Record Recalled on Huge Catfish Caught in CT

Ben Tomkunas holds a catfish he caught in Coventry, Conn.
Chris Braga via AP

A catfish caught in Connecticut last month smashed a state record, but the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection has recalled the announcement that the fish, which was eaten, has set a record.

Ben Tomkunas, 25, caught the 21.3-pound fish late at night in Coventry on Aug. 21. It was longer than three feet.

Connecticut Fish and Wildlife said in an initial Facebook post that the catch was a white catfish and that it easily broke the previous state record for the species of 12.7 pounds.

On Monday, CT Fish and Wildlife posted on Facebook that, "(w)ithout the ability to examine the actual fish, identification is left to still images and videos, which have proven to be ambiguous and inconclusive to definitively identify the species of catfish in this case. To maintain the integrity of the state record dataset, we are reversing the initial announcement that this 21.3 pound fish was the new state record White Catfish.

The International Game Fish Association has recorded the world record for a white catfish catch to be 19.3 pounds for a fish caught in 2005 in California.

White catfish are one of several species of catfish in Connecticut. Other species of catfish, like blue catfish or catfish found in Asia, can dwarf the white catfish.

Associated Press and NBC Connecticut
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