The video, shot by his wife using a GoPro 3, shows the hefty fish as he nips at the man's flipper, tearing it off, and then goes straight for his catch with its powerful jaw. But, even if the diver wasn't familiar with that specific size of this type of fish, Goliath groupers have been known to roam western Atlantic waters near Florida.
# of Dives: 200 – 499 Location: Dark side of the moon I've never dived with a Grouper but it seems commercial divers are terrified by them! # of Dives: 500 – 999 Location: Metro New York As far as I know groupers are only dangerous if you eat them.
Large groupers in the Caribbean are linked to increased risk of Cautery poisoning. In my limited experience the most aggressive fishes I've run into are spade fish, Bermuda chubby and of course damsel fishes, which are more annoying than dangerous.
Fifteen hundred years ago everybody knew the Earth was the center of the universe. # of Dives: 200 – 499 Location: Cape Cod, MA I agree that if you don't mes with them, they won't mess with you.
The Atlantic Goliath grouper or Tamara (Epimetheus Tamara), also known as the Jewish, is a large saltwater fish of the grouper family found primarily in shallow tropical waters among coral and artificial reefs at depths from 5 to 50 m (16 to 164 ft). Its range includes the Florida Keys in the US, the Bahamas, most of the Caribbean and most of the Brazilian coast.
On some occasions, it is caught off the coasts of the US states of New England off Maine and Massachusetts. In the eastern Atlantic Ocean, it occurs from the Congo to Senegal.
Young Atlantic Goliath groupers may live in brackish estuaries, oyster beds, canals, and mangrove swamps, which is unusual behavior among groupers. They may reach extremely large sizes, growing to lengths up to 2.5 m (8.2 ft) and can weigh as much as 360 kg (790 lb).
The world record for a hook-and-line-captured specimen is 308.44 kg (680.0 lb), caught off Fernanda Beach, Florida, in 1961. Considered of fine food quality, Atlantic Goliath grouper were a highly sought-after quarry for fishermen.
It is a relatively easy prey for spear fishermen because of the grouper's inquisitive and generally fearless nature. They also tend to spawn in large aggregations, returning annually to the same locations.
Until a harvest ban was placed on the species, its population was in rapid decline. The fish is recognized as “vulnerable” globally and “endangered” in the Gulf of Mexico.
The species' population has been recovering since the ban; with the fish's slow growth rate, however, some time will be needed for populations to return to their previous levels. Goliath groupers are believed to be protogynous hermaphrodites, which refer to organisms that are born female and at some point in their lifespans change sex to male.
Males can be sexually mature at about 115 centimeters (45 in), and ages 4–6 years. In May 2015, the Atlantic Goliath grouper was successfully bred in captivity for the first time.
Tidal pools act as nurseries for juvenile E. Tamara. In tidal pools juvenile E.Tamara are able to utilize rocky crevices for shelter.
It may have referred to the fish's status as inferior leading it to be declared only suitable for Jews, or the flesh having a “clean” taste comparable to kosher food ; it has also been suggested that this name is simply a corruption of jaw fish or the Italian word for “bottom fish”, Giuseppe. In 2001, the American Fisheries Society stopped using the term because of complaints that it was culturally insensitive.
^ Lovato, Cleo nice Maria Cardozo; Soars, Bruno Clears; Begot, Tiago Octavio Buffalo; Montage, Luciano Coach de Assis (January 2016). “Tidal pools as habitat for juveniles of the Goliath grouper Epimetheus Tamara (Lichtenstein 1822) in the Amazonian coastal zone, Brazil”.
Risky, Delaney C.; Bakenhaster, Micah D.; Adams, Douglas H. (2015). “ Pseudorhabdosynochus species (Monogenoidea, Diplectanidae) parasitizing groupers (Serranidae, Epinephrine, Epinephrine) in the western Atlantic Ocean and adjacent waters, with descriptions of 13 new species”.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Epimetheus Tamara. That’s like a silver back gorilla that can swim, only with less hair and a severely diminished tree-swinging ability.
Large groupers in the Caribbean are linked to increased risk of Cautery poisoning. Otherwise, I've never heard of groupers attacking divers, despite over 500 dives all over the Caribbean.
I had an old Nikon V and was bending the SB 105 strobe arm to get it to go under the “ledge”. So not paying him any mind trying to get in for the perfect picture I had to take my tank off and drag it behind me.
By the time I was in position he was thumping fairly good now. Then I took the picture the flash fired ... then his thumping went to BBBBBBBBBBBBBBrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr, and he charged me and ran into the coral as I was far enough back, so he couldn't reach me.
Fabien Cousteau named the distinctive Atlantic Goliath grouper after famed ocean scientist Sylvia Earle when the curious fish and her larger companion repeatedly visited Cousteau during his expedition in the undersea laboratory Aquarius off-Key Largo in 2014. “As ocean icons, it seemed normal that two beautiful Goliath groupers we saw almost every day would be named after my grandfather and Sylvia,” Cousteau says.
The arguments may sound plausible on the docks, but do not add up in the science lab, says Chris Koenig, a retired University of Florida marine biologist who has studied Goliath for decades. “People make up all kinds of reasons why the fish must be destroyed,” Koenig says.
Koenig, whose fascination with Goliath groupers dates to his boyhood when the fish was considered worthless, and his wife, Florida State University scientist Felicia Coleman, posted a “fact or fiction” paper online to refute false claims and clarifying the groupers dining habits and biology. Koenig says the push to lift the ban on catching Goliath grouper has more to do with sport than anything else.
Among trophy fish caught in the Florida Keys, the Goliath grouper has long held special distinction. Goliath groupers, which live up to 40 years, can measure as much as eight feet in length.
“We don’t really know how low the population got right before the closure,” says Amanda Valley, the commission’s spokesperson. Valley adds the commission has no plans on the horizon to the reconsider grouper’s status.
Dan Maria, a commercial diver who used to hunt Goliath with a spear when they were plentiful, now thinks they are worth more alive than dead. The experience becomes even more exotic during mating season, when Goliath migrate north to cooler waters just off Palm Beach, Florida, and gather in groups of 50.
“Nowhere else in the world can you swim up to a fish that is the size of a small Volkswagen and pet it on the face and see about 30 of them around you,” he says. He's finalizing a new analysis of the behemoth, in which he lays out a plan for reopening the juvenile Goliath grouper to fishing on a limited, sustainable basis.