The New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife has just confirmed that a local fisherman has smashed the record for albacore or “longfin” tuna. The previous record has held strong since 1984, but local Matthew Florio beat this catch by just 3.4 ounces, his albacore weighing in at just over 78 pounds.
Back in October, Florio was chunking off the boat Luna Sea at the east elbow of Hudson Canyon when he snagged the massive longfin tuna.
In terms of his gear, “Matthew was using a Kevin Bogan 30 Stand Up rod and Penn 30 reel with 60-pound monofilament when he landed the fish. A butter fish served as the bait,” the department reported. “The new record albacore tuna measured 48 and 3/8 inches in length and had a girth of 37 inches.”
The fisherman’s albacore was also just 10 pounds lighter than the world record catch, an 88-pound monster that occurred at Gran Canaria, Canary Islands, in November 1977.
According to NOAA, albacore tuna can swim at speeds exceeding 50 miles per hour and can travel in schools up to 19 miles wide. Typically, these fish frequent warm-temperate and tropical waters, reaching the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans.
Fellow East Coast Fisherman Makes a Surprise Catch
Around the same time as Florio’s catch, a fisherman in Rhode Island found a very different kind of catch tangled in his nets. While trolling roughly four miles off the coast of Block Island, the angler and his crew realized they accidentally caught a World War II bomb.
Naturally, the fisherman contacted the U.S. Coast Guard, who also required assistance from the Navy. Soon enough, Navy Explosive Ordinance Disposal Mobile Unit 12 pulled up alongside the vessel and took possession of the explosive, identifying it as a World War II MK6 depth charge.
The following day, the ordinance disposal unit detonated the explosive underwater, away from any unsuspecting fishermen out for an innocent troll.
“The safety of people and the environment are our top priority in these situations,” a spokesperson for the Coast Guard said. “For that reason, the U.S. Navy coordinated detonation with the State of Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management and NOAA to ensure the safety of people and the surrounding environment, including the wildlife.”
On the same note, a spokesperson for the Navy urged civilians to contact authorities as soon as they discover a possible explosive.
“When individuals encounter what may be ordinance, they should not move or touch any possible ordnance,” the Navy spokesperson said. “For a maritime-related discovery, as was the case with the anglers, calling the U.S. Coast Guard is paramount. If ordnance is discovered on land or a beach, people should immediately notify their local law enforcement.”