Goliath Fish Kayak - A 552-pound fish called a goliath grouper was captured by a Florida man who was paddling in his kayak. Jon Black of the Crazy Lure Tackle shop in Cape Coral was in Sanibel, Fla., when he reeled in the goliath, which measured 83 inches long and more than 73 inches in girth, according to New York Daily News.
Grouper experts said it could be “the largest bottom fish ever [caught] from a kayak.” Black screamed with excitement as he wrangled the 552-pound beast, which broke his rod.
Despite breaking his rod in the process, Black managed to haul in the massive catch. It is quite unbelievable due to the fact it was so large that he could barely bring it into his kayak.
The goliath fish kayak, a 552-pound fish known as a goliath, was caught on a custom Barrett rod, an Avett 50w reel for big game, straight cable line and leader with a 18/0 circle hook. Black was using canal tuna as bait when he felt that fateful tug.
Atlantic Goliath Groupers can measure up to 9 feet and weigh up to 900 pounds. There are several videos of these fish pulling people out of boats and you can see the relief — and exhaustion — on the face of anyone who has reeled a goliath onto the boat.
“We heard screaming and looked near the dock to see this man trying to reel in a fish,” Chris Folsom said. “We ran out on the dock and could see the grouper near the surface of the water. It was massive. We thought it was going to tip the kayak.”
Several people described the catch as a fight because the 552 pound monster snapped the rod in half. Even with a broken rod by the grouper, Black still yelled and grabbed whatever was left of the rod to bring it into his kayak.
The goliath fish kayak, a 552-pound fish, was measured and then released, as is required by law since the goliath grouper is a protected species.
The goliath measured 83 inches long with a 73-inch girth. Using those measurements, the goliath grouper’s weight was estimated at a cool 552 pounds. Experts say that while no official kayak fishing records are kept, Black’s goliath is almost certainly a record kayak catch.
The all-tackle world record for the species is 680 pounds, caught off Florida way back in 1961, before they became protected. It is a state law that groupers must be sent back to the waters after they are caught.
The story was featured on Wednesday morning’s NBC’s “Today” show. Black can be heard screaming “that’s a big boy” as he reeled in the 552-pound goliath fish before the grouper made it in his kayak.