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How Heavy Is A Goliath Grouper

author
David Lawrence
• Tuesday, 13 October, 2020
• 7 min read

Scientific classification Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Actinopterygii Order: Performed Family: Serranidae Subfamily: Epinephrine Genus: Epimetheus Species: Binomial name Epimetheus Tamara Synonyms Promiscuous Tamara (Lichtenstein, 1822) Serra nus Tamara Lichtenstein, 1822 Serra nus Menelik Valentines, 1828 Serra nus gales J.P. Müller & Trochee, 1848 Serra nus guava Play, 1860 Promiscuous one Ehrenberg, 1915 Promiscuous ditto Roux & Collision, 1954 The Atlantic goliathgrouper 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).

grouper goliath giant fish shark endangered massive species dangerous most diver jewfish key largo atlantic snatches ocean
(Source: abcnews.go.com)

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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 goliathgrouper 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.

goliath metal grouper
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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 goliathgrouper 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. Besides shelter, tidal pools provide E. Tamara with plenty of prey such as lobster and porcelain crab.

The Atlantic goliathgrouper has historically been referred to as the “Jewish”. 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.

grouper goliath
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In 2001, the American Fisheries Society stopped using the term because of complaints that it was culturally insensitive. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

^ 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. Its range includes the Gulf of Mexico and Florida Keys in the United States, the Bahamas, most of the Caribbean, and most of the Brazilian coast.

Scientists from our Southeast Fisheries Science Center are working to understand the changes that have occurred in coral reef ecosystems following the loss of top predators, such as groupers. The once common Nassau grouper (Epimetheus stratus) and goliathgrouper (E. Tamara) have been so depleted that they are under complete protection from the South Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean.

grouper goliath shark eats heavy shocked fishermen front
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From 1997-2005, our researchers collaborated with Florida State University's Institute for Fishery Resource Ecology (Dr. Chris Koenig and Dr. Felicia Coleman) to monitor the status and recovery of goliathgrouper. This goliathgrouper research program investigated juvenile and adult Jewish abundance, distribution and migration patterns; their age and growth; and their habitat utilization.

With the help of Don Maria we have tagged over 1,000 adult Jewish and have observed aggregations of goliathgrouper in both the Gulf of Mexico and more recently, the South Atlantic. Posters created by the Center of Marine Conservation help disseminate information about our project and its requirements, highlighting our tagging study and the morphology of goliathgrouper.

Given that these groupers were afforded protected status, researchers worked to utilize and develop novel non-lethal techniques to procure and analyze biological samples for life history information. Researchers have also determined that soft dorsal rays hold promise for aging older fish (Marie et al., 2008).

These casualties, resulting from red tide, gave our biologists a unique opportunity to collect a multitude of biological samples, without having to sacrifice healthy animals. From these decomposing carcasses, biologists were able to record length for use in an age/length relationship, and were able to extract monoliths and remove dorsal spines and rays for comparison of hard parts in age and growth analysis.

The sampling trip gave these biologists an opportunity to educate the curious beach goers about red tide and goliathgrouper (a few of which had been misidentified as baby manatees). Attempts to evaluate the data needed to assess the status of these depleted stocks and develop rebuilding plans present unique challenges.

grouper goliath shark bite sun eating sentinel eats
(Source: www.sun-sentinel.com)

In 2010, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and NOAA Fisheries convened a benchmark goliathgrouper assessment for the continental U.S. population. This project would not have been possible without ongoing collaboration with researchers from Florida State University, Everglades National Park, and the recreational fishing and SCUBA diving communities.

Epimetheus Tamara may be a widespread, slow growing, and aggregating species that has undergone vital population reduction over the past three generations (40.5 years) calculable to be a minimum of 80th based on landings information and underwater visual censuses. Despite clear and promising signs of recovery in us waters following the 1990 moratorium, the will increase in numbers noted area unit young and juvenile fish (the species takes five to six years to become sexually mature).

The goliathgrouper occurs within the western Atlantic Ocean from Florida south to Brazil, including the Gulf of Mexico and also the Caribbean Sea. This marine fish inhabits shallow, inshore waters with mud, rock or coral bottoms and is infrequently found below depths of 46 meters.

It’s territorial close to areas of refuge like caves, wrecks, and ledges, displaying an open mouth and quivering body to intruders. Young Atlantic goliathgrouper could sleep in salt estuaries, oyster beds, canals, and mangrove swamps, which is unusual behavior among groupers.

Scientific Name: Epimetheus Tamara Lifespan: up to 37 years Origin: Us Common Names : goliathgrouper, Jewish, black bass, one grouper, giant sea bass, grouper, hamlet, southern Jewish, and spotted Jewish Size : 98 inches (248 cm) PH: 7 – 8 Temperature : N/A Water Hardness : N/A Fish type: N/A Aquarium Size :N/A Tank Mates : N/A Gender : These teams occur at consistent sites like wrecks, rock ledges and isolated patch reefs during July, August and September.

grouper goliath swimming super bonaire esso florida scad reef jupiter rests artificial pair bottom near while round goliaths overhead swim
(Source: www.hakaimagazine.com)

Studies have shown fish could move up to 62 miles (100 km) from inshore reefs to these spawning sites. In southwest Florida, plausible entreaty behavior has been observed during the complete moons in August and September.

Occurring in shallow, inshore waters to depths of 150 feet (46 m), the Epimetheus Tamara prefers areas of rock, coral, and mud bottoms. It’s a classic apex predator, large, rare and solely some people occur on any given reef unit.

As with other fish, the Atlantic goliathgrouper is the host of several species of parasites, including the diplectanid monogenean Pseudorhabdosynochus Americans on its gills. Calico crabs frame the bulk of their diet, with alternative invertebrate species and fish filling within the rest.

Goliath grouper feed mostly on crustaceans (in particular spiny lobsters, shrimps and crabs), fishes (including stingrays and parrot fishes), octopus, and young ocean turtles. A 16-year-old girl who went deep-sea fishing recently for only her second time, reeled up an estimated 583-pound goliathgrouper, which dwarfs the women’s world record for the species.

“I was, like, in shock pretty much,” Reagan Werner told the Trinities Pioneer Press on Saturday. Werner, who is from Farmington, Minn., was fishing May 31 near Marco Island off Florida with her brother, mother, and stepfather.

grouper goliath swimming super cecilia aggregation spawning hover ana bow annual near during
(Source: www.hakaimagazine.com)

“These things have amazing power,” Paul Hartman, Werner’s stepfather, told the Pioneer Press. According to the International Game Fish Assn., the heaviest goliathgrouper caught by a woman weighed 366 pounds.

That fish, caught by Betsy Walker off Panama in 1965, is the women’s world record for 80-pound-test line. Thanks to the longstanding harvesting ban, the population is growing and larger fish are again being encountered by scuba divers and catch-and-release anglers.

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Sources
1 en.wikipedia.org - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlantic_goliath_grouper
2 www.floridamuseum.ufl.edu - https://www.floridamuseum.ufl.edu/discover-fish/species-profiles/epinephelus-itajara/
3 myfwc.com - https://myfwc.com/fishing/saltwater/recreational/goliath/