Diver Captures Footage Of Sawfish Using Its Chainsaw Head To Hunt A Massive Bait Ball Of Fish

Diver Captures Footage Of Sawfish Using Its Chainsaw Head To Hunt A Massive Bait Ball Of Fish

iStockphoto / frameyazoo

  • A diver was spearfishing in 65-feet of water off St. Lucie Inlet in Florida when she spotted two incredibly rare sawfish feeding on a bait ball of fish
  • These are some of the rarest fish in Florida and Julie Higgs filmed the sawfish using its chainsaw-like rostrum to feed on the fish, a sight that’s rarely seen by humans
  • Read more SAWFISH articles here

Julie Higgs has been diving her entire life and until now has never seen a sawfish in the water. That changed when she and a diving partner went spearfishing off St. Lucie Inlet in Florida at a wreck in 65-feet of water. When she dove down to investigate a large bait ball she saw not one but TWO of these insanely rare dinosaur-like fish.

Sawfish are amongst the coolest-looking species in the ocean. They have these massive chainsaw-like rostrums that look like someone strapped a chainsaw to a shark’s body.

There was a time when sawfish were abundant in the waters around Florida but they were nearly fished to extinction. Their ‘saws’ were prized decorations for fishermen and hung on walls like mounted fish and these days they are rare enough to be considered an endangered species, according to Ed Killer of TC Palm who was first to share this stunning footage of the sawfish hunting a bait ball.

Diver Captures Footage Of Sawfish Using Its Chainsaw Head To Hunt

Her YouTube caption reads:

Went spearfishing with my new friend JJ. We stopped at a wreck close to shore and found a few sawfish feeding on a bait ball. What an amazing sight!! Sawfish are extremely rare!! This is my first sawfish sighting and I have been diving my whole life!! I was lucky enough to see 2 of these beautiful animals. Both were actively hunting!! I have been told that this might be the only video of sawfish hunting in the wild!

According to Ed Killer’s report, Julie Higgs (the diver filming) works at the St. Lucie County Fire Rescue and spends her days off spearfishing and diving off Florida’s East Coast. She and her friend Jean-Jacques Rousseau went to the Bull Shark Barge which is 2.5-miles southeast of the St. Lucie Inlet.

Julie immediately spotted the massive bait ball of fish that was around 50 feet wide and she quickly took notice of a sawfish. Then she dove down a second time and was astonished to see there was a second sawfish down there.

In the video, we can see her repeatedly coming up to the air for a breath while diving deep again to get a good look at the two sawfish and we get a great look at one of the fish using its chainsaw-like rostrum to feed on the bait ball.

How Rare Are These Dinosaurs?

I’m a born and raised Floridian and I’ve never seen one up close and only ever seen them in aquariums. There’s a bit of a disconnect with how rare they are and how often they’re seen in the news. I’ve written about sawfish sightings many times here at BroBible and they’re so rare that every time there’s a major sighting it makes national news, giving the impression there are more of these fish than there really are.

They can grow up to 25-feet in length! As recently as 2015, there were estimates of somewhere between 500 and 5,000 of the Largetooth Sawfish left in the wild (in Florida). So seeing two of these together, hunting, and looking healthy is encouraging to conservationists.

For more on this incredible encounter, you can check out Ed Killer’s article on TC Palm.