A 661-pound giant stingray caught in a Cambodian river is believed to be the largest freshwater fish ever encountered by researchers.
Scientists with the Wonders of Mekong research project said they were installing underwater receivers to track migratory fish in the Mekong River in northern Cambodia and had asked local fishermen to get into contact if they made any significant catches.
The group was contacted by a 42-year-old fisherman who landed a 661-pound giant stingray in the Stung Treng area.
The scientists paid the fisherman for his catch and released the stingray after they weighed, measured and tagged the fish.
Wonders of Mekong researcher Zeb Hogan, a fish biologist at the University of Nevada and host of National Geographic’s Monster Fish TV series, said the massive fish could help researchers learn more about giant stingrays.
“You have a fish that’s now the record holder for the world’s largest freshwater fish, and we know little about it,” Hogan told NBC News.
The stingray took the record for largest freshwater fish from a 646-pound Mekong giant catfish caught in Thailand in 2005.