MANHATTAN BEACH ( — A fisherman on the Manhattan Beach pier got a big surprise Tuesday when he reeled in a great white shark.

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It happened just before 5 p.m. at the hugely popular spot for swimmers and surfers.

Eric Martin, the director of the Roundhouse Marine Studies Lab and Aquarium in Manhattan Beach, witnessed the rare sight.

“I basically said, ‘Holy crap, that’s a great white shark,’” said Martin.

Aquarium worker Laura Gill said it was her first great white sighting.

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“It was exciting…(The fisherman) actually called the director from the aquarium and was like, ‘Hey, I need help, I think I have something big,’” she said.

Martin ran to help the fisherman. However, just before he cut the man’s line, he snapped pictures of the shark as it swam away near a swimmer.

“We cut the line and the swimmer came right around (here) and they kind of met, but he was oblivious. He just kept swimming around,” said Martin.

Martin said the bay is a nursery for great whites, but there has never once been an attack.

“More people step on stingrays at the beach,” he said.

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This is the second great white shark sighting in just two months.