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Topic Review (Newest First)
01-22-2004 02:07 PM
Dble Haul Agreed!

I have to admit I do see the IGFA's side of this, especially with only one picture to go by and no unbiased witness. These people seem like straight arrows, but how many fish do you know that have grown after release?

Of course none of mine have. I'm an honest fisherman.....or is that an oxymoron?
01-22-2004 01:31 PM
"No good deed will go unpunished."

This is exactly the kind of fish we want in the 'gene pool.' Good Go to both of them!
01-22-2004 10:14 AM
Dble Haul
All tackle record denied

Here's an article that shows the status of this fish, and that the issue should finally be put to bed.

IGFA Denies Record For Huge California Largemouth

DANIA BEACH, FL--After months of painstaking deliberation, officials of the International Game Fish Association recently denied the world-record application made by Leaha Trew of Santa Rosa, California, for a 22-pound, 8-ounce largemouth she caught and released Aug. 24, 2003.

The action may be the final chapter in a long, drawn-out process that had the fishing world pressing to know whether the 71-year-old world record, a 22 1/4-pound bass caught by George Perry on Montgomery Lake, Georgia, would finally fall.

Trew caught the big bass while fishing with her son, NAFC member Javad Trew, on Spring Lake, a 72-acre flood-control lake within Spring Lake Regional Park in Sanoma County. The water is noted for producing trophy-class largemouths, including a number of line-class records caught by Javad, as well as the 24-pounder Club member Paul Duclos caught (and weighed on a bathroom scale) in 1997.

"With a record of this magnitude, you have to be absolutely certain," said Michael Leech, IGFA President. "There was nothing wrong with what, Leaha Trew and her son provided in the application, there just wasn't enough-no fish, just one photo, and no unbiased witness. It's just not enough to replace such an important record."

Trew also applied for record status to the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame, which also denied the big bass as a new world record.

"It met all the requirements for a record, but not for an All-Tackle record. "said Executive Director Ted Dzialo, "We granted it a 12-pound line-class record."

Because the bass was released and could not be checked for foreign objects and other discrepancies, the NFWFHF could not grant an official world record. It did, however, recognize Trew's bass as an "Unofficial World Record.

"The rules say a potential world record must be examined; unfortunately that means killing the fish."

The Catch

Trew and her son had been fishing about two hours that Sunday afternoon, and were casting plastic worms from their inflatable boat along the lip of a 20-foot hole on the lake's north end.

Tiring of worm fishing, she tied on a Storm Suspending WildEye Swim Shad, a 7-inch saltwater swimbait she says she bought because, "it just looked like it would catch bass."

The rest of her rig included an 8 1/2-foot Shakespeare Intrepid rod, Shimano Stradic 4000 baitcaster and 12-pound Stren Magnaflex mono.

The fish hit on a steady swimming retrieve, and fought for 10 minutes before coming to the boat. "I thought I'd snagged weeds at first," she says, "then the line started moving toward open water."

Questions Answered

On shore the pair measured and weighed the bass on an IGFA-certified BogaGrip hand-held scale. "It was 29 inches long, with a 25-inch girth, and pulled the scale to just over 22 pounds, 8 ounces," says Javad, who's entered numbers of trophy-class largemouths in the NAFC Catch & Release Contest.

The BogaGrip measures in eight-ounce increments, so the NFWFHA recognized the lesser weight for its line class record."

They photographed the fish one time because, according to Javad, "there was only one exposure left on the disposable camera. I debated going to buy another one, but it was a five-mile drive and we were going to release the fish anyway."

That's a sore point among the Internet bulletin board and chatroom crowd who say releasing the fish is adequate reason for people to be skeptical about its reported weight.

"We always catch-and-release," explains Javad. "Besides, I really didn't think you could keep fish. There are signs posted that say removing any animal, alive or dead, from the park is prohibited."

Spring Park Ranger confirmed the signs' existence, but added that small print at the bottom excludes fish.

"The lake is under general fishing regulations, a 12-inch minimum length limit and 5-fish daily bag limit."

After submitting record applications, the Trews contacted tackle manufacturers about possible promotion partnerships, yet remained publicly silent, refusing all media requests for interviews.

"The IGFA told us it would be best not to talk about it until we knew something for sure," says Trew.

"There really was no reason to discuss it before a decision was made," adds Javad.

Of the tackle companies, just one has shown interest so far. "You can say that Javad will be a member of our field staff," says Stren's David Justice-Kurt Beckstrom
12-05-2003 03:33 PM
SDHflyfisher that is one fat fish
12-04-2003 02:40 PM
Dble Haul
At last, a relevant article....

Bass subject of record dispute

International Game Fish Association

The woman who caught the fish let it go, so it may not qualify for the books.

Statesman Journal
December 3, 2003

It’s a whopper, no doubt. The problem is that it wasn’t a keeper.

So the question for experts is whether the fish is worth $44,448 a pound.

If it is declared the biggest largemouth bass ever caught, the fish Leaha Trew is holding up in a picture could be worth $1 million in endorsements, ap-pearances and speaking fees.

Because of what’s at stake, that’s a really big “if,” said Doug Blodgett, the record administrator for the International Game Fish Association in Florida.

“It is exciting,” he said Tuesday. “But because we realize what a holy grail it is, we’re asking everybody’s opinion.

“We’re really going to discuss this one.”

