Joe Ludlow and Travis Savala caught these three massive (and kind of cute) swimmers last August in Southern California. According to AOL they hooked five but could only get three onto the boat, which isn’t all that surprising considering these guys weighed between 124 and 180 pounds each. (Photo: Facebook/ Excel Long Range Sport Fishing)
Around a month later further up the Pacific coast, this 7 foot sunfish washed ashore near Ilwaco, Washington. Sunfish are the world’s largest bony fish, according to the Washington Post, and sightings are extremely few and far between. (Photo: AP Photo via Washington Post)
In September, a Florida fisherman by the name of Steve Bergeron hoisted this ginormous crustacean out of the water. He sent photos to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission who ID-ed it as a scaly-tailed mantis shrimp, a.k.a. one of the menu items at Sushi Nakazawa. (Photos: Facebook/MyFWC/Steve Bergeron)
Also in September, this 200-pound giant squid was found floating in the water near Matagorda, Texas. According to ABC7 the 10 foot squid was already dead when some fisherman spotted it, and appeared to have been nibbled by a shark who apparently wasn’t all that hungry. (Photo: ABC7)
Don’t be fooled by the innocuous name, this is one weird looking sea creature. According to Grind TV, basket stars are invertebrates with “numerous arms that can measure more than 3 feet long with each branch featuring tiny sharp hooks that captures prey.” This one was caught by a fisherman last October in Singapore who filmed its multiple moving tentacles and then released it because ew.
Mekong Giant Catfish
Mekong giant catfish are critically endangered, and while that might spur some people to leave it alone, a restaurant in Vietnam snapped up the rarity for an estimated $16,000. It reportedly took nine men to carry the 500 pound fish into the restaurant. (Photo: Tuoi Tre News)
In happier news, California legend Forrest Galante caught a 12 pound lobster for dinner but then changed his mind about eating it, reports the Inquisitr. He named his new friend Albert Girthe and dropped him off at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History Sea Center for a few weeks before returning his bff to the ocean. (Photo: ABC News via the Inquisitr)