Humans should be way more afraid of the ocean. Would you close your eyes and laze around in a lion-infested plain, just kind of hoping they won’t eat you today? No. And yet there are entire industries devoted to lollygagging about in the ocean, where all manner of giant beasts lurk mere leagues away—like the 300-pound Warsaw grouper two Florida fishermen snagged last month.
Professional fisherman Joshua Jorgensen caught the monstrous fish in January after a three-year effort to find one, Canada’s Global News reported this week. Jorgensen and his boat captain, Jason Boyll, hooked the grouper near a coral reef in the Gulf of Mexico, at which point it took four grown men to lift the thing over the edge of the boat. Jorgensen also shared footage of the super grouper catch on his YouTube fishing channel.
The grouper measured about seven feet long feet with sharp spines of up to two feet long running along its back. In the video, you see the fishermen haul the nearly 300-pound fish off the boat with a tractor when they return to shore. And yes, you can eat Warsaw grouper, which is said to taste just like any other grouper. However, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute has previously cautioned against specifically hunting them. “FWC does not encourage the targeting of Warsaw grouper since the status of the population in the Gulf is unknown,” the agency said in a Facebook post.
While the Warsaw grouper are thought to be exceedingly rare, they’re actually not the largest member of the grouper troop. The Goliath grouper, also located in the Atlantic Ocean, can weigh as much as 800 pounds. They’re just out there. Swimming around. Being enormous. But sure, hop in for a refreshing dip. I’m sure they’re not… hungry.