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February 20, 2012

IGFA: February Hot Catches

Fishing in the Milwaukee Harbour on Dec. 16, 2011, in his home state of Wisconsin, USA, angler Eric Haataja landed a brown trout (Salmo trutta) while casting a skirted jig. After a tough 10 minute fight, Eric boated the brownie to measure and photograph, before releasing it alive. Measuring 97 cm, Haataja’s fish qualifies for the potential new All-Tackle Length record, as the existing record stands at 64 cm.

Last December, Aussie angler Nicholas Hamilton-Smith traveled south to the neighboring country of New Zealand to do some offshore fishing out of the infamous Whakatane. While vertical jigging on Dec. 4, 2011, Hamilton-Smith hooked into a brute of a southern yellowtail (Seriola lalandi) that measured 131 cm after a tough 20 minute fight. By releasing the fish alive after the proper measuring and documentation on IGFA’s Official Measuring Device, Hamilton-Smith qualifies for the potential new All-Tackle Length record – currently standing at 112 cm.

Barramundi maestro Mark Hope, of Yungaburra, Australia, has pulled another potential record barra from Australia’s Lake Tinaroo. Fishing from his kayak on Jan. 7, 2012, Hope hooked into this 28.3 kg (62 lb 6 oz) fish that took the Z Man Swimmer he was trolling. After a 15 minute fight, he had the fish subdued and was on the way to the scales with this potential 6 kg (12 lb) line class record fish. The current IGFA record is 27.1 kg (59 lb 11 oz).

Angler Christopher J. Hudson, of Rockledge, Florida, USA, was bottom fishing in the Bahamas with friend and captain Scott Lehrmann on Jan. 9, 2012, when he landed a red grouper (Epinephelus morio) that qualifies for the men’s 08 kg (16 lb) line class record. The 10.21 kg (22 lb 8 oz) grouper ate a Guppy Bucktail Jig, and took Hudson only 5 minutes to pull from the bottom.  The current IGFA record is 8.84 kg (19 lb 8 oz).

Australian native Benchawan Thiansungnoen has been spending time in Thailand racking up records on some unique freshwater species. One of her most recent catches is a 13.35 kg (29 lb 13 oz) rohu (Labeo rohita) that she caught while fishing the Khao Laem Dam on January 6, 2012. Thiansungnoen’s fish ate a lump of bread mix she was soaking, and after a quick 5 minute fight, the rohu was subdued. After snapping a few photos and getting the necessary measurements, Thiansungnoen released this new potential All-Tackle record fish alive. The existing IGFA record stands at 12.5 kg (27 lb 8 oz).

Kiwi angler Scott Tindale traveled from his home in Auckland to New Zealand’s Behinve Island in early December to target a variety of bottom species. Casting a bucktail sea habit fly on Dec. 9, 2011, he landed this gorgeous snapper (squirefish) (Pagrus auratus) that weighed in at 4.75 kg (10 lb 7 oz). Tindale needed 25 minutes to land his potential men’s 03 kg (6 lb) tippet class record, which currently stands at 1.27 kg (2 lb 12 oz).  

The rich fishing grounds of Golfito, Costa Rica have produced another potential record for angler Roberta G. Arostegui and her captain, IGFA Lifetime Achiever Bobby McGuinness. Fishing a live pilchard dangerously close to the jagged shoreline, Arostegui needed 20 minutes to land this impressive Pacific snook (Centropomus spp.) on Jan. 4, 2012. Before being released alive, the fish weighed in at 4.08 kg (9 lb), qualifying Arostegui for the new women’s 24 kg (50 lb) line class record. The current IGFA record is 2.04 kg (4 lb 8 oz).

When angler Martin Larsson and guide Maddalena Martinengo decided to troll a skirted ballyhoo while fishing off their native coast of Tanzania on Nov. 30, 2011, hooking into a giant trevally (Caranx ignobilis) was certainly possible, but not very probable. However, 35 minutes after his Shimano Tiagra started singing, Larsson pulled up an enormous GT. Weighing in at 56.6 kg (124 lb 12 oz), his amazing catch qualifies for the potential men’s 24 kg (50 lb) line class record, which currently stands at 54.1 kg (119 lb 4 oz). 

Bangkok native Gerhard Posch traveled to Thailand’s Palm Tree Lagoon to target some of the unique freshwater species found there. While soaking a bread mix on Dec. 23, 2011, Posch hooked into a massive catla (Catla catla) that took him 15 minutes to land. Before the fish was released alive, it weighed in at 18.9 kg (41 lb 10 oz) – enough to qualify Gerhard for the potential new All-Tackle record, which currently stands at 15.17 kg (33 lb 7 oz).

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