Two New Record Catches

Anglers fishing in Maryland started the new year off well by catching two new state records.

On January 2, Kenneth Westerfeld of College Point, NY, boated a 28.8 lb tautog. The fish was caught 20 miles southeast of Ocean City in about 75' of water. Westerfeld was fishing on board the charter boat, Fish Bound, with Captain Kane Bounds. The previous Maryland record was 23 lb, and the current IGFA world record is 25 lb. Westerfeld plans to submit his catch to the IGFA as a potential new all-tackle world record.

"Ocean City is the best place for big tautog," said Westerfeld. "The water clarity is very good and the offshore wrecks hold some really big fish. I've been fishing very hard for over 20 years to catch a 20 pound tog."

Chain Pickerel
Lee Haile III's record chain pickerel. Photo credit: Eddie Haile.

Also fishing on January 2, Lee Haile III of Towson caught an 8 lb chain pickerel in an unnamed Eastern Shore pond near Salisbury. The fish was caught on 8 lb test braided line with a 20 lb mono leader. It beat the previous state record of 7 lb, 4 oz. The current IGFA world record chain pickerel is 9 lb, 6oz."I've been fishing for pickerel for over 38 years, and I just knew this one was exceptional," explained Haile. "When I saw the fish in the boat, I said that we needed to go in because this could be a record fish."

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