Florida fisherman catches massive 350-lb grouper

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A 350-pound Warsaw grouper caught off the coast of Florida is believed to be 50 years old, making it the oldest documented fish in a Florida wildlife research program. (Photo: Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Wildlife Research Institute)

FLORIDA (WWAY) — A Florida fisherman caught “the big one” off the southwest coast of the Sunshine State, hauling in a Warsaw grouper weighing an astounding 350 pounds.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission shared the catch on Facebook Friday.

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While it’s certainly a mega-catch, the haul is not a record as a previous Warsaw grouper caught off Florida weighed 450 pounds.

The grouper was caught in about 600 feet of water using a hook and line on December 29. The name of the fisherman was not released.

“Biologists from FWRI’s Age & Growth Lab estimated the age of this fish at 50 years old, making this the oldest sample collected for our ageing program,” the FWC said in its post. “Acquiring the otolith from this fish was extremely valuable as samples from larger and older fish are rare.”