Maine fisherman gives away 600-pound tuna to soup kitchen
A 600-pound tuna accidentally caught by a Maine fishing crew yielded roughly 350 plates of meals for a local charity center.
The skipper of the Kathryn Ann, Ross Alex, claimed he and his crew were fishing for lobster bait off the coast of Belfast when something unexpected was caught in their nets.
Alex tells the media, “We saw some fish kind of popping off the surface, so we were getting ready to set, and we made our set and kind of hauled our netback. The fish went gone. We were like, ‘Where did they go?’ We got our net, like, three-quarters of the way back, and there was a tuna.”
According to Alex, because the vessel was not licensed to catch bluefin tuna, they tried to free the large fish, but it was too entangled in the nets to be saved.
The Maine Marine Patrol was contacted by Jamie Steeves, the owner of J&J Lobsters, to explain the situation. Steeve’s contact made the necessary phone calls to obtain permission from the boat’s crew to harvest and donate the tuna.
Steeves’ friend Doug Shartzer was called in to butcher the fish and arrange for its donation to the Belfast Soup Kitchen.
The 600-pound tuna was turned into about 350 servings of food for the community on Tuesday, according to officials at the soup kitchen.
According to Cherie Merrill, executive director of the Belfast Soup Kitchen, “I think it’s a wonderful opportunity for the people of Waldo County, for us to be able to give them this through Belfast Soup Kitchen.”
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