Florida firefighter snags HUGE 409-pound grouper in ‘last’ tournament

ST. PETERSBURG, FL (WFLA) – They are calling it a record-setting catch – a 409-pound Warsaw Grouper caught off St. Pete Beach this weekend.

James Taylor, a Bradenton firefighter, dock master and diver, speared the fish at a depth of 250 feet while 85 miles offshore during the St. Pete Open spearfishing tournament on Saturday, his wife Michelle told News Channel 8.

It took six men to drag it onto the stage to pose for photos and get it weighed.

The huge grouper didn’t count for the tournament but Team Trident did win first and second place for Hog fish and fourth and fifth place for grouper.

James couldn’t be more thrilled since this is his last tournament before becoming a father. He and Michelle are expecting a girl in October. “He sure did make it an epic one,” Michelle said.

The fish was filleted and will be shared with friends and family.

They are now waiting to hear from the International Underwater Spearfishing Association (IUSA) to confirm the world record and will also be applying to Guinness World Records.


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