Officials in Spain rescued a 4,000-pound sunfish and freed it back into the ocean

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Officials in Spain report rescuing a sunfish weighing 4,000 pounds and returning it to the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Ceuta – a Spanish city in northern Africa earlier this month.

According to Reuters, the fish had been snagged in the net of a tuna fishing boat on October 4. When the fishermen spotted the enormous fish caught in the net, they “isolated” the fish in an underwater compartment attached to the boat until scientists arrived. Then they used two cranes to lift the fish out of the water.

Scientists with the University of Seville measured the fish to be 10 1/2 feet long and 9 1/2 feet wide weighing more than 4,000 pounds. The fish was too heavy for the scale to get an exact weight. They then took photos and DNA samples before returning the fish to the water. The gigantic fish was only out of the water for a few minutes before being freed.

The National Parks Service identifies the ocean sunfish as the world’s largest bony fish which can weigh up to 5,000 pounds. They are found all over the world but prefer waters warmer than 54 degrees. Their population is on the decline, and at this time the species is listed as “vulnerable.”

Check out the video. Check out his prehistoric head too.

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