Needle fish article

Needle fish article

Post by Glenn Woode » Thu, 20 Apr 2000 04:00:00

From the CNN website:

*** almost killed when needle-nosed fish
                  stabs her in neck

                  April 19, 2000
                  Web posted at: 6:55 AM EDT (1055 GMT)

                  BIG PINE KEY, Florida (AP) -- A 17-year-old girl
snorkeling for the first time
                  was almost killed when a needle-nosed houndfish
jumped out of the water in the
                  Florida Keys and struck her in the neck.

                  Stephanie Mittler was recovering Tuesday after
emergency surgery to close her
                  wounds and remove two pieces of the fish's serrated
bill, including one that
                  came within a millimeter of her carotid artery.

                  Stephanie, her sister Jennifer and a friend were
snorkeling Sunday in the waters
                  of the Florida Keys. Stephanie was standing in
chest-high water when the fish
                  jumped from the ocean and struck her in the neck.

                  "*** was just gushing from my neck," she said from
her hospital bed, her
                  voice weak and raspy. "It was pretty scary."

                  Jennifer and the friend surfaced and found Stephanie
bleeding profusely.
                  Thinking she had been attacked by a shark, the girls
pushed Stephanie onto their
                  pontoon boat and hurried her to shore. She was then
rushed to the hospital.

                  Houndfish are related to needlefish, average between
three and six pounds and
                  are feared by fishermen because they can leap from
the water and inflict stab
                  wounds when startled.

                  Laura Mittler, Stephanie's mother, said it is
"ironic" her daughter was injured by a
                  fish.

                  "She hates seafood and she hates fish," Mittler said.
"I told her the fish gods have
                  gotten back at her for hating them so much."