Those who spent the weekend waiting impatiently for the mystery of the softball-sized eyeball in Florida to be solved can now start the new week with a sigh of relief. It in all likelihood came from a swordfish.
"Experts on site and remotely have viewed and analyzed the eye, and based on its color, size and structure, along with the presence of bone around it, we believe the eye came from a swordfish," said Joan Herrera, curator of collections at the FWC's Fish and Wildlife Research Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., said in a statement Monday.
The giant blue eye was found washed up on Pompano Beach north of Ft. Lauderdale by Gino Covacci while out for a stroll. However, the identity of the creature that lost the eye has, until now, remained a mystery.
The eye was fully intact and, according to Covacci, "it was fresh," which begs the question: how did it wind up there? That mystery has also been solved, says Herrera.
"Based on straight-line cuts visible around the eye, we believe it was removed by a fisherman and discarded."
Experts will conduct genetic testing to verify their findings. It wasn't immediately clear how large a swordfish this eye might have come from, but the species can grow as large as 1,400 pounds.