Have you ever heard the story of the guy who caught the world record striped bass? Talking the one before the new record caught last year.
Guy caught it in a storm off the NJ coast with one witness – and pretty much everyone else disbelieved him.
The effects on his life were bad. And all he did wrong was catch a record.
Then when Manabu Kurita caught his world record largie in Japan, some of the same types of rumors popped up. Kurita was at the Classic a couple years ago (if memory serves) and some folks there were talking about how he supposedly did this or that.
So now we come to the story of the guy who apparently, allegedly, maybe broke the Arkansas state largie record…by 1 ounce (16-05) at Lake Dunn. Happened about a week ago.
If you haven’t heard, the record was invalidated because turns out this gent didn’t have a valid fishing license – something he attempted to rectify after the catch. But that’s not all. Check this quote from a fieldandstream.com article:
“I should have had my license,” Crowder said. “I’ve had several tickets for fishing without a license before, me and my two kids too. It ain’t that we don’t mean to get them, we just forgot to get them.”
That article also says this:
Arkansas Game and Fish Commission goes through a series of investigations when a state record is at stake, Stephens said, including x-rays to make sure the fish has not been tampered with.
If you’re going to go through all that, why not – after the fish has been weighed – give the lucky angler a polygraph first? That would get pretty much all the ducks in a row (or not) right away. Questions like:
> Did you have a valid fishing license at the time of this catch (which the Game and Fish agency should check first anyhow)
> Did you find this fish floating in the lake?
would be good ones for starters. In other words, are you legal and was the fish legally caught?
Because without that, even if the fish was legally caught the rumor mill will spin. Usually not a good thing.
One More Thing
Here’s my final question: If someone catches a record fish without a valid license, is it not a record?
Put it this way. A 16-year-old angler catches a 22 pound 15 ounce largie. While fishing…meaning not doing drugs or other bad stuff. Problem is, he forgot to get his license. Maybe he was fishing the same little pond he always has, for catfish, bluegill, crappie, whatever.
Is that not a world-record bass?
In case anyone no understando the ingles, no way am I advocating fishing without a license. Just asking the question because, just like antlers from poached deer get scored and ogled, I’d want to see that bass, hear the kid’s story, see him feel great about it and have him learn a lesson from it that hopefully other kids would learn too.
That’s where I think I’m coming out, anyway.