"I never thought I'd be able to add 'stingray midwife' to my resume," Fort Worth resident Nicholas Long said.
But after his latest guys trip over Memorial Day Weekend, he just might.
Long caught what he estimates was a 40-pound stingray Sunday while fishing from a pier along San Luis Pass on Texas' Gulf Coast.
"About 30 mins after getting setup to fish, my buddy Nicholas Folsom hooked up to something huge. His pole about bent to the water," Long said. "Shortly thereafter, my line got hit with the fury! I didn’t have a clue what it was, all I knew was that it was good size. I fought it for about 15 mins. Once it broke the surface I saw it was a stingray."
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As he brought it up to the pier, a small crowd started to gather. They noticed she was bloated, so Jason Elizondo of Houston took out his phone and started filming.
Then, her water broke, spraying a steady stream. As Long tried to bring her back to the water while avoiding her barb, the small crowd that had gathered after the unusual catch got to bear witness to the miracle of life.
Four baby stingrays tumbled out of the new mother and onto the pier.
Long, 38, said he and his buddies go on fishing trips to the Gulf of Mexico three times a year. None of them had ever seen anything like this, though.
"Needless to say she was the most exciting catch of the weekend," Long said.
He untangled mama stingray and set her free in the water below while their buddies tossed her babies back in with her.
"No babies were harmed!" Long wrote in his caption when he shared Elizondo's video on Facebook. "The mother is doing fine as well."
As of Tuesday the video had been viewed on Facebook more than 4,500 times.