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(Ocean) Sunfish, Mola mola

Irish Record Fish: not recognised
Caught: not reported
Boat Specimen: not recognised
Shore Specimen: not recognised
Photo Credit:

John A Kirata

Introduction: A very rare visitor and curiosity, with a small one caught off the wexford coast in 2002, the ocean sunfish is the heaviest bony fish swimming anywhere in the world.  It can weight up to 2000 kgs!  Typically found sunning itself on the ocean waves, the sunfish will feed on mollusks, jellyfish, fish, in fact anything it comes across that is edible.  With global warming and the increase in charter boat fishing in Irish waters, we will see more reports of this remarkable fish.  See how it compares to the guy's feet!

Boat tactics: Find one first and provide it does not scoot off in a flurry, then try to float fish a fresh mackerel bait on a very stong hook in its direction.  The teeth are fused to form a small parrot like beak of a mouth that is very sharp and extremely strong.  A forged bronzed hook is a good idea... they are sighted during the summer every year but few are actually landed on rod and line.

Shore tactics: And if you do catch one from the shore in Ireland, don't forget to do the lotto too ;-)