Gag Grouper (Mycteroperca microlepis) is a highly prized catch in the Florida Keys. They are most common in the Gulf of Mexico. However, they are not uncommon in shallow water grass bottom right out to 200 plus feet of water where they may be found frequenting ledges, reefs, and wrecks. Gags, as they are referred to, are one of the most regulated species of grouper in local waters. Far too regulated to go into in this limited space.
They range in size up to 60 or more pounds where they are referred “Copper Bellies”, a misnomer as the bellies of the larger fish is actually more of a black. The Gag is an aggressive striker and a vicious fighter. They take artificial’s readily and will head for structure at the first sign of trouble. If you are fishing with a jig and the fish comes off, free spool your line for a count to 5 seconds and then strike again. You will almost always have another strike on the drop.
The Gag Grouper is one of the best eating of the grouper family. Recipes for cooking Gag Grouper as well as other types of fish can be found on our Weekly Recipes page.
Gag Grouper Photo Gallery
Gag Grouper Fishing Locations
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