Has the biggest fish in the Mediterranean Sea just been caught?

This fish is perhaps the largest specimen found in the entire Mediterranean Sea.

When we talk about the most massive species on the planet we almost instantly think of elephants. Pachyderms, which weigh around a ton, are monsters of power, and by far the heaviest terrestrial species there is. But when you immerse yourself in the marine world, the numbers are giddy. Indeed, whale sharks weigh the weight of about twenty elephants, which makes them the most massive species on the planet. But in the seas, it’s not just whales to dethrone elephants.

A new specimen of sunfish has just been caught in nets off Ceuta, one of the two Spanish cities on the African continent. This fish, whose weight could not be perfectly measured – “The scale stopping at a ton” – may well be the largest specimen in the Mediterranean. With 3.20 meters long and more than a meter wide, this fish weighs more than two tons, enough to compete on the scale with a teenage killer whale.

He never stops growing

With regard to its species, the images collected from the capture made it possible to recognize the features of a Mola Alexandrini, a subspecies of the moon fish which has a very astonishing peculiarity, these fish have an infinite growth. Without ever stopping to grow these fish can reach impressive sizes. The largest specimen known until then was 3.30 meters at the time of its capture and weighed no less than 2.3 tons. Despite its scary size, there is no risk of experiencing a remake of the teeth of the sea with this kind of fish by its side. In fact, moon fish have a diet composed mainly of jellyfish.

This species, still very little known by scientists is classified as vulnerable by the IUCN, the international union for the conservation of nature. According to some researchers the largest specimens could reach 2.5 tons. Consumed mainly in Asia, sunfish is prohibited for sale in the European Union, in particular for hygiene reasons. The specimen fished off Ceuta was therefore able to reach the waters of the Mediterranean after a short passage on the boat.

Scientists on board took photos and took some of its DNA to learn more about this species before releasing it a few minutes later.

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