Saturday, 2 October 2021

Do Not Mess With Fish 269,

and you though fish were fun!

well these needle fish defiantly are not! photograph Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management and Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program, whilst needlefish are not aggressive to humans, they do have a nasty habit, they like to jump over obstacles like shallow boats rather than go around or under them, the problem is that they jump at speeds of up to 60km/h (37mph), and since their obstacles sometimes happen to be humans on a boat out at sea, they literally impale them with their long beak, causing serious, sometimes fatal injuries, the needle fish is member of the family Belonidae, and is distributed around the tropical oceans of the world, when “stabbing” their human victims, needlefish cause deep puncture wounds, sometimes lodging themselves in their victims, or, even worse, breaking off in them. Although you wouldn’t think of comparing them to sharks in terms of danger, to Pacific Islander communities they represent an even greater risk than sharks, as members of these communities spend a lot of time around shallow reefs, fishing in low boats,

although needlefish “attacks” are not frequent, there have been dozens of reports of such incidents over the years, including one last year, when an Indonesian boy on a fishing trip was stabbed through the neck by a needlefish, luckily, he was taken to a hospital and survived, but some reported cases have been fatal, for example, in 2018, a needlefish was responsible for the death of a Thai Navy special forces cadet, as an aside the fish is not considered to be a food fish as their green bones and flesh tend to put people off of eating them, note to self, I must remember to keep my head down the next time I am fishing in the tropics!

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