Catch of record-size carp ‘like pulling the plug out of the river’

An Oklahoma angler hoping to snag a giant paddlefish on Saturday instead landed a bighead carp that weighed 20 pounds more than the existing world record.

The 110-pound carp was caught by Gabe Brannick during a High Water Guide Service expedition on the Neosho River.

“These fish pack a lot of fight and this one was like pulling the plug out of the river,” High Water Guide Service exclaimed on Facebook.

The International Game Fish Assn. lists as the world record a 90-pound bighead carp caught at Tennessee’s Guntersville Lake in 2005.

Brannick’s carp won’t qualify for a world record because it was snagged instead of baited. (Snagging is the common method for catching paddlefish.)

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But Zach Fort, owner of High Water Guide Service, told FTW Outdoors that he’s trying to persuade the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation to have Brannick’s carp listed as a state record.

Bighead carp, native to eastern China, are an invasive species. At present, they are not included on Oklahoma’s list of fishing records.

However, Elaine A. Gainer, Aquatic Nuisance Species/Fish Kill Coordinator for the ODWC, confirmed to FTW Outdoors that she’s “working with higher-ups to see if I can get the green light to recognize bighead carp in our state records.”

Gainer said her team receives sporadic reports of bighead carp catches at this time of year, mostly from anglers who were targeting paddlefish. (Anglers are asked not to release bighead carp because they compete with and threaten paddlefish and other native species.)

If Oklahoma did recognize bighead carp records, Gainer added, “the 110-pounder from this weekend would absolutely take the cake for the record here in Oklahoma.”

–Top image shows Gabe Brannick posing with his 110-pound bighead carp 

Story originally appeared on For The Win