12-foot tiger shark reeled in at North Topsail Beach

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A large shark is caught and tagged on the NC coast. (WTVD)

Photos and videos of a massive tiger shark caught Wednesday by researchers fishing on North Topsail Beach have gone viral.

Photos and videos of the 12-foot shark were posted to Facebook and have been shared nearly 15,000 times in less than a day.

The photos and video were posted by Laura Harrell on her Facebook page.

Researchers reeled in the shark, which officially was measured at 11-feet, 7-inches, while fishing at North Topsail Beach.

Harrell, who posted the encounter between the group of researchers and the tiger shark on her Facebook page, told ABC News that they released the shark back into the ocean after taking a few pictures and tagging it.

Video shows people cutting fishing line from the shark's mouth and the researchers then dragged the shark back out into the water.

Harrell, a local resident, said the encounter is not very common.

"Last year I saw a guy fishing off the shore and he caught a 6-foot shark, which I thought was big," she said, adding that she has never seen one this big.

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