World-Record Snakehead Fish Caught In U.S. | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

World-Record Snakehead Fish Caught In U.S.

A Virginia man has caught the largest northern snakehead on record with a rod and reel, landing a 17-pound, 6-ounce specimen of the fish often called "Frankenfish" for their monster-like appearance and tenacious survival skills.

Caleb Newton, a plumber who lives in Spotsylvania County, Va., caught the fish in June during a tournament on Aquia Creek, a tributary of the Potomac River that's near the Quantico Marine Corps Base, according to the Fredericksburg, Va., Free Lance-Star.

Newton tells the newspaper that it took about a minute to get the fish in his boat. And measuring three feet, it was a tight fit to get the record catch into his cooler, he says.

But, he adds, it didn't give him a whale of a fight. "I caught one 13 pounds on Saturday, and that one fought harder," he tells the Free Lance-Star.

Newton's fish bests the previous record catch of a 17-pound, 4-ounce northern snakehead in 2004 in Japan, according to the International Game Fish Association.

According to the IGFA website, the group awards world records for seven varieties of the snakehead, with only the giant snakehead being larger. The record-setter for that fish was hauled in earlier this year in Thailand — and weighed in at 26 pounds.

Other than Newton's catch, one other IGFA record was set in America — a great snakehead that weighed 14 pounds was caught in Florida earlier this year. All the other snakehead records were set in Asia, where the fish is native.

Northern snakeheads are known for having sharp teeth, slimy skin, a voracious appetite and the ability to survive on land for days at a time. A spawning population as found in a pond in Maryland near the Potomac River in 2002.

The predator's move into U.S. ecosystems has spurred efforts to control its growth, including holding tournaments — and spreading the word that it's a tasty fish worth the trouble of catching.

"It tastes very good. I like them deep fried or grilled with onions and butter," fisherman Brett Miron told Agence France-Presse last month at a tournament in Maryland.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

In Explorations Of Muslim Identity, Playwright Finds Fault Lines Of Faith

Ayad Akhtar plumbs his past to grapple with what it means to be Muslim in America. While some accuse him of airing dirty laundry, Akhtar uses such questions not just for rupture — but renewal, too.
NPR

Alcohol Test: Does Eating Yeast Keep You From Getting Drunk?

When we read about a way to stave off intoxication in Esquire, we were dubious. So we bought a breathylzer, a few IPAs and tested out the kooky theory.
WAMU 88.5

Another Candidate Joins D.C. Attorney General Race

The latest candidate is Lateefah Williams, a 37-year-old attorney who once worked as counsel to the state Senate delegation in Prince George's County.
NPR

A New Device Lets You Track Your Preschooler ... And Listen In

LG's KizON wristband lets you keep tabs on your child. But some experts say such devices send the wrong message about the world we live in. And the gadgets raise questions about kids' privacy rights.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.