According to what the fishing duo told association officials, Trew and her son, Javard, were fishing Aug. 24 from a 13-foot inflatable boat on a 72-acre lake at Spring Lake Regional Park in Sonoma County near Trew’s home in Santa Rosa, Calif.

Trew had just switched from a plastic worm when the lunker bass whacked the Storm WildEye 7-inch jerkbait on the end of her 8-pound-test line.

According to their account, Trew’s son netted the fish after a 10-minute battle, and they went to shore and weighed the huge bass on a Bogagrip scale.

“I don’t even want to repeat what I said when I saw it in the net,” Javard said about seeing the fish for the first time.

The scale read 22½ pounds, which is 4 ounces more than the current world all-tackle record that has stood since 1932.

Trew and Javard measure the fish: 29 inches long and 25 inches around the middle.

Javard snapped a single picture of his mom holding the fish toward the camera.

Then they released it.

“Yeah,” Javard said Tuesday when asked if they should have kept the bass. “We didn’t know what the hell we were doing at the time.

“We just measured it, weighed it, and turned it loose, just like we always do.”

And therein lies the conundrum for the record-keepers, Blodgett said.

The only thing that officials know for sure is telling the truth is that Bogagrip scale.

“The scale was sent in beforehand,” Blodgett said about the record application. “We do trust that … to be accurate.”

Javard said his mom isn’t talking much to anyone about the potential world record and won’t until a final decision is made and announced by association officials.

There’s a four-person panel of association experts studying the information submitted in the record application, the photo, the scale, asking questions and weighing the answers.

“There’s only one picture,” Blodgett said. “We can’t even verify the size.”

Also, authorities on largemouth bass and other association officials have submitted opinions and observations, he added.

“As far as the endorsements and stuff like that, we know the story that it’s worth millions of dollars,” Blodgett said about the record.

Trew’s son has a history of record submissions with the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame, another record-keeping organization based in Wisconsin, Blodgett said.

That would suggest he should have known what his mother was holding, Blodgett said about the massive bass.

To get a sense of what’s at stake, a little history is in order.

June 2, 1932, George W. Perry battled a 22-pound, 4-ounce largemouth from Montgomery Lake, Georgia, using a Creek Chub 2401 Wiggle Fish lure.

During the seven decades since, several million anglers have tried to beat it, coming close a couple of times, but never topping it.

“That’s a long time,” Chuck Lang of Salem said. “And the fishing pressure back 70 years ago wasn’t as much as now. If there is a big fish out there, chances are now it’s going to be caught.”

Lang is conservation chairman for the Oregon chapter of the Bass Anglers Sportsmans Society, a national warmwater conservation and bass tournament fishing organization.

A potential record coming from California makes sense, Lans said.

Right below Perry’s world-beater, the next nine largest bass on record have been taken from California lakes.

Four of those — including the all-time No. 2, a shade more than 22 pounds caught by Bib Crupi in March 1991 — came from Castaic Lake in Southern California.

“I really think California has a better chance to put out big fish,” Lang said. “And you have to give a lot of credit for that not only to the environment but to the Fish and Wildlife Department for valuing warmwater fishing.”

Blodgett wouldn’t hazard a guess as to when the association would make its final ruling, or what the verdict would be. But he added that he hopes it’s soon because of the media calls. They have picked up since a story about Trew’s bass appeared in the November-December issue of the association newsletter, International Angler.

“The last 20 people to call all asked the same question,” Blodgett said. “As far as a timeline, I don’t know” when a decision will be made.

If Blodgett was hedging his bets about the outcome, Lang was more blunt, given the implications of the decision, saying it is a matter of habeas corpus, a legal term that in Latin means “you have the body.”

“I think the world’s largest bass is going to require a dead bass,” he said.

Attached is the photo to which the article refers.
12-01-2003 09:13 PM

Dble et all,
Went to / Interesting read, lots of info. Put it on my Fave's list. Thanks
12-01-2003 12:41 PM
Dble Haul Things are clearing up....

Thanks for the info, Sean. I have just been informed that this is a pending line class record for 12lb test, and that the record may not be verified for the all tackle record. This is because the fish was released, and despite the fact that a certified weighing device was used and two witnesses were there, the fish was not available for autopsy. Apparently this is a common practice for some of the more popular the past, sinkers have been added to stomachs and such to increase the weight of a fish. It's unfortunate that such a fish needs to die for verification, but such are the times we live in where a few rotten apples have tried to cheat in the past.

Regardless of the outcome, that is one heck of a fish, and one that would doubtless give quite a tug on the end of the line.
12-01-2003 12:15 PM

IGFA has a pending record:

Bass, largemouth 06 kg (12 lb) 08/24/2003 22 lb 8 oz
10.20kg Leaha Trew
Scientific Name:
Freshwater / Saltwater:
Catch Place:

Micropterus salmoides FW Spring Lake, California, USA
12-01-2003 10:23 AM
Dble Haul
Pending world record largemouth

I got some fuzzy details about a potential world record largemouth bass that was recently caught in California. The unofficial weight was 22 pounds, eight ounces. This would break the long standing record of 22 pounds, four ounces held by George Perry of Georgia.

I'd like to really confirm this. Can anyone out there provide additional details or a link to something concrete regarding this? Apparently there were two witnesses and it was weighed on a certified scale, but you know how these things are....I'd like to know if this information is valid or is six degrees of separation from a rumor that's continuing to morph.

Thanks, and if it's genuine, congrats to the new record holder.

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