NAVARRE BEACH, Fla. – A Huntsville man made history for Navarre Beach Fishing Pier on Tuesday when he reeled in what he calls “the catch of his life,” a great white shark!
The fisherman, Jeremy Utter, owns Madison County Fence in Huntsville, but he goes down to the beach to fish during the winter months.
The great white shark he caught is the first ever to be caught on the pier, and is the first to be caught in the area since the 1960s. The catch is estimated to be about 10 feet long and 700 pounds.
“If they’re on the comeback and repopulating the way they should be, you’re gonna wind up with one on your hook every now and then,” explained Earnie Polk, the captain of a fishing group called Team True Blue. “It is what it is, we can’t control what bites our hook– but we did let it go as fast as possible.”
The shark was caught, tagged, and released. It took about an hour for the shark to be reeled in with the help of five men.
Utter told the Navarre Newspaper that it was the catch of a lifetime, that he could fish 50 more years and never get another one.
Data on the shark will now be shared with one of NOAA’s research programs.