Catching sharks off Siesta Key

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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2013 2:38 pm | Updated: 5:11 pm, Thu Apr 3, 2014.

SARASOTA, Fla. - A local shark fisherman says he's caught and released a shark almost every night over the past two weeks off Siesta Key's Turtle Beach.

Richard Gabor recently caught a bull shark that experts estimate is 7.5 feet long and 220 pounds.

"I just wanted to jump 100 feet in the air, everyone around me was clapping, it's a great feeling to land a beast like that," Gabor said.

After he posed for a few pictures, he and his friends pushed the shark back out to the gulf.

A shark fisherman off the coast of Nantucket wrestled a sandbar shark last week, before releasing it back to the ocean. Marine biologists watch with mixed emotions.

"It's okay to catch and release, but when you pull a shark out of water, it's basically suffocating at that point," said Dr. Robert Heuter, Senior Researcher at Mote Marine.

Gabor says he's been catching sharks nearly every time he's gone out the past couple weeks. He credits a recent tarpon migration.

No one knows the actual number, but Dr. Hueter says follow the 9-5 rule between the months 5 through 9.

That is--don't swim in the ocean between dusk and dawn between May and September. After all the sharks Gabor has reeled in, he's no longer much of a gulf swimmer.

Gabor says he's happiest on the beach, reeling in these big sharks.

"It's almost as good a feeling watching them swim off as to catch them," Gabor said.

Nothing fishy here. He's hooked.

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  • tim posted at 4:25 pm on Sun, Jul 28, 2013.

    tim Posts: 106

    agreed.... tormenting fish for fun should be criminalized.

  • tim posted at 4:24 pm on Sun, Jul 28, 2013.

    tim Posts: 106

    i'm glad that they released it but they kept it out of the water too long. fishermen are constantly torturing fish to death either as bait or for fun. i yelled at one family who were taking turns having their picture taken with a very small shark who was suffocating. they were oblivious to its suffering....

  • bigfatcatfish posted at 9:19 am on Fri, Jul 26, 2013.

    bigfatcatfish Posts: 17

    I fish the surf a lot and routinely catch sharks (although much smaller ones typically). I always find it hilarious how everytime I land a shark a tourist walking the beach always asks, with great surprise "you mean there are SHARKS in these waters ?!?!" To which I always reply "well, it is the sea. Where else do you excpect to find them?" For the record, I'm also an avid open water swimmer too and will remain to be until one eats me. It's a risk I take intruding on their territory. I feel safer swimming with the sharks than I do riding my bike amongst the cars.

  • George R posted at 5:50 pm on Mon, Jul 22, 2013.

    George R Posts: 4

    And when they are released, do they have a huge hook embedded in their mouth? Leave these magnificent creatures alone!


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