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Friday, April 6, 2012

Say cheese! Giant skate fish smiles for the camera after pulling fisherman two miles out to sea

By Rachel Rickard Straus When angler Andy Logan was thrown onto his knees and pulled towards the edge of his boat while fishing in the Irish Sea, he knew he must have caught something very special. But, with his rod bent over double, Andy’s 4.5 ton boat was pulled two miles out to sea by his catch before the 38-year-old could haul it in. It was only when skipper Hamish Currie was forced to reverse the 37ft boat that the fish came to the surface and was heaved on board by three men. Catch of the day: Andy Logan had never seen such a big skate as the one he caught in the Irish Sea He had caught a skate measuring an incredible 8ft long by 6ft wide and weighing in at a mighty 222lbs. It set a record for the biggest common skate caught in the Irish Sea - 5lbs off the British record. Andy, a mechanic from Carrickfergus, County Antrim, said: 'I placed my rod in the holder on the boat and normally you have a bit of time to get to it when something bites. 'But this one just bent the rod in half and nearly pulled it off the boat. When I got the rod out of the holder the sheer force of the skate pulled me right across the boat. 'I was on my knees at the back of the boat and gripped on to the bar to make sure I didn’t fall in.’ The crew had to pull the anchor up because the fish was taking all of the line. It then dragged the boat along for two miles towards Scotland. At last the fish surfaced and Andy used a pole on each cheek to pull it into the boat. It took two people at the start and then three to finally get it into the boat. Too big for a plate: Andy Logan hauled in a skate weighing a record 222 lbs Andy added: 'When I got it up I realised how big it was, it was a complete monster. 'We kept it for three or four minutes and grabbed a few photographs then put it back in the sea. It took us about an hour and ten minutes, I’ve caught sharks easier than that! 'Words can’t describe how I felt when I saw it, I have caught skate before but not one that big.' Andy was fishing near Rathlin Island with skipper Hamish, who runs the Predator Ireland fishing trip business. source:dailymail


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