Sailfish often leap while trying to shake a fisherman's hook, and very rarely they’ll jump into a boat, which typically inspires pandemonium.
But when this occurred recently off Costa Rica, the two anglers—possibly the first mate and a client—decided that the only sure way to avoid being injured was to abandon ship. (See video.)
The accompanying footage, uploaded by Crocodile Bay Lodge, shows a sailfish leaping and flailing as it’s being reeled toward the stern. In most cases sailfish will sound or try to avoid boats, but this fish was coming in fast and did not seem to realize a boat was in its way.
The captain, who presumably was videotaping the catch, can be heard yelling, "Careful! Careful!," as the man holding the fishing rod shoved himself into the other man, sending both over the stern rail.
Reads one of the comments on the resort’s Facebook page: “Nice takedown by the mate … lol.”
According to the video description, the sailfish was ultimately released alive.
Todd Staley, the resort's director of fishing operations, said that this had not happened in the resort's 15-year history until this day—when it happened twice!
The description states: "Please exercise caution when fishing for billfish. Their bills are sharp and can be very dangerous."
Crocodile Bay Resort is located at the edge of the rainforest on Costa Rica's Osa Peninsula, which is famous for its rich ecological biodiversity.
Beyond the bay, in the Pacific, is a seasonal feeding area for sailfish, and anglers sometimes catch and release several of the scrappy billfish per day.
The resort frowns upon keeping sailfish, and hopes that many years pass before another jumps into one of its boats.
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