Trout is the fish of the month in the freshwater world! September brought world record applications for bull trout and Arctic char, as well as an application for the coveted Royal Trout Slam Club, to the International Game Fish Association. Check out these contenders as well as new zander and smallmouth bass challengers from Canada, Finland, Japan, and the USA in this month’s Hot Catches update of potential new world records.
Although an Atlantic halibut from Norway recently made headlines worldwide, the catch has not yet been received by the IGFA for world record consideration; however, a sizeable California halibut is now before the World Records committee for a potential 6 kg (12 lb) line class record. Read on for this catch, plus potential Pacific bluefin tuna, bluefish, and yellowmargin triggerfish world records from Baja, Christmas Island, and California and New Jersey in the United States – as well as a new Inshore Grand Slam with a tarpon, permit, and bonefish out of Cayo Cruz, Cuba!
Jim Sollecito of Syracuse, New York, USA, recently targeted trophy class Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) in areas of the northern Canadian wilderness so remote they could only be accessed by helicopter and air plane. On August 8th, while fishing Newfoundland’s Tasiuyak Lake, Sollecito landed a beautiful 7.94 kg (17 lb 8 oz) Arctic char while casting a muddler minnow in the crystal clear water. Nearly 20 minutes after hooking up, Sollecito finally landed a potential 6 kg (12 lb) tippet class record char that eclipses the existing record by 8 oz.
Finnish angler Jasmin Vataja landed a potential 1 kg (2 lb) line class record zander (Sander lucioperca) on July 19th while fishing with local guide Kari Hokkanen in Airisto, Finland. Vataja was trolling a Rapala Scatter Rap plug and skillfully played the fish for 22 minutes before bringing it boatside. Weighing in at 1.72 kg (3 lb 12 oz), Vataja’s zander exceeds the current record by two pounds.
While fishing Lake Inawashiro in his home waters of Japan on June 8th, Dr. Ichiro Nagai caught an impressive 2.55 kg (5 lb 9 oz) smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieu) while fly casting with guide Hiroyuki Motoyama. A well placed Iwa Minnow fly enticed the bite and 10 minutes later Nagai had the potential 4 kg (8 lb) tippet class record fish boated. After properly documenting the fish on a nearby shore, Nagai released the bass alive to grow even bigger. The current IGFA record is 2.38 kg (5 lb 4 oz).
IGFA Trustee Gary A. Carter of Duluth, Georgia, USA has achieved multiple world records on some of the ocean’s most challenging fish, but until recently Carter’s record fishing had been limited to saltwater species. However, while fishing outside of Fernie, Canada on August 18th, Carter landed a 6.8 kg (14 lb 15 oz) bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus) that could potentially earn him the new 4 kg (8 lb) line class record. Carter, an experienced light tackle angler, needed 15 minutes to land the trout after it took a white bucktail jig he was casting. After being properly documented and weighed, Carter released the fish back into Lodgepole Creek. The current IGFA record is 6.12 kg (13 lb 8 oz).
Trout Royal Slam
On August 15th, Michael Yannick became the newest member of the IGFA’s prestigious Trout Royal Slam Club by landing a golden trout while fishing California’s appropriately named Fish Creek. Yannick’s quest began on July 17, 2008 when he landed a rainbow trout while fishing in Alaska’s Kenai River. Shortly after that, Yannick landed his lake trout while fishing Lake George, New York. After a three year hiatus, Yannick traveled to Alberta, Canada where he picked up his cutthroat and bull trout in July of 2011. A resident of Pennsylvania, Yannick was able to catch his brown and brook trout in the waters of his home state in late 2011 and the spring of 2012. The IGFA congratulates Michael Yannick on his angling achievements and welcomes him to the Trout Royal Slam Club.
Angler Vick Sommers was fishing his home waters of Southern California, USA on July 30th when he landed a 24.15 kg (53 lb 4 oz) California halibut (Paralichthys californicus) while soaking squid on the bottom. Using light tackle, Sommers needed 30 minutes to subdue the potential men’s 6 kg (12 lb) line class record halibut. The current IGFA record stands at 23.81 kg (52 lb 8 oz).
Anglers fishing off the coasts of Southern California and Mexico’s Baja Peninsula have reported strong numbers of Pacific bluefin tuna (Thunnus orientalis) this season, a change from the past few years. While aboard a long range boat from Southern California, angler Colin R. Waters landed a potential men’s 10 kg (20 lb) tippet class record Pacific bluefin tuna while fishing off the Baja coast on August 1st. After coming tight on the 7.26 kg (16 lb 0 oz) tuna, Waters needed only 10 minutes to subdue his catch. The current IGFA record is vacant.
Angler Wade Boggs of Tampa, Florida landed a potential All-Tackle Length record bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix) on July 19th while fishing with Capt. Frank Crescitelli off Shrensbury Rocks, New Jersey. Boggs needed only eight minutes to subdue the 87 cm fish after it crushed the live bait he was fishing. Once boated, the fish was quickly measured and photographed before being released alive. The current IGFA record is 82 cm.
While visiting the beautiful and remote Christmas Island in the Pacific Ocean, Singaporean angler Kelvin Ng landed a potential All-Tackle record yellowmargin triggerfish (Pseudobalistes flavimarginatus) while fly fishing on August 8th. The beautiful triggerfish weighed in at 3.5 kg (7 lb 11 oz) after an intense five minute fight across the pristine flats, and was released alive after being properly documented. The current IGFA record is 2.75 kg (6 lb 1 oz).
Inshore Grand Slam
Italian angler Paolo Fornasari accomplished his third Inshore Grand Slam on April 28th while fishing the pristine inshore waters surrounding Cayo Cruz, Cuba. With local guide Nelson on the poling platform, Fornasari successfully landed an estimated 36.3 kg (80 lb) tarpon, a 7.7 kg (17 lb) permit and a 2 kg (4 lb) bonefish – all on fly rod! Congratulations Paolo, on a great achievement and another Inshore Grand Slam!
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