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April 17, 2011

IGFA: Hot Record Catches of April

This month’s hottest potential records have reached IGFA headquarters from as far afield as Brazil, New Zealand, the Cayman Islands, and a slam conquest that spanned from Africa to Hawaii to Brazil – as well as five great catches from Florida and Ohio. Check out these latest angling accomplishments!

Smallfry angler Laurel David of Hollywood, Florida, USA, has had plenty of fishing experience in her short life, growing up with father and fishing guide Capt. Jimmy David. That experience paid off on February 23, 2011 when Laurel pitched a live pinfish to a 21.77 kg (48 lb 0 oz) cobia (Rachycentron canadum) while fishing off Key Biscayne, Florida, USA. Laurel needed 30 minutes to land her potential Female Smallfry record, which easily outweighs the current IGFA record of 17.03 kg (37 lb 9oz).

Veteran record angler Dr. Gilberto Fernandes was fishing his native Rio Amazonas, Brazil on February 13, 2011 when he hooked into a huge 22 kg (48 lb 8 oz) tiger sorubim (Pseudoplatystoma tigrinum). Dr. Gilberto’s fish would replace his current All-Tackle record of 45 lb 10 oz, and would also qualify him for the 06 kg (12 lb) line class record. Fernandes needed 16 minutes to land the potential record fish after it hit the live bait he was soaking.

Kiwi angler Bradley Tong of Mount Maunganui, New Zealand was speed jigging off Mayor Island, New Zealand with guide Mark Armistead on February 23, 2011, when Bradley hooked into a gorgeous southern yellowtail (Seriola laland). With their Official IGFA Measuring Device handy, angler and guide were able to land, document and cleanly release this 99 cm yellowtail to qualify for the All-Tackle Length record for the species. Tong was using a River 2 – Sea Knife jig, and only needed six minutes to boat his potential record fish. The current IGFA record is vacant.

Three days before Bradley Tong landed his potential All-Tackle Length yellowtail, fellow Kiwi and veteran light-tackle billfish angler Eryn Jacobsen was at it again. Fishing with Captain John Batterton on the Hookin’ Bull off North Cape, New Zealand on February 20, 2011, Jacobsen hooked into a monster 181.8 kg (400 lb 12 oz) Pacific blue marlin (Makaira nigricans) on just 6 kg (12 lb) gear! Five grueling hours after the marlin hit the trolled dead skipjack, Jacobsen and the crew of the Hookin’ Bull had boated this potential women’s 06 kg (12 lb) record Pacific blue marlin. Jacobsen’s potential record more than doubles the current record of 85.95 kg (189 lb 8 oz).

The current All-Tackle record holder for escolar (Lepidocybium flavobrunneum), Charles F. Ebanks of Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, was apparently not happy with his current record of 68.21 kg (150 lb 6 oz). Fishing with Emil Terry, Ebanks landed an enormous escolar on December 15, 2010 while fishing off Grand Cayman. The 72.89 kg (160 lb 11 oz) fish surpasses Ebanks’ current record, qualifying him for the potential new All-Tackle record. The escolar was landed 25 minutes after taking the angler’s rigged squid.

Fly angler Dr. J.A. Llera, of Miami Lakes, Florida, USA, spent the weekend of March 26, 2011 in Key Largo, Florida, USA where he was able to land and release a bonefish (Albula spp.) to qualify for the first All-Tackle Length record for the species. Llera’s fish measured 62 cm and took the angler’s well presented shrimp fly before the 15 minute drag-screaming battle ensued.

Angler, lure manufacturer and IGFA Representative Patrick Sebile, of Fort Pierce, Florida, USA, put his lures and angling skills to the test on a recent trip to Chiriqui, Panama. Of the numerous All-Tackle Length records that resulted from the trip, one of the most impressive was an 88 cm Pacific cubera snapper (Lutjanus novemfasciatus) that he caught on February 11, 2011, fishing with local guide Porfirio Pufiro. Sebile needed 10 minutes to land the toothy snapper after it crashed on the Sebile Magic Swimmer he was casting. As is the case with every All-Tackle Length record, the fish was released alive after being photographed and measured.

Angler Michael Romano of Hudson, Ohio, USA, made a trip south to Marco Island, Florida, USA to escape the cold north and try his hand at some All-Tackle Length records on fly. Romano was not disappointed; he landed a quality Atlantic snook (Centropomus spp.) while casting a white bucktail fly from the dock on March 21, 2011. Romano’s snook measured 70 cm and took him five minutes to land. This catch is a great example of how the All-Tackle Length program allows anglers to target fish for records even though the species may be out of season or a specific size limit.

Angler Brett Warrick of Westerville, Ohio, USA, landed a 4.68 kg (10 lb 5 oz) muskellunge (Esox masquinongy) on March 29, 2011 while fly fishing the Alum Creek Spillway, Ohio, USA to qualify for the currently vacant 01 kg (2 lb) tippet class record for the toothy muskellunge. Warrick’s fish took a well-presented black fly and fought for 10 mintues before hitting the scales for an official weight.

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