New York Post: MANHATTAN, NY – A New Jersey fisherman in search of fluke got an unexpected catch of the day — a massive dead great white shark that “smelled like death” as it oozed blood.
Tim Brindley, 58, of Barnegat Light, said the great white had gotten tangled up in his trawl net as he was fishing on Aug. 1 some 2 miles off Barnegat Inlet near the wreck of a tanker ship that sunk in 1942, the Asbury Park Press reports.
“I just thought: “Oh my God, there’s a great white shark in the net,” Brindley told the newspaper, adding the catch was a first for him — and far more interesting than other previous random hauls like airplane propellers and car tires.
The shark — more than double Brindley’s 5-foot-10-inch frame — dwarfed the New Jersey captain in a photo he posted on Facebook to commemorate the find.
“Looked to be dead for a couple of days,” Brindley wrote alongside three photos, including one of the bloodied shark with a rope around its midsection.
“This fish was dead on the bottom and got caught in my net,” he wrote. “It was [deteriorating] and smelled like death. That’s why I was able to put a rope around his mid-section, you could never do that with a live one.”
But Brindley said now he regrets sharing the once-in-a-lifetime experience with friends and strangers alike on social media, including some who accused him of killing the apex predator.
“I’m getting a little grief over it,” Brindley told the newspaper. “I felt I had to do something. I wanted to show people there are great white sharks out there.”
John Chisolm, a shark researcher at the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, said there’s no way how to tell how the shark died.
“Usually, when it’s bleeding, it hasn’t been dead for too long,” Chisolm told the newspaper. “It was showing some signs of decomposition. You can see on the side, the skin was starting to slouch.”
Brindley, meanwhile, said he dropped the great white back into ocean after snapping a few mementos. He also pushed back on someone who accused him of killing the shark, claiming the rope was choking its gills.
“Wrong,” the captain replied. “That rope around his gills I put there to get him off the boat. Sorry to say but the general public is clueless what goes on to catch fish.”
- Top Feature Photo: Timothy Brindley, Facebook