Goliath Grouper
Goliath Grouper Fishing Charters Clearwater, FL

 The biggest and baddest of the grouper species. In the Clearwater area fish caught between 100 - 400 lbs is fairly common. The best part about these monster grouper is the close proximity to shore in which they live. In the past 10 years the Clearwater area and entire gulf for that matter has seen the goliath grouper population explode. This is a direct result of conservation methods imposed by the FWC.
These fish are a federally protected species, and harvest is strictly forbidden. Due to the sheer size of these 100 pound plus grouper, even pulling them out of the water is not advised, by doing so will crush their skeletal system often killing them, which is considered harvesting.
Here's the FWC fact sheet for Goliath Grouper.
When we target them on a charter, we use large circle hooks to ensure a safe release. Armed with top of the line Fin Nor 2-speed 30W and 130lb class rod guarantees you have a solid chance of landing one of these giants! Usually we use large dead fish, such as Bonita, mackerel or any other oily species to entice these brutes off the wreck or reef. By doing so allows our anglers a little head start in the fight. Very heavy tackle is deployed for this type of fishing, and is not for the faint of heart. When a 200 lb monster sucks the bait in, it's everything the angler can do to stay in the boat!
The fight is intense at first, but gets easir as the fish loses sight of the wreck. After getting them boatside, pictures are taken, and the hooks quickly removed, all while the fish is still in the water.