30kg monster coral reef fish caught up north

Thursday 11 March 2021 | Written by Melina Etches | Published in National, Outer Islands

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30kg monster coral reef fish caught up north
21031008. PHOTO: JEANMARIE WILLIAMS

Manihiki resident catches huge fish by handline.

JeanMarie Williams couldn't help sporting a big grin while holding a 30kg humphead wrasse caught by his son.

The fish, locally known as maratea, was caught last week in Tauhunu on the island of Manihiki.

“It was heavy and I could barely lift it,” he said.

The monster coral reef fish was caught by son Gabral Williams at the Avanui wharf, hooked using a handline with octopus meat as bait.

The species is one of the largest reef fishes in the world and is the largest member of the wrasse family.

The iconic fish is in serious decline worldwide, according to conservationists.