In Southeast Asia, the fish spear you. That’s right, a young fisherman is lucky to be alive after a fish impaled him through the neck while he was fishing in Southern Indonesia.
Muhammad Idul, 16, was fishing with his family in the waters off Wakinamboro village when a school of needlefish — a marine creature with a long snout and tack-like teeth — started jumping out of the water, CEN reports.
Idul got a closer look than intended when one of the creatures hopped into his boat and stabbed him in the throat with its sharp snout, knocking him into the water.
Graphic photos show that the critter’s needle-like nose gouged all the way through the back of his neck and exited out the other side.
Fortunately, Idul was able to swim back to the vessel and walk home with his unfortunate piercing still lodged in his neck. However, it was so firmly embedded that the teen had to be transferred from a Southeast Sulawesi hospital to a facility in Makassar for emergency surgery.
It took a team of three surgeons and two anesthesiologists an agonizing two hours to remove the fish’s noggin from Idul’s neck (grisly photos show the entire extracted head by the operating table), according to 7 News. While the accident was indeed unfortunate, the fish head’s precarious position ironically helped staunch the bleeding.
Fortunately, Idul is said to be in stable condition, and will remain under observation in the hospital for three to four days to prevent any infections, says anesthesiologist Syafri K Arif.
This isn’t the first time a needlefish has turned the tables on a fisherman. A 10-year-old boy in Hawaii died during a nocturnal fishing trip with his dad in 1977 when a needlefish pierced his eye. And in 2018, 22-year-old Thai navy cadet Kriangsak Pengpanich was killed after getting speared during a training exercise.
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