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What This Fisherman Pulled Out Of The Ocean Is More Than 7,000 Years Old

Courtesy of Ardboe Gallery (Facebook)

We all hope to find something extraordinary at some point in our lives, whether it be buried treasures or an object that could shed light on the past.

People who have stumbled upon precious artifacts were simply at the right place at the right time.

While many of us don't have those perfect chances, at least we can rejoice in these findings, especially when it comes to historical information.

Two fishermen from Ireland considered themselves awfully unlucky after a bad night’s fishing.

When Raymond McElroy and Charlie Coyle checked their net early in the morning, they noticed they hadn't caught even one fish at a lake near the town of Ardboe.

Although they didn't catch fish, the net was straining.  

In a matter of seconds, their luck was soon about to change...

It took a lot of effort until they were able to hoist the net out of the water, but when they did, they were shocked at what they saw inside.

At first, they thought they caught a piece of a dead tree, but upon further inspection, they discovered a skull with antlers.

"I thought it was the devil himself," Coyle told The Irish Times. "I was going to throw it back in. I didn't know what to do with it."

At six feet across, the two fisherman learned that they had just caught a giant Irish elk, which is now extinct.

The Irish elk, which is actually a type of deer, once roamed northern Europe, and became extinct approximately 7,000 years ago.

It's believed that environmental change is the reason why these species of large deer died off.

As for what's to happen to the bones of this ancient animal, that's up to the fishermen to decide.

McElroy is waiting for someone interested to come forward.

Having said that, if the fishermen decide to give this piece of history away, the National History Museum in Dublin has one of the largest collections of the Irish elk.

[H/T: Irish Times]

What would you do if you stumbled upon a piece of history?

Moojan has been a writer at Shared for a year. When she's not on the lookout for viral content, she's looking at cute animal photos. Reach her at moojan@shared.com.