Norwegian Angler Catches Odd Looking Ratfish With Huge Bulbous Eyes
While most of us spend most of our fishing trips staring at an empty line - or at best hooking an old boot - an angler in Norway managed to reel in quite the catch.
Oscar Lundahl, 19, got the shock of his life when he saw the alien-like creature on the end of his line, its huge, bulbous eyes staring up at him.
Oscar, who is a fishing guide for Nordic Sea Angling came across the strange animal when he was fishing for blue halibut off the island of Andoya in northern Norway.
Using mackerel as bait with four hooks on his line, Oscar was fishing in 2,600ft of water at the time.
It turned out to be a ratfish, whose Latin name 'Chimaeras Monstrosa Linnaeus' aptly derives from a Greek mythical monster that had the head of a lion and the tail of a dragon.
Oscar, a fishing guide for Nordic Sea Angling, said: "We were looking for blue halibut which is a rare species about five miles off shore.
"I had four hooks on one line and felt something quite big on the end of it.
"It took me about 30 minutes to reel it in because it was 800 metres deep.
"There were two halibut on two of the hooks and I was really happy about that and then I saw there was something else.
"It was pretty amazing. I have never seen anything like it before. It just looked weird, a bit dinosaur-like.
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"I didn't know what it was but my colleague did."
The fish he ended up catching is a relative of the shark, which dates back 300 million years.
Ratfish tend to live in deep water, and because of that are very rarely caught - their huge eyes supposedly having been developed to help them see in the darkness of the depths.
While they're harmless to humans and just feed on crustaceans like crabs and sea snails, their appearance is no doubt enough to scare the hell out of anyone that comes across them.
Although ratfish are harmless to humans and feed on crustaceans like crabs and sea snails, their odd appearance is enough shiver any fisherman's timbers.
Due to the sudden change in pressure, the ratfish sadly didn't survive being hauled up out of the water.
But don't worry, Oscar made sure its life wasn't taken in vain, and took it home to pan-fry fillets of it in plenty of butter.
Oscar said: "Despite its ugly appearance it was really tasty. It is a bit like cod but tastier."
Featured Image Credit: BNPS
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