Leap lands 375-pound shark in fishing boat

In this photo provided March 29, 2011, by Jason Kresse shows Kreese with a 375-pound, 8-foot long mako shark at a dock in Freeport, Texas. Kresse tells The Associated Press that the mako shark leapt into his boat while he and two others were fishing for red snapper in the Gulf of Mexico on Monday. Kresse said he and his crew couldn't get close to the 375-pound fish to toss it back in the water. It damaged the boat before dying several hours later. (AP Photo/courtesy Jason Kresse)
March 30, 2011 7:56:23 AM PDT
A fisherman holding an eight-foot shark; it's the kind of picture you know comes with an incredible story.

At Captain Mark's Freeport Fish Market in Freeport, you can take home about any catch, but what happened Monday was a first and it's the talk of the town.

"It's amazing," one Freeport resident said.

Almost 400 pounds, what big eyes and those teeth -- even the phones at City Hall were ringing off the hook.

"Definitely something you want to give their space in the water," Freeport City Manager Jeff Pynes said.

Commercial fisherman Jason Kresse was fishing about 50 miles offshore Monday morning with two other men in a 25-foot boat when a mako shark jumped right in.

"If I heard the story right, it jumped in the boat? I think I'd be jumping out of the boat," Freeport resident Al Day said.

"Definitely, he learned all of his skills from me," said Joe Kresse, Jason Kresse's father.

His parents say the tale might be hard to believe, if they couldn't see it for themselves.

"I'm glad it didn't eat one of them and I'm not surprised. If anything strange is going to happen, it's going to happen to him," Joe Kresse said.

Perhaps no one appreciates this catch more than Aaron Perez. Almost seven years ago, he was attacked by a bull shark on Bryan Beach. First it attacked his leg, then his arm.

"It definitely hits home to see something that big," Perez said.

It was so big that it was not a catch you could easily throw back.

"He's going to have it mounted, the fish story of all time," Jason Kresse's mother, Kimberly Kresse, said.

So the tale ends here.

"We'll be able to see it forever. It's quite a fish," Joe Kresse said.

Friends and family of Jason Kresse and his crew are very relieved they weren't injured. They say the shark died about four hours after jumping into the boat, but his mouth was opening and closing for a very long time before that.

Mako sharks are known as the fastest shark and can swim up to 30 miles an hour. They are found in tropical and temperate seas around the world. The can grow up to 13 feet long and weigh as much as 1,000 pounds. They prey on fish and small aquatic mammals.

Mako sharks are known for their fighting abilities and for constantly leaping out of the water.


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