Scuba diving, snorkeling and fishing are a significant part of the tourism business in our area. But now there may be a change coming to some of the biggest fish.
PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. - The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has its eyes on the goliath grouper.
In the 1990s, their numbers were declining. In response people were allowed to only catch and release the grouper, but now their numbers are back up.
The FWC wants the public to weigh in on whether the goliath grouper should be hunted.
Scuba Diver Jeff Thomas said, "Yes, I would be limited to open if they wanted to do like a limited, but really regulate though.I really like to see them."
Scuba Adventures owner Jim Abernathy says the goliath grouper should not be hunted because there will be fewer of them in the ocean, and that could affect tourism.
"Our business during the months from now until the end of September are almost triple because of the goliath grouper, it's a sight to behold," said Abernathy.
He also warns the goliath grouper could be high in mercury making them dangerous to those who want them for food.
"Our own health guides to Florida say whenever possible avoid eating anything with mercury."
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