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Below is content from the 2013 guide.

Record Fish Program

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photo_Page-8_opt.jpgThe DNR has kept tabs on the largest fish of various species caught in the state’s lakes, rivers and streams for 50 years.

Today’s Indiana Record Fish Program recognizes 50 species from a 3½-ounce flier to a 104-pound blue catfish.

“The purpose of the Record Fish Program is to recognize the biggest fish for that species caught in Indiana ever,” said Jamie Smyth, the program’s administrator in the DNR Division of Fish & Wildlife.

Only one record, a freshwater drum caught by Garland Fellers, still stands from the program’s inaugural year, 1963. Another record, for hybrid striped bass, has been set more than 20 times since established in 1985.

Some anglers luck into catching a record; others put in nearly a lifetime of pursuit. Either way, all have to follow the rules to make the list. Once an angler has landed the big one, getting into the record book is easy — if you carefully follow the process to ensure the catch is ruled legitimate.

“The program goes by weight,” Smyth said, “and the fish has to be weighed on a certified scale. You need to have two witnesses there when you do that.”

Some additional requirements include providing photographs of the fish and information on location of the catch. A DNR fisheries biologist may meet with you to make a positive species identification.

If you’re feeling lucky, read the program requirements at Fishing.IN.gov before casting. Some rules, like not freezing the fish and weighing it on a legally certified scale, could be easy to overlook otherwise.

Sometimes, even with an angler having good intentions and biologists on hand, identifying record fish can be tricky. In 2003 Ronald Moeller of Dyer caught an Indiana record bullhead catfish. His 7-pound fish broke the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame’s world record as well.

Or so the DNR and Moeller thought.

The opening sentence of a 2003 DNR news release sums it up: “An Indiana record bullhead catfish has turned out to be…..bull.”

The catfish was misidentified when an assistant biologist thought the half-frozen fish had a flat tail instead of a V-shaped tail, a key characteristic of a bullhead. Other biologists mistakenly confirmed the ID from photos.

The episode unraveled when the DNR announced the new record and released photos of the fish. Many anglers and a few other DNR biologists were skeptical.

A re-inspection confirmed their suspicions, and the record was rescinded.

The almost record-holder took the news well. “I’ve caught a lot of bullheads in the area that looked similar,” Moeller said, “so now I’ve learned the difference….I guess it’s like a referee blowing a call. I’ll still go fishing.”

Even novice anglers know every catch comes with a fish story. Does that mean record fish come with really big fish stories? Decide for yourself.

For more information about the Indiana Record Fish and Fish of the Year programs, including a link to an entry form, go to Wildlife.IN.gov/3577.htm on the DNR website.

Indiana State Fish Records

 

Species

Weight

Water, County

Angler

Year

Atlantic Salmon

14 lb. 4 oz.

Lake Michigan, Lake

Gene Tarrant

1979

Bighead Carp

53 lb. 8 oz.

White River, Pike

Duane Stafford

2000

Blue Catfish

104 lb.

Ohio River

Bruce Midkiff

1999

Bluegill

3 lb. 4 oz.

Pond, Greene

Harold L. Catey

1972

Bowfin (Dogfish)

16.52 lb.

Mutton Creek, Jackson

Paul Huber

2009

Brook Trout

3 lb. 15 ½ oz.

Lake Gage, Steuben

Sonny Bashore

1973

Brown Trout

29.03 lb.

Lake Michigan, Lake

Glen Duesing

2006

Buffalo

53.9 lb.

Oak Hill Pond, Gibson

Kenneth Houchin

2002

Bullhead

4.9 lb.

Potato Creek SP, St. Joseph

Darren Robertson

1994

Burbot

7 lb. 11 oz.

Lake Michigan

Larry Malicki

1990

Channel Catfish

37 lb. 8 oz.

Lake, Vanderburgh

Randy E. Jones

1980

Chinook Salmon

38 lb.

Trail Creek, LaPorte

Rich Baker

1980

Cisco

3 lb. 12 oz.

