On August 26, 2022, angler Matthew Marovich had no idea he’d catch two fish on the same day that would break state records. But he did. And recently on Dec. 29, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) approved his pair of catches as official state records for the species.
On flat calm August water with clear skies off Sarasota in Southwest Florida, Marovich headed offshore and the fish were cooperative. He boated a huge red porgy and a giant blueline tilefish.
“Both fish were unexpected catches,” Marovich told the FWC. “I thought I had a queen snapper when I pulled up the biggest red porgy I’d ever seen.
“The blueline tilefish felt like a grouper. We were grouper fishing and I was using the slow pitch jig and thought maybe a good sized scamp grouper or a yellowedge (grouper) was on the other end. I also knew there were snowy grouper in that area. Tilefish is one of my favorites to eat so it was exciting to see such a nice blueline come to the surface.”
Marovich’s red porgy weighed 5.56-pounds, beating the previous Florida record of 4.8 pounds set in 2019. His blueline tilefish weighed10.55-pounds. It tops the previous state record fish weighing 5.4-pounds set in 2021.
The IGFA world record red porgy is a beast of fish, that weighed 17 pounds, caught in 1997 in Gibraltar from the Alboran Sea.
The All-Tackle IGFA word record blueline tilefish weighed a hefty 23-pounds, 4-ounces, caught off New Jersey in 2015.
FWC keeps records on 81 species of Florida fish, with two categories, one for fly-rod catches, a second for fish caught on standard angling gear.