If certified, Arizona will have a new record Gila trout that could also be a world record.
It wasn’t a bass he was targeting, nor a catfish he thought he hooked, but the trophy fish Arizona angler David Worsham caught on June 2 might be a world record.
Worsham was after big bass when he hooked and landed a 5.12-pound Gila trout out of Goldwater Lake near Prescott, a potential state and world record, according to a news release.
“It kind of fought like a catfish at first,” the Avondale, Ariz., resident told the Arizona Game and Fish Department. “Once it started getting closer to shore it started peeling drag. I loosened the drag so she could run a little bit. I didn’t want to horse it to shore and chance it breaking off.”
If certified, the 23-inch fish would easily break the recognized state record (3 pounds, 5.6 ounces) caught in 2011 at Frye Mesa Reservoir. The current world record recognized by the International Game Fish Association is 3-7, also caught at Frye Mesa.
The rare Gila trout are found only in Arizona and New Mexico and is one of two trout species native to Arizona. The New Mexico state record is 4-8.
Worsham, who will keep the fish, caught it on a lipless crankbait after he cast the lure at a big fish cruising back and forth between shallow and deep water.
State biologists believe the potential record came from brood stock from the Mora National Fish Hatchery in New Mexico, particularly from 2016, when several 2- to 3-pound Gilas were stocked. More stocking on Goldwater Lake is scheduled this month, the state said.
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