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article imageWatch Florida fisherman reel in 552-lb Atlantic goliath grouper

By JohnThomas Didymus     May 28, 2015 in Environment
Sanibel - A Florida fisherman, Jon Black, reeled in a 552-pound Atlantic goliath grouper fish from a Kayak while fishing in Sanibel, Fla., on 20 May. The catch is believed to be the biggest goliath grouper ever caught from a kayak.
According to NY Daily News, the video was recorded by Captain Ben Chancey for the fishing show "Chew On This." It has gone viral online with more than 1 million views after it was posted to YouTube on May 26, 2015.
Black, owner of Crazy Lure Bait & Tackle Shop in Cape Coral, Florida, can be seen in the video sitting in a kayak by a pier, struggling excitedly with the goliath grouper (Epinephelus itajara) and breaking his rod in the process.
He cried, "I broke the rod, oh, Jesus."
When he finally reeled in the goliath, he and Chancey cheered.
Black with his 552-lb Atlantic goliath grouper
Black with his 552-lb Atlantic goliath grouper
Facebook/Crazy Lure Bait & Tackle Shop
According to the IB Times, Black was armed with a custom Barrett rod, an Avett 50w reel, a straight cable line and leader with an 18/0 circle hook, and a canal tuna bait.
The reader would better appreciate the cause of Black’s excited screams and whoops with the information that goliath groupers have been known to swallow sharks whole. Sitting in a flimsy kayak while struggling to reel in a 552-lb monster goliath grouper after breaking your fishing rod is more dangerous than it looks in the video.
He told Chew On This, "I thought he was going to kill me."
Black shows off his 552-lb goliath grouper
Black shows off his 552-lb goliath grouper
Facebook/Crazy Lure Bait & Tackle Shop
The fish was measured at 83 inches long, more than 73 inches in girth, and the weight estimated at 552 pounds.
The fisherman had to return the fish to the water after measuring it because goliath groupers are protected. They are considered a critically endangered species by International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Black and Chancey believe that the catch set a record for the largest bottom fish ever caught from a kayak.
However, Grind TV’s David Strege notes that there are no official world records for kayak fishing, although a number of websites attempt to keep records on the subject. Strege writes that none of the sources he was familiar with has goliath groupers listed.
552-lb Atlantic goliath grouper
552-lb Atlantic goliath grouper
Facebook/Crazy Lure Bait & Tackle Shop
However, the world hook-and-line record for the goliath grouper is 681 pounds caught off Fernandina Beach, Florida, in May 1961. But it is known that Atlantic goliath groupers can measure up to 8.2 feet and weigh as much as 800 lb.
The Atlantic goliath grouper, a saltwater fish found in shallow tropical waters in Florida, the Bahamas, the Caribbean and the Brazilian coast, became protected in the U.S. in 1990 and in the Caribbean in 1993.
Despite his personal feat, Black warned on his Facebook page about attempting to catch a large fish like the goliath grouper from a Kayak, saying that it could be dangerous.
More about Grouper, Kayak, Atlantic goliath grouper, golliath grouper, Jon Black
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