A Face Only a Mother Could Love: Maine Fishermen Catch 'Vicious' Wolffish

A group of Maine fishermen had a close encounter with a hungry wolffish, footage shared to TikTok shows.

Jacob Knowles, a fifth-generation fisherman, shared footage of the unusual underwater creature on his TikTok account on July 21.

The video, captured by his sternman Keith Potter, sees Knowles introduce viewers to the powerful fish, which wriggles around in his hands trying to escape, after getting caught in one of the vessel’s lobster traps.

Described as “voracious predators” by Oceana.org, Knowles said the fish “killed everything” in the trap it found itself in.

Knowles soon feeds the fish one of the lobsters which he said it had already killed, sending it back into the sea with the wolffish’s treat still very much in its jaws.

“We don’t catch wolffish often,” Knowles told Storyful, “maybe two or three a year.” He said the crew always notice them immediately owing to their distinctive coloring.

However, he added, the crew are “usually not very excited to see them” as they’re “a handful to get out of the traps”.

He added that they have a “vicious bite”, in keeping with their name. “They don’t behave like most fish while handling them. Most fish just try to get away from you. Wolffish try to get you.” Credit: Jacob Knowles via Storyful

Video transcript

JACOB KNOWLES: So the last video I posted of this thing, everybody said, oh, they're friendly, they're nice. Yeah, well, you've never tried to get one out of a trap. Look at him trying to bite me. They can bite, too. Look at him.

He killed everything in the trap. We don't get them very often. They're protected. We let them go as soon as we get them

I guess we'll give him a snack seeing how he already killed everything. Before we give the wolffish the lobster, I just wanted to point out we gave the wolffish one of the dead ones that he'd already killed. You just know how sensitive TikTok can be. And this is a really cool video and I just don't want it taken down.

It's no different than the fish that we give the lobsters for a snack. It's just got a little more intense sound effects. That's a nice keeper, too. I'm scared.

- I'm telling you.

JACOB KNOWLES: Look at that.

So the last video I posted of this thing, everybody said, oh, they're friendly, they're nice. Yeah, well, you've never tried to get one out of a trap. Look at him trying to bite me. They can bite, too. Look at him.

He killed everything in the trap. We don't get them very often. They're protected. We let them go as soon as we get them.

I guess we'll give him a snack seeing how he already killed everything. Before we give the wolffish the lobster, I just wanted to point out we gave the wolffish one of the dead ones that he'd already killed. You just know how sensitive TikTok can be. And this is a really cool video and I just don't want it taken down.

It's no different than the fish that we give the lobsters for a snack. It's just got a little more intense sound effects. That's a nice keeper, too. I'm scared.

- I'm telling you.

JACOB KNOWLES: Look at that.

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