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Australia Extraordinary encounter with one of the world's biggest fish is caught on camera off Bondi Beach

07:05  19 november  2019
07:05  19 november  2019 Source:   dailymail.co.uk

Giant sunfish spotted off Bondi Beach

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Extraordinary encounter with one of the world ' s biggest fish is caught on camera off Bondi Young diver experienced extremely rare encounter with world ' s largest bony fish Aaron Puckeridge filmed himself swimming with a sunfish off of Bondi Beach Aaron Puckeridge and his father were swimming off Bondi Beach , Sydney, when they spotted a

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a man holding a fish on a boat in a body of water: Mr Puckeridge (pictured with a previous haul from a spearfishing trip) said he and his father had no idea what it was under them until they dove down to see the world's largest bony fish© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Mr Puckeridge (pictured with a previous haul from a spearfishing trip) said he and his father had no idea what it was under them until they dove down to see the world's largest bony fish A diver had an extraordinary and rare encounter with the world's largest bony fish while he was snorkelling with his father.

Aaron Puckeridge and his father were swimming off Bondi Beach, Sydney, when they spotted a dark shadow in the water.

The pair had no idea what was swimming below them until Mr Puckeridge dived down and came face-to-face with the rare 2.5 metre long sunfish.

'(We) didn't actually know what it was to start with, because it was just this big object, motionless in the water,' Mr Puckeridge told 9News.

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Head of the Macquarie University Fish Lab, Professor Culum Brown said the encounter was an extremely rare occurrence because sunfish only rarely come close to the shallows© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Head of the Macquarie University Fish Lab, Professor Culum Brown said the encounter was an extremely rare occurrence because sunfish only rarely come close to the shallows

'I looked right in its eye at one point, that was pretty much the only reaction I got from it, it actually kind of retracted its eye back a bit, and it disappeared behind all these folds of flesh.'

The sunfish sat motionless allowing smaller fish to clean it of parasites while the father and son pair filmed themselves swimming with it.

Sunfish can grow up to two tonnes in size and are rarely seen at any time let alone so close to shore.

Head of the Macquarie University Fish Lab, Professor Culum Brown, told Daily Mail Australia the encounter was an extremely rare occurrence.

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The common skate fish , which was caught off the Isle of Skye, was so big that fisherman Daniel Bennett spent two hours struggling to reel it in. Nick Simmonds, secretary of the British Record Fish Committee, said: 'There is not a larger fish recorded as being caught on our current record list.

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Sydney diver Aaron Puckeridge (pictured) swims with a rare and giant 2.5 metre long sunfish only 30 metres of of Bondi Beach after encountering the animal while snorkelling© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Sydney diver Aaron Puckeridge (pictured) swims with a rare and giant 2.5 metre long sunfish only 30 metres of of Bondi Beach after encountering the animal while snorkelling

THE OCEANIC SUNFISH

Lives up to 10 years

Can grow to between 11 to 14 feet in length

Are known to weigh up to 2.5 tonnes

Population is declining

Found in temperate and tropical oceans around the world

Heaviest of all bony fish

Clumsy swimmers

Population is considered to be in a vulnerable state.

'It's really rare, I've been diving for 25 to 30 years and I've never seen one before, so it is an interesting encounter,' Professor Brown said.

'They are an oceanic fish so they tend to be well away from the land and only really ever come to the shallows or the surface to warm up or be cleaned.'

With a primary diet of jelly fish, which they hunt at depths of hundreds of metres, the sunfish requires smaller fish nearer to the surface to clean it of parasites.

They are only found in shallow water when getting cleaned and close to the surface when warming up from a hunt.

'It obviously needed it and it's also a good sign for our beaches because they prefer clean water,' Professor Brown said.

'They are totally bizarre, there is no other animal in their group which can grow over a tonne.'

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Footage appears to show her punching, kicking and slinging sand at the men.The two rangers approached the woman as she filmed some friends climbing on a World War II structure on Bribie Island on Saturday, police said.

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