Osage County angler ties state record for skipjack herring

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) congratulates Bryant Rackers of Bonnots Mill for tying the current state record for skipjack herring. Rackers was fishing on the Osage River Oct. 27 when he caught the 3-pound fish using the pole-and-line method. The catch ties with the previous record fish, which was caught on the Missouri River Nov. 12, 2017.

Rackers is now one of four people who currently holds multiple state records. He’s also the current record holder under “alternative methods” for the blue sucker snagged in 2018.

“Well, I do hold a reputation on the Osage River,” laughed Rackers. “I do well on catching fish, and with the flooding the Osage experienced this year, it made for perfect spawning conditions.”

Rackers and his girlfriend were fishing from their boat that day and actually targeting a different species.

“At first we were down there for hybrid striper, but after awhile I said, ‘Well, let’s try for skipjack for some catfish bait.’,” recalled Rackers. “We were about done. It was the last cast of the day and I thought it was a hybrid bass that hit my lure! But as I was fighting it, I knew it was a monster skipjack.”

The fish was weighed on a certified MDC scale in Cole County.

Like his blue sucker, Rackers is planning to mount his state-record skipjack.

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

Rackers’ skipjack herring is the 11th state-record fish caught in 2019. For more information on state-record fish, visit https://short.mdc.mo.gov/Z3t