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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

December 31, 2009 at 2:18 PM

Possible new world record largemouth bass still under review

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No decision has been made yet by the International Game Fish Association (IGFA) on the possible new record largemouth bass that was caught last summer by an angler in Japan.

The IGFA, the 70-year old non-profit fisheries conservation, education and record-keeping body, received the application this past fall for the 22 pound, 4 ounce largemouth bass caught July 2 in Lake Biwa northeast of Kyoto by Manabu Kurita, age 32, of Aichi, Japan.

According to the IGFA Web site they are still waiting additional information before making a decision for world record recognition.

IGFA conservation director Jason Schratwieser said the World All-Tackle application is still under review after it was received in mid-September through the Japan Game Fish Association (JGFA).

“We’ve been corresponding with the angler via our sister organization, the JGFA,” Schratwieser said on the Web site.

Photos and video were also submitted with Kurita’s written documentation.

If confirmed Kurita’s largemouth bass would tie the current record held for over 77 years by George Perry caught on Georgia’s Montgomery Lake, caught back on June 2, 1932 near Jacksonville, Georgia.

In North America the largemouth bass, and especially the All-Tackle record, is considered by millions of anglers as the “holy grail” of freshwater fish because of its popularity and the longevity of Perry’s record.

Largemouth bass have also been introduced in many countries and in Japan fisheries officials consider it an invasive species.

In addition, because bass are not native and are stocked in Japan, many speculated that the big bass was a sterile triploid. However when biologists in Japan examined the ova of the big female they concluded that the fish was not triploid.

IGFA World Records Coordinator Becky Wright reported Kurita’s fish measured 27.20 inches long and a girth of 26.77 inches. Kurita was using a blue gill as live bait trolling through a canal.

Annually the IGFA publishes a comprehensive list of current records on nearly 1,100 species of fresh and saltwater fish across the globe in its highly acclaimed World Record Game Fishes (WRGF) book which is divided into all-tackle, line classes, fly, and junior record categories.

The IGFA has been recognized as the official keeper of world saltwater fishing records since its founding in 1939. In 1978 it added the field of freshwater record-keeping when Field & Stream magazine transferred its 68 years of records to the IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame & Museum, the association’s world headquarters in Dania Beach, Fla.

(Photo courtesy of the IGFA)

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