Anglers and crew fishing in the Pacific off Costa Rica on Tuesday were astonished to discover that a large marlin they hooked was completely white.
The extremely rare catch of an albino blue marlin was made aboard the Spanish Fly, a 43-foot yacht that runs from Maverick Sportfishing out of Los Suenos. (It could be that the marlin was leucistic, with reduced pigmentation, and not a true albino lacking all pigmentation. But just about everyone is referring to the billfish as true or partial albino.)
The boat was captained by Juan Carlos Fallas Zamora, with mates Carlos Pollo Espinoza Jimenez and Roberto Chelato Salinas Hernandez. The clients were Bob and Karen Weaver, veteran anglers from New York. Karen reeled the marlin in after an hour-long fight, and the crew carefully released the billfish.
The boat's regular captain, Daniel Espinoza, stated on Facebook that he chose the wrong day to take a day off. He posted the accompanying photos on his page, though, saying the group "had an amazing day and confusión. Caught one Blue Marlin alvino, first time I hear of one. Congratulations on that great job."
Sportfishing report announced the catch on its Facebook page in all caps: "SUPER RARE ALBINO BLUE MARLIN!!!"
Red.Rum Sportfishing, based in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, shared the photos under the heading: "RARE ALBINO BLUE MARLIN!"
Jason Schratwieser, a spokesman for the International Game Fish Association, said by telephone that he shared the photos with several veteran angles, and none had ever seen a white blue marlin.
The Espinozas and Weavers were pre-fishing before a major tournament Wednesday, and unavailable for comment.
Glen Mumford, owner of Maverick Sportfishing, said via telephone that his captains have seen albino sailfish, but never a white blue marlin.
"It was definitely not a typical day," Mumford said.
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