Two Saltwater State Records in North Carolina

Two Saltwater State Records in North Carolina
Louis Guzman with his North Carolina state-record gag grouper. (Photo courtesy of N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries)

Two saltwater state records in North Carolina have fallen this summer..

The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries certified two saltwater state records caught this summer.

Mark Davis of Lexington, S.C., set the first state record for gray snapper (also called mangrove snapper) with a 12-pound, 5-ounce fish June 14 off Ocean Isle Beach.

state records Pictured: The new North Carolina state record for gray snapper caught by Mark Davis of Lexington, S.C. (Photo courtesy of North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries


According to the state agency, there was no previous state record for gray snapper: "To establish a state record, an internal division board determines that a fish was exceptionally large for North Carolina waters and within a reasonable range of the world record."


>> Click here to read about more state records

Davis' catch measured 28.94 inches long and had an 18.9-inch girth. It was caught on live menhaden, with 65-pound braided line and a Penn Carnage International 12 VSX rod and reel.

state records Louis Guzman with his North Carolina state-record gag grouper. (Photo courtesy of N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries)

On May 24, Louis Guzman of Clayton caught a state-record gag grouper off Morehead City that weighed 48 pounds. The previous record (caught off Carolina Beach in 2017) weighed 47.4 pounds.

It was 45.25 inches long, with a girth of 29.62 inches.


Guzman was fishing with live bait on 30-pound Berkley Big Game line with a Shakespeare Ugly Stik Custom USCB 1170-M rod and a Truth SG reel. 

The International Game Fish Association all-tackle world records for the two species are 80-6 (Florida, 1993) for gag grouper, and 18-10 (Louisiana, 2015) for gray snapper.

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