Friends net tuna 'worth £1 million': with one small catch

Friends net £1m tunaA group of 20-something friends hauled a massive tuna ashore while they were on holiday in Cornwall. Some experts are claiming that the 300lb, 2.17m-long monster fish could be worth as much as £1 million.

However, there's just one small catch - it's a bluefin tuna, and as a result is illegal to catch or sell in the UK.%VIRTUAL-SkimlinksPromo%

The BBC reported that Hannah Ford (24), Sarah Little (22), Shauna Creamer (23), Charlotte Chambers (24) and Laura Pickervance (23) found the dead fish at sea at Kingsand in Cornwall. They managed to bring it ashore - with the help of a sea kayak. But once they got to the beach, even though four men tried to help them turn it over, the fish was too enormous for even this crowd to manoeuvre.

The incredible price put on its head seems to be a generous estimate, but in Japan this is considered a delicacy in sushi, and because of its rarity, it fetches high prices. So, for example, a bluefin tuna sold last year in Japan for £1.05 million - a record for the species. However, this monster was 489lbs, was caught fresh rather than dragged ashore dead, and the buyer admitted it had been a steep price.

Fortunately the friends weren't hoping to cash in, which is just as well, because bluefin tuna is critically endangered after over-fishing caused numbers to start declining in 1960 and accelerate dramatically in the decades since. As such it cannot be caught or sold in the UK.

According to the Metro, the Marine Management Organisation removed the fish, which will be studied by scientists at the University of Exeter.

Washed ashore

This is far from the most unusual thing to have ended up stranded on a beach. With several million tonnes of all sorts of things crossing the oceans every year, there's a huge amount of competition for the weirdest to have been sent overboard and washed up on a beach. Here are five of the most unusual:

1. Rubber ducks. 28,000 of these went overboard in the middle of the Pacific Ocean in 1992, and have been washing ashore all over the world - from Alaska to Scotland and Hawaii - ever since.

2. BMW Motorbikes. In 2007 the MSC Napoli sunk with cargo that included several of the bikes. Cargo began washing up at Branscombe in Devon, and early scavengers picked up a number of bikes before the police pointed out that this constituted theft and closed the beach.

3. $1 million of cocaine. This was washed ashore in Florida in 2009, and the owners were never traced.

4. Tea and biscuits. Hundreds of packets of tea and biscuits were washed ashore in the Raigad district of Maharashta in India in 2010. There were reports at the time of people swimming in the oil left by the damaged ship in order to retrieve them.

5. A Lego Man. This wasn't exactly washed ashore, but in 2008 a giant Lego man appeared in the foam on Brighton Beach. There were several theories and it drew large crowds, until a spokeswoman for Lego said the artist responsible was advertising an exhibition in London.

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