Felipe Prieto, Florida angler and fishing enthusiast, recently caught a butterfly peacock bass weighing 9.11 pounds and was granted a state record! The previous record from 1993 was 9.08 pounds.
Peacock bass, which are actually large cichlids, are native to South America. They were deposited in Southeast Florida during the 80s to reduce the number of undesirable exotic fish, such as tilapia. These predatory game fish are cherished by anglers because of their striking colors. Their aggressive temperament and powerful body make peacock bass one of the hardest fish to catch on light tackle.
In Florida, peacock bass are mostly found in the warmer waters of Miami and Broward. There has been a slight northward expansion due to mild winters, as well.