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Bizarre fish with a mouth full of human-like teeth is caught off the coast of North Carolina

Smile for the camera! Bizarre fish with a mouth full of human-like teeth is caught off the coast of North Carolina

  • A sheepshead fish was caught off the coast of North Carolina last week
  • The fish is common in the Atlantic Ocean, but is known as a bizarre creature 
  • It has several rows of teeth that look just like human teeth
  • The fish uses its large teeth to crunch down on shell fish 

An angler fishing at Jennette’s Pier in North Carolina was surprised when the fish he caught had a full mouth of human-like teeth.

The nine-pound sheepshead fish is a common dweller of the Atlantic Ocean and uses its large molars to feast on a variety of oysters, clams and other crustaceans.

Nathan Martin, from South Mills, caught the sheepshead fish using sand fleas as bait.

‘It’s a very good fight when you’re fighting on the line, it’s a really good catch, and it tastes very good,’ Martin told McClatchy News before adding that he plans to mount the sheepshead on his wall.

An angler fishing at Jennette’s Pier in North Carolina was surprised when the fish he caught had a full mouth of human-like teeth

The photos, which were published on Facebook on August 3, later went viral, and many people commented under the post in disbelief after seeing the creature with a mouth full of human-like teeth.

One Facebook user wrote, ‘Is this where dentures come from?’ while another person said, ‘Those fish have the freakiest teeth.’

One person also joked, ‘That fish has better teeth than me!’

No one really knows where the fish got its name, but it’s been suggested that it’s because its teeth also resemble those of sheep.

The nine-pound sheepshead fish is a common dweller of the Atlantic Ocean and uses its large molars to feast on a variety of oysters, clams and other crustaceans. Nathan Martin (right), from South Mills, caught the sheepshead fish using sand fleas as bait

The nine-pound sheepshead fish is a common dweller of the Atlantic Ocean and uses its large molars to feast on a variety of oysters, clams and other crustaceans. Nathan Martin (right), from South Mills, caught the sheepshead fish using sand fleas as bait

Sheepshead fish can be found on the Gulf and the Atlantic coasts of the United States. And Sheepshead Bay in New York City was even named after the creepy-looking fish, although the species is no longer found that far north

Sheepshead fish can be found on the Gulf and the Atlantic coasts of the United States. And Sheepshead Bay in New York City was even named after the creepy-looking fish, although the species is no longer found that far north

And Sheepshead Bay in New York City was even named after the creepy-looking fish, although the species is no longer found that far north.

The fish is also referred to as the ‘convict fish’ for its dark stripes that run down its gray body, which looks similar to a prison jump suit.

It can grow up three feet long and has several rows of stubby teeth – the frontal ones closely resembling human teeth – which help crush the shells of prey, according to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

Although their teeth look threatening to humans, David Catania, California Academy of Science collections manager for ichthyology, told Snopes: ‘I would not hesitate to swim in waters inhabited by these fish.

Another sheepshead fish was pulled from the waters around South Carolina in 2018 and wildlife experts had some fun on Facebook after they posted a photo of an unidentified fish to see if the public could identify it

Another sheepshead fish was pulled from the waters around South Carolina in 2018 and wildlife experts had some fun on Facebook after they posted a photo of an unidentified fish to see if the public could identify it

‘They pose no threat to humans unless harassed. Since they are good to eat, sheepshead are targeted by anglers, so the handling of one after capture creates the possibility of being bitten or poked by their sharp dorsal fin spines.’

Another sheepshead fish was pulled from the waters around South Carolina in 2018 and wildlife experts had some fun on Facebook after they posted a photo of an unidentified fish to see if the public could identify it.

‘You’ll need a saltwater fishing license to catch me! I like to hang out near rocks, jetties, reefs, and even bridges. I’m also known as the convict fish because of my black and white stripes,’ biologists wrote in the caption in May 2018.

‘The coolest thing about me? I have human-like incisors and molars to help crush my food. I like shrimp and oysters just like you do!’ the post continued.

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