Idaho Angler Accidentally Smashes State Catfish Record

by Lauren Boisvert

Idaho angler Paul Newman was reportedly fishing for sturgeon when he caught a record-breaking catfish on C.J. Strike Reservoir on July 20. The reservoir is 7,500 acres of water that sits between the Snake River and the Bruneau River in southwestern Idaho. Newman’s catfish came in at 42.5 inches. This shattered the previous record of a 33-inch catfish that was caught on Lake Lowell near Boise.

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game reported that Newman weighed his catfish on a digital scale, coming in at 37 pounds. USA Today has the photos. Unfortunately, he didn’t weigh it on a certified scale as well. So, while Newman will hold the Catch-and-Release Record, he wasn’t able to get the Certified Weight Record. Nevertheless, his catfish definitely outweighed the previous record of 32.9 pounds. Not so much this record-breaking catfish in Virginia, but about halfway there.

The IDFG mentioned that the current weight record catfish was caught only a few weeks ago by resident Cody Kastner, who was also fishing on the C.J. Strike Reservoir. Is there something in the water at C.J. Strike that makes the catfish grow to massive sizes? Or is this just Mother Nature flexing her muscles and showing off? Either way, anglers in Idaho are definitely coming away with some record-smashing catches lately.

While Idaho is Rife With Huge Catfish, Texas Anglers Haul in Massive Alligator Gar

A group of anglers in Texas managed to haul in a gargantuan alligator gar recently but didn’t quite break the current Texas record. South Texas Bowfishing, a charter fishing company, took a group of guests out on the water. They probably didn’t anticipate coming back with a 271-pound alligator gar.

The gar was almost 8 feet long, coming in at exactly 7 feet 11 inches. The fishing company took to Facebook to post their group’s prize. They even included a photo of one of the anglers posing alongside the gar. The fish nearly dwarfs the man as they lay side-by-side.

“New personal record for South Texas Bowfishing!!” the company wrote on Facebook. “Had a great group of repeat customers that connected on true once in a lifetime trophy. 7’ 11” giant with a 48” girth weighing in at 271 pounds.”

Scott Meshell runs South Texas Bowfishing, and he credited Texas residents LG Selvidge, Tim Selvidge, and John Jackson with the incredible catch. It was surely an amazing moment for these anglers, but unfortunately, even with the gar’s mammoth size, it came in just 19 pounds shy of the current state record. Maybe they’ll get it next time.

“[It was] definitely an amazing experience for me as a guide,” Scott Meshell said to Fox News Digital. “It’s one of my highlights.” Hauling in a massive fish that’s descended from the Mesozoic era? I’d call that a highlight, too.