IT WAS the catch David Rapley had dreamt of since he was old enough to hold a fishing rod - a 132cm barramundi caught in the Fitzroy River on a sunny afternoon.
The Gracemere man said the "once in a lifetime" fish, caught on a lure, had left him speechless when he reeled it in on the first day of barramundi season this month.
"I was absolutely stoked, I didn't even know what to say," he said. "The holy grail of barramundi is a 120cm fish, so to go 130cm plus is a big achievement."
The 33-year-old said he had been fishing since he was three years old and it had remained a massive part of his life since.
When asked why he enjoyed the sport so much, David could barely put it into words.
"When I am not at work I am on the water," he said.
"There is something pretty electrical about it.
"You can't describe the feeling you get when you lure fish."
David posted his prized catch on two Central Queensland fishing Facebook pages, and attracted well over 600 collective likes.
He knew it would catch the eye of the region's fishing enthusiasts, and was impressed with the attention it brought Darren Fall; the man who made the winning lure.
"I was hoping for that sort of reaction because it was caught on lure by a local lure maker at The Caves," David said.
"For that sort of thing to be caught on a locally hand-made lure is fantastic."
David said the barramundi was released after a quick photo op.
Closed seasons prevent people from fishing at certain times of the year to protect species at vulnerable times in their life cycle.
Throughout Queensland's east coast, a closed season applies to barramundi from midday November 1 to midday February 1