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Old 07-22-2010, 07:48 AM  
Radar Chief Radar Chief is offline
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New record catfish caught in Missouri



Florissant man catches record-setting catfish in Missouri

BY JOEL CURRIER> jcurrier@post-dispatch.com | Posted: Wednesday, July 21, 2010 12:25 am
ST. CHARLES COUNTY It was a dead night on the Missouri River. Hardly a nibble on the line for hours. So as storm clouds rolled in about 12:45 a.m. Tuesday, Greg Bernal and his girlfriend decided they'd head for shore after 15 more minutes.
Then, suddenly, came a pull on the line stronger than Bernal had ever felt.
"That rod just started screaming," said Bernal, 47, of Florissant. "I knew he was big. It raced out, I set the hook and there was no movement at all. I just kept the pressure on him and finally I could feel him thumping."
Bernal landed the 130-pound blue catfish that officials say is big enough for a world record held since May 2005 by Tim Pruitt of Alton. Pruitt caught a 124-pound blue catfish on the Mississippi River near Alton.
The Missouri record, until Tuesday, was a 103-pound catfish caught with a pole and line in 1991 on the Missouri River.
Bernal fought his big catch for 15 minutes and spent another 30 minutes with help from his girlfriend, Janet Momphard pulling it into their johnboat as rain pelted them and lightning flashed. The fish's teeth snagged Bernal's hands and drew blood.
Bernal and Momphard, 47, a nurse from St. Charles, said they used 40-pound test fishing line and Asian carp as bait.
"I am still numb," said Bernal, a lifelong fisherman. "That's the biggest fish I've ever seen."
Bernal's fish was at least 25 to 30 years old, officials said. It was 57 inches long and 45 inches in girth. That's one inch shorter but also one inch fatter than Pruitt's catch.
Bernal wouldn't reveal the exact location of his fishing spot, saying only it was near the Columbia Bottom Conservation Area.
Bernal's fish was weighed Tuesday morning at the Straatmann Feed Store in New Melle. Manager Jim Blair said he brought a portable scale out to the store's front porch, a spectacle that drew a crowd and caused a small-town traffic jam.
"It was total chaos," said Blair, 61. "Everybody was jumping for joy. People were getting out of their cars and taking pictures."
Bernal's catch will have to be certified before it becomes an official record.
Pruitt, 38, the outgoing record holder, had hoped to profit from catfish fame by selling DVDs about his catch on his website, www.timpruitt.net. But he says he lost more money in that venture than he cared to discuss and no longer offers catfish merchandise.
"It didn't work so good," Pruitt said. "Catfishermen don't like to spend too much."
Pruitt said he is happy for Bernal and isn't bothered that his five-year reign as catfish king is ending.
"Records are made to be broken," he said. "I've held it long enough. It's time to pass the torch."
Bernal, an unemployed land surveyor, says he won't eat the record-breaking fish, but plans to mount a reproduction in his home, next to a 79.12-pound catfish he caught in 1995. He hopes there's room for another someday.
"I'm going to go out there and catch a bigger one," Bernal said. "They're out there."


http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/m...7a4a78c22.html
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:58 AM   #2
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That will be one hell of a fish fry.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:58 AM   #3
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That will be one hell of a fish fry.
I bet that old and big, it probably wouldnt taste very well?
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Old 07-22-2010, 08:05 AM   #4
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I bet that old and big, it probably wouldnt taste very well?
It probably could be cleaned and eaten but something that big should be studied, not consumed.
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Old 07-22-2010, 08:28 AM   #5
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It probably could be cleaned and eaten but something that big should be studied, not consumed.
Try telling that to my wife.
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Old 07-22-2010, 08:29 AM   #6
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It probably could be cleaned and eaten but something that big should be studied, not consumed.
Good point. I was surprised he got it to the boat in only 15 minutes. What a freaking rush that would be.
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Old 07-22-2010, 08:33 AM   #7
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Good point. I was surprised he got it to the boat in only 15 minutes. What a freaking rush that would be.
Yeah seriously...he was only using 40 lb line, so that's a pretty quick time to get that in...especially in river current. Although, he was in a jon boat so he probably chased the fish with the boat to make it quicker, but still.
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Old 07-22-2010, 08:34 AM   #8
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Those monsters are swimming around our feet every time we take a swim in the lake in Ark/Missou/Okla.


That is some scary shit!
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Old 07-22-2010, 08:58 AM   #9
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Those monsters are swimming around our feet every time we take a swim in the lake in Ark/Missou/Okla.


That is some scary shit!
Not only that but the guys that noodle can have that shit. Imagine sticking your hand in that things mouth. Itd probably crush your hand and take off with it.
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Old 07-22-2010, 08:59 AM   #10
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Thank god he killed it. We don't need an amazing fish like that alive in an aquarium for all to see and enjoy anyways...



I'm kidding BTW. i would have liked to see that fish stay alive, even if it's in an aquarium or even released. I would like to know if anyone could determine what made that fish get so damn huge. (other than the obvious lots of food, stress free area to live in stuff) genetics? raw sewage? nuclear waste?

Pretty cool though.
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Old 07-22-2010, 09:04 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Radar Chief View Post
Not only that but the guys that noodle can have that shit. Imagine sticking your hand in that things mouth. Itd probably crush your hand and take off with it.
no doubt you'd need a couple buddies to help pull you back out.
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Old 07-22-2010, 09:05 AM   #12
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Thank god he killed it. We don't need an amazing fish like that alive in an aquarium for all to see and enjoy anyways...



I'm kidding BTW. i would have liked to see that fish stay alive, even if it's in an aquarium or even released. I would like to know if anyone could determine what made that fish get so damn huge. (other than the obvious lots of food, stress free area to live in stuff) genetics? raw sewage? nuclear waste?

Pretty cool though.
Here in Texas they have a program called ShareLunker in which people that catch bass over 13 lbs donate it (alive) to the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center. They study the fish and its genetics for use in engineering bass with larger growth potential.

http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/visitorcenters/tffc/sharelunker/
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Old 07-22-2010, 09:08 AM   #13
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Here in Texas they have a program called ShareLunker in which people that catch bass over 13 lbs donate it (alive) to the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center. They study the fish and its genetics for use in engineering bass with larger growth potential.

http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/visitorcenters/tffc/sharelunker/
Cool. That's along the lines of what i was thinking.

BTW, that's a huge bass.
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Old 07-22-2010, 09:28 AM   #14
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Thank god he killed it. We don't need an amazing fish like that alive in an aquarium for all to see and enjoy anyways...



I'm kidding BTW. i would have liked to see that fish stay alive, even if it's in an aquarium or even released. I would like to know if anyone could determine what made that fish get so damn huge. (other than the obvious lots of food, stress free area to live in stuff) genetics? raw sewage? nuclear waste?

Pretty cool though.
Agreed, Id prefer the thing be alive to study for years to come but realistically the thing was injured and in a continuous 15 minute battle for its life. Unless they had a live well on hand big enough to handle it or immediately got it back in the water to resuscitate it, it didnt have much of a chance.
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Old 07-22-2010, 09:31 AM   #15
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Agreed, Id prefer the thing be alive to study for years to come but realistically the thing was injured and in a continuous 15 minute battle for its life. Unless they had a live well on hand big enough to handle it or immediately got it back in the water to resuscitate it, it didnt have much of a chance.
I couldnt imagine a fish that old and heavy putting up too much of a fight.
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