This massive hogfish is/was on private property and videoed by Rick Gage and Jason Pepper. It had managed to survive for many years with zero human interaction – most likely over a decade following Hurricane Wilma.
Unfortunately, Rick believes the fish was killed by a poacher shortly after this video was taken. He truly hopes it wasn’t, but he hasn’t seen it in over a month since the release of the video.
Gage was impressed by the resolve of this fish, “It grew up on it’s own in an old rock pit. It’s tough, as it survived on whatever it could find to eat, and thrived.”
Rick believes this hogfish should open a new discussion: Aquaculture. “Why we don’t have growing our own fish? We know that with this fish was growing on its own in an old rock quarry pit. There is NO reason that groups like NOAA, FWC, and other Government Agencies can’t organize massive grow-out facilities all over the US coastlines to start growing fingerlings size fish of every kind, both edible, and ornamental, which swim in our waters and releasing them at the size of about an inch to boost the natural stocks of depleted.”
He continued, “If the federal government can justify spending $120+ Million dollars on repairing only 2 of the 40+ Flagler Railroad bridges in the Florida Keys – bridges which will only be used by a handful of people a year. why can’t they justify spending that same type of money to insure a healthy marine fish stock for the future of this country?”