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By the time 2020 concludes, we may look back on this as the “Year of the Yellow Perch.”
In addition to an angler catching the Maine state record yellow perch during her first time ice fishing, Missouri also claimed a new yellow perch record to kick off the year. That fish — weighing 1 pound, 14 ounces, was caught by Tyler Halley of Maryville on January 24th. Halley’s catch displaced the previous Missouri record by three ounces.
As of this writing, however, a new Missouri state record yellow perch has been certified.
A mere three days after Halley’s catch, Brian Holiday of Fordland, Missouri, hauled in a whopper while fishing on Bull Shoals. That catch weighed in at an impressive 2 pounds, 3 ounces.
It certainly seems there must be something in the water in Missouri. It’s rare that two state records of the same species are caught in the same state on different bodies of water that close together.
But things may get even more interesting for perch enthusiasts in the Show-Me State.
A video posted to YouTube by user Jason Grimm shows anglers getting an official weight on a yellow perch (also caught on Bull Shoals) by Steve Mullen on February 17th. The weight in the video shows the fish at 2 pounds, 2 ounces — just shy of the new record set by Brian Holiday.
However, according to a post on the Ozark Anglers forum, Mullen eventually got his fish weighed at a local bait shop. On the certified scale, Mullen’s catch registered at 2.216 pounds. Converted to ounces, this would technically tie the new record.
It will be interesting to see if Missouri winds up with its third state record yellow perch in under a month.