An Alabama girl was fishing in a event when one thing actually sudden occurred—a big, pregnant eagle ray jumped into her boat. “We have been each within the unsuitable place on the unsuitable time,” angler April Jones advised AL.com “I assumed we hit a wave. Water got here in. I felt like one thing hit me. I didn’t know what it was. I simply noticed a blob.”
Properly, the blob was a 5-foot, 400-plus-pound noticed eagle ray that was pregnant with 4 pups. It jumped into the again of Jones’ boat whereas Jones was fishing within the 2022 Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo within the Gulf of Mexico. The ray could have been attempting to flee from a predator when it launched out of the water and into the boat. Jones’s husband was driving the boat when the incident happened. Whereas the ray was aboard, it stress-birthed 4 pups, which didn’t survive.
The couple, along with their 8-year-old son and Jones’s husband’s grandfather, couldn’t raise the ray out of the vessel. They motored to a ship ramp with the ray on board, took some pictures of the massive fish, and recruited a few others to assist them return the animal to the water.
“The character of enormous rays like that is to typically go airborne,” Brian Jones, Dauphin Island Sea Lab Estuarium senior aquarist, advised AL.com.The aquarist arrived on the port shortly after the Jones household arrived with its unexcepted cargo. The feminine ray was already again within the water, however Brian Jones collected the 4 lifeless pups for analysis. Rays usually hatch younger internally after which carry them till they’re developed sufficient for delivery and separation from the mom. It wasn’t clear how shut the pups have been to be able to be birthed.
In response to WKRG, April Jones went to the E.R. for a sprained shoulder she suffered throughout the incident. Regardless of her damage, she fished the Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo the following day and managed to catch a qualifying black drum whereas fishing from a pier.
“We did the very best we might to maintain the mama alive till we might get assist,” Jones explained on Facebook. “We’re devastated the infants didn’t survive, however there was nothing we might have carried out.”