Monday, March 3, 2008


Big rare fish found in Tuaran, taken to museum


A mola fish or known as ‘sunfish’ - the heaviest bony fish in the world - was found by a resident of Kampung Lok Nunuk here early Saturday morning. Jarin b Atun, 37, said he was checking his boat at the shore when he saw a black object floating 50metres from the shore about 6am. He then took his boat and went to have a closer look at the object which was moving. “I was so surprised that it was a big fish with no tail and it was still alive,” Jarin said, adding that he immediately informed his family members and villagers. It was learnt that it took more than 10 men to bring the fish ashore. However, it died a few minutes later. Fisherman Jaafar bin Hj Musa, 79, and the other villagers said that they had never seen such kind of fish before. Sabah b Kaloh, who is the deputy chairman of the Village Development and Security Committee, then asked Ariffin Gadait who is attached to the Assistant State Secretary’s Office in the Chief Minister’s Department to identify the species of the fish. According to Ariffin, the fish was six feet long and four feet wide. Its eyes were three inches wide while its mouth was six inches wide. He said its pectoral fins which were round like a fan, were 10 inches long while both of its dorsal fins and anal were 33 inches long. “There were no signs of injuries on the body of the fish,” Ariffin said when he was further asked about the condition of the fish. He brought the fish to the State Museum yesterday in his Land Rover vehicle. Ariffin said the residents of Kampung Lok Nunuk wanted the museum to preserve and display the fish. The mola is found in all tropical oceans and is known to eat gelatinous zooplankton (jellyfish), crustaceans, plankton, small fishes and comb jellies. It can grow from one tenth of an inch to a fully matured fish reaching up to 12 feet in length and 14 feet from fin to fin. Some records show molas weighed over 4,000 pounds.