Gold Coast resident Cherekee Hill fought for over an hour-and-a-half to land a 400.5kg black marlin at Linden Bank on the outer reef off Port Douglas.
On returning to Port Douglas Marina yesterday morning, the 18 metre Cairns-based fishing vessel Mai Tai was greeted by dozens of onlookers who flocked to the boardwalk to catch a glimpse of the huge fish.
According to a Maitai crewman the marlin died 100m below the surface of the water.
While its sheer size impressed, many expressed a sense of sadness and questioned the practice of big game fishing.
"It's such as shame," said Paul, a tourist from Melbourne who was lured to take a closer look. "A few hours ago it was swimming in the ocean," he said.
Lisa Reddrop questioned how fishing of this nature differed from whaling, a practice widely condemned by Australians.
"It was such a big, beautiful creature," she said. "All that for five minutes of fame."
But according to Port Douglas Marlin Challenge tournament organiser, Lynton Heffer, big game fishing industry standards mean the majority of fish are being released back into the water in good health.
"There is no comparison (to whaling)," he said.
"The guys (big game fishers) are out there living and breathing it and can see what's going on. They're not out there to go and kill these fish. Sure they go out there and catch them, but the game fishing industry is the only one clued in to the sort of populations are out there.
And according to Mr Heffer there has been the biggest juvenile black marlin season since 1995.
"We've had a black marlin population explosion...People can't remember a season like that since the mid-90s."
What are your thoughts on big game fishing? Tell us below.
Massive marlin landed