Two huge sharks weighing over 500lbs have been caught off the Dorset coast.

The pair of porbeagle sharks - a relative of the deadly Great White - were caught by anglers Adam Carter and Matt Mizen about seven miles off Portland.

Adam's catch measured about 8ft long and weighed over 21 stones while Matt's specimen was thought to weigh over 14 stones.

Adam, a 41-year-old plasterer from Weymouth, said he was left feeling exhausted following a 1 hour 45 minute fight to reel in his monster shark.

At one stage the powerful predator dragged Adam's boat, the Kelsey Jane, over 200 yards before it tired.

Even after reeling it in the shark was far too big to lift on board so Adam brought it alongside to photograph and measure it before releasing it safe and well.

Along with blue sharks, porbeagles are the most common species of shark found in British waters.

Sightings and catches of them are thought to be on the increase due to a number of reasons.

Commercial fishing for them has been banned in European waters, resulting in a resurgence for the species.

And last year researchers from the University of Southampton said that more shark species could migrate north to UK waters as the oceans warm.

Adam, who also runs a fishing charter business part-time, said he had never known British waters to be so full of sharks.

He said: "Shark fishing is the best I have known it in terms of the number and sheer size of them.

"Now they are not being commercially fished for we are seeing more and more of them off Dorset."

Adam used mackerel as bait to catch his 300lbs specimen.

He said: "It took almost two hours to reel her in. She started off quite tame but I don't think she realised what was going on.

"Then after 10 minutes she started to play hard and we struggled to hold it. For for an hour and 45 minutes she was spinning the boat with runs over 200 metres.

"Eventually we got her to the boat and released the hook. She was huge. We estimated up to eight foot long and about 300 pounds.

"We don't lift the sharks on board as we want to make it less stressful for them."

Despite their association with the Great White, porbeagles are not considered to be a threat to humans with only three recorded non-fatal attacks before.

The porbeagle shark - Lamna nasus in Latin - is classed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as critically endangered in the north east Atlantic.

Adam's Kelsey Jane Fishing Charters is taking bookings for more shark trips in August on 07891 119864.