The heaviest fish in the world is the ocean sunfish. The heaviest one ever caught weighed in at 2.3 metric tons (5,071 pounds). It was measured as being 2.7 meters (8.9 feet) long. The fish was captured in 1996 off the Kamogawa, Japan coast.
The said fish was measured by Kamogawa SeaWorld members. It is not the longest ever measured, but it is the heaviest. To date however, it has not been measured by the Guinness Book of Records. The record holder in Guinness is also an ocean fish.
The fish was struck on September 1908 off Sydney. The creature weighed 4,927 pounds. It was 4.26 meters (14 feet) in vertical length and (10 feet) in horizontal length. However, some biologists have cast doubts about the accuracy of the measurements. Whatever the case may be, the specimen captured off Kamogawa is still the top candidate for the heaviest fish in the world.
Other Facts about the Ocean Sunfish
The sunfish belongs to the Molidae family. The fish can be found in tropical and temperate waters around the planet. The sunfish is also known as the mola. Many specimens weigh over 2,260 kg (nearly 5,000 pounds) and can reach 10 feet (3 meters) across. Vertically the fish can reach 14 feet (4 meters).
Besides the size, the fish has a peculiar body. The body is like a bullet. It doesn’t curtail to the rear to make a rear fin. The back fin doesn’t grow. As the fish gets older, the fin will fold. The sunfish also has pectoral fins at the bottom and the back. Most specimens have a bland color. Some are white and grey with some light colors.
Diet and Other Features
Due to its fin, the ocean sunfish is sometimes confused with the shark. However, the mola is non-threatening to humans. The sunfish’s body is large, but its mouth is small in relation. The creature usually feeds on crustaceans, sponges, squid and jellyfish. Eel larvae and small fish are also part of their diet.
Given its size, the sunfish does not have any predators. The only possible threats are giant orcas or sea lions. Far more serious problems are parasites. 40 types of parasites live in the fish.
The heaviest fish in the world is a friendly creature. People can swim beside it without a problem. But due to its massive dimensions, it may inadvertently injure people or boats.