A massive monk-shark, measuring 10 metres in length and more than two tonnes in weight, has been accidentally captured 12 miles off the Sagres coast. The unusually large fish was cut into shark steaks and sold in Portimão fish market.
The shark, which feeds on plankton and tiny marine animals, was reeled in on the nets of the vessel Mestre Catarino from a depth of more than 300 metres. Fishermen then tied the shark up and towed it to Baleeira Port in Sagres. They dragged the creature ashore, with the aid of a tractor, under the watchful gaze of astonished locals and even seasoned fishermen.
A fish trader bought the shark at 12 cêntimos a kilo and took the dismembered fish to Portimão’s marketplace. The shark steaks went on sale at three euros a kilo, although the majority of the carcass had no commercial value whatsoever. João Manuel, the fishmonger in question, said: “Most purchasers already appreciate shark and know that it is very good value for money. Many people will eat grilled shark or use it in fish-stew. It’s very rare to see a fish like this one on sale, although we also had a considerably smaller one on sale last year.” The shark’s head remained in Sagres, awaiting inspection from marine experts, while the rest of the fish was taken to a sanitary landfill site.