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Two anglers wasted little time altering the West Virginia state fishing record books at the start of the year.
The West Virginia Division on Natural Resources reported that on January 3rd, Zachary Adkins of Cabins, WV, had caught the new state record grass carp.
At a stout 53.1 inches and 59 pounds, Adkins’ grass carp was caught using a swimbait on Warden Lake in Hardy County.
The fish was long enough to secure the West Virginia state record for length. The certified weight record, however, belongs to a grass carp caught on the same lake in 2005 by William R. Taucher.
That fish measured 50.75 inches — well over two inches shorter than Adkins’. It weighed an astounding 71.69 pounds, however.
The other state record — a blue catfish — was caught on January 11th by Justin Conner. Using cut shad on the Ohio River, Conner hauled in a 49.84 inch, 58.38 pound monster.
Like Adkins, Conner also secured the West Virginia State Record for length. His catch displaced the previous length record held by Austin Hoffman. Hoffman’s catch — also caught on the Ohio River — measured 47.75 inches and was caught in 2014.
West Virginia’s certified weight record for blue catfish — which, unsurprisingly, was registered on the Ohio River — belongs to Mark Blauvelt. His 59.74 pound catfish caught caught in 2016.
*It should be noted that West Virginia records state records for both length and width. While numerous fish hold the record for both categories, many are split between different catches.