Big Cedar Lake, Whitley

Phillip Wisniewski

1980

Coho Salmon

20 lb. 12 oz.

Lake Michigan, LaPorte

John Beutner

1972

Common Carp

43 lb. 4 oz.

Pike Lake, Kosciusko

Russell Long

1989

Crappie

4 lb. 11 oz.

Private lake, Jennings

Willis Halcomb

1994

Flathead Catfish

79 lb. 8 oz.

White River, Lawrence

Glen T. Simpson

1966

Flier

3 ½ oz.

Stream, Jackson

Harold H. Otte

1983

Freshwater Drum

30 lb.

White River, Martin

Garland Fellers

1963

Goldeye

2.3 lb.

Wabash River, Vermillion

Brock Marietta

2008

Grass Carp

65.2 lb.

Private pond, Morgan

David Hughes

2002

Green Sunfish

1 lb. 10 oz.

Pit, Fountain

Terry Keller

1987

Hybrid Striped Bass

22 lb. 2oz.

Tippecanoe River, Carroll

David G. Coffman

2005

Hybrid Walleye

8 lb. 8 oz.

Scottsburg Reservoir, Scott

Doug Young

1999

Lake Trout

29 lb. 4 oz.

Lake Michigan

Harold Rodriquez

1993

Lake Whitefish

4 lb. 6 oz.

Lake Michigan

Donald Hans

2012

Largemouth Bass

14 lb. 12 oz.

Lake, Harrison

Jenifer Schultz

1991

Longnose Gar

22.32 lb.

East Fork White River, Pike

Mark Brittain

2008

Muskellunge

42 lb. 8 oz.

James Lake, Kosciusko

Darrin Conley

2002

Northern Pike

30 lb. 2 oz.

Clear Lake, Steuben

Jack Barnes

1992

Pink Salmon

2 lb. 12½ oz.

Lake Michigan, Lake

Richard J. Lisac

1985

Rainbow Trout

18 lb. 8 oz.

Clear Lake, Steuben

Bill Bigger

1988

Redear Sunfish

3 lb. 10 oz.

Lake, Brown

R. Peckman

1974

Rock Bass

3 lb.

Sugar Creek, Hancock

David Thomas

1969

Sauger

6 lb. 1 oz.

Tippecanoe River, Carroll

Mark Bigger

1983

Shortnose Gar

1.58 lb

Wabash River, Wabash

Lindsey Fleshood

2010

Shovelnose Sturgeon

14 lb. 8 oz.

Wabash River, Fountain

Mike Latoz

1999

Silver Carp

15 lb. 8oz.

White River/West Fork, Greene

Daniel Keller

2003

Smallmouth Bass

7 lb. 4 oz.

Twin Lake, LaGrange

Dana Yoder

1992

Spotted Bass

5 lb. 5 oz.

Vigo

Larry Hinesley, Jr.

2006

Steelhead Trout

26.62 lb.

Trail Creek, LaPorte

Evan Nicholson

1999

Striped Bass

39.08 lb.

Harden Reservoir, Parke

Jonathan VanHook

2010

Sucker

12 lb. 3.3 oz.

White River, Bartholomew

John Britton

1991

Tiger Muskellunge

24 lb.

Wolf Lake, Lake

Michael Senics

1995

Tiger Trout

3 lb.

Lake Michigan, Lake

Mike Ratter

1978

Walleye

14 lb. 4 oz.

Kankakee River, Lake

Leon Richart

1974

14 lb. 4 oz.

Tippecanoe River, Pulaski

Donald Tedford

1977

Warmouth

1.4 lb.

North Dugger pit, Sullivan

Jack Tolbert

2002

White Bass

4 lb. 3 oz.

Lake Freeman, Carroll

James Wagner

1965

White Catfish

9.72 lb.

Pond, Wabash

Melissa Grimes

1985

Yellow Bass

2 lb. 15 oz.

Morse Reservoir, Hamilton

Jim Raymer

2000

Yellow Perch

2 lb. 8 oz.

Gravel pit, Vigo

Roy W. Burkel Jr.

1981

 

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