BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Winning the lottery twice probably has longer odds, but the same fisherman catching the same rare fish has got to be up there.
It happened to Austin Ensor, who hooked his second surprise in a month this past weekend.
Ensor was in a boat 62 miles off the coast of Ocean City on Saturday, in roughly the same area where he caught a 105-pound Opah in November. He reeled in his second Opah, the world’s only known warm blooded fish, this one weighing 160 pounds.
“Yes, it was pretty unreal when we saw the second one coming up,” Ensor told WJZ. “Just couldn’t believe our eyes, you know. The sheer shock of, ‘Holy crap, there’s another one.'”
That’s because Opahs are more commonly found in the Pacific Ocean, and even then catching one is a rare event. It’s believed Ensor is the first recreational fisherman to catch not just one, but two Opahs in Maryland waters.
“All over the world they’re caught here and there, nothing really consistent, so to catch two in a month, we’re really excited about it,” Ensor says.
Opahs are considered a delicacy and restaurants will pay thousands of dollars for a single fish. But because Ensor is not a commercial fisherman, it is against the law for him to sell his catch. Instead he’ll do what he did with his first Opah, and host another communal dinner for family and friends.