Cape Fair angler catches state-record white bass

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STONE COUNTY, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) reports James Wright of Cape Fair became the most recent record-setting angler in Missouri when he hooked a white bass on Table Rock Lake on a trotline. The new “alternative method” record white bass caught by Wright on April 6 weighed 3-pounds, 4-ounces with a length of 18 3/4 inches. Wright was using shad for bait to try to catch catfish, but instead he caught a state-record white bass.

“I was in my new boat baiting hooks on a trotline, and out of nowhere something hit the line hard,” Wright said. “I grabbed the line and yanked it, and then the fight was on. I finally got it in the boat after about three minutes and was totally shocked to see that it was a white bass.”

Wright added that he wasn’t sure if it was state record so he contacted MDC immediately.

“Once MDC confirmed that the fish was a state record I was so excited,” he said. “This was my dad’s and my dream. I just can’t believe it came true! This is by far the biggest white bass I have ever caught on a trotline. I plan on having it mounted so I’ll never forget catching a fish like that.”

MDC staff verified the record-weight fish using a certified scale in the town of Galena.

“2016 is shaping up to be a year for state-record fish,” said MDC Fisheries Programs Specialist Andrew Branson. “We have already had six new records so far, which is more than an entire year sometimes. The mild weather we have had so far this year means more anglers are fishing, and catching big fish.”

Wright’s recent catch set the state record for white bass in the alternative methods category.

Missouri state-record fish are recognized in two categories: pole-and-line and alternative methods. Alternative methods include: throwlines, trotlines, limb lines, bank lines, jug lines, spearfishing, snagging, snaring, gigging, grabbing, archery, and atlatl.

Conservation makes Missouri a great place to fish. For more information on state-record fish, visit the MDC website at