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Jan 08, 2013


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john dressing

the ribbon fish in the picture , is what we call in south africa a WALAWALA , catch plenty at night off the piers [ durban ] fillet them and it makes a nice long bait . roll the fillet up and its good eating . trawl them dead, for king fish , sail fish etc . caught plenty of them .


Showed the Japanese Sushi chef the photos...he says "scabbard fish"


My first thought is that it is a fake. I'm not happy with the reporting of this story. The fish had no head: did it have a mouth? Did it have gills? What makes them think it was a fish and not a worm? Why didn't the reporter ask if the fish had a mouth?

The fishermen claim to have realized they caught a fish unknown to science, but they filleted it and tossed it overboard. They saved the meat to cook, but not eat, but then they threw the meat away rather than to donate it to a scientist? The only evidence offered is a collection of photgraphs that answers none of my questions.

I don't positively know that this is a fake, nor do I know anything negative about the characters of the fishermen or reporters. I believe there undiscovered species of living things waiting for us to discover. But the burden of proof is on the fishermen. And so far, all I have heard is another fish story, and quite a fishy fish story at that.


ribbon fish



Regalecus russelii, without its fins, head and tail.

It is seemingly too lengthy to be the aforementioned alternatives. However, in contrast, it could simply be emaciated.


This actually does look like a scabbardfish, which have already been known to reach 6 ft 7 inches. Seven feet is not that much longer. This may be the largest find of its species, but it's a much closer match than an oarfish. It has no dorsal fin. Silver scabbardfish are also native to Hawaiian waters.



Ken Grossman

This is a cutlass fish. I caught one off the Island of Trinidad. I didn't catch it, per se, it swam into my 10 foot dingy as I was backing up. I got it in about 30 feet of water. I brought it to the Trinidad Yacht Club and the members identified it immediately. It is not edible. It is very oily and delicate. I understand why part of the head and tail are missing in the photo. Do an image search for cutlass fish and you'll see more.

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