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For most people who catch a record fish, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime event. But Jared Holt of Homedale, Idaho has managed to beat his own catch-and-release flathead catfish record from the Snake River. Holt managed to hook a monster catfish on July 9 that measured 43 inches long, which is an inch longer than the previous record fish he caught in 2020.

Holt’s previous record-setting catch was a 42-inch long flathead catfish, which he caught in September of 2020. The record before that was caught by Scott Turner in 2018 and was 38.5 inches long.

Idaho has two types of fishing records. There are the traditional certified-weight records and then the catch-and-release records. Because the catch-and-release record fish aren’t harvested, weight doesn’t factor in. The goal is to get a measurement, get at least one photo, have a witness, and release the fish alive. The catch-and-release record program is popular with anglers. It allows them to go after trophy fish without having to harvest them. Catch-and-release record recording began in 2016 and goes by the overall length of the fish. Before that, the largest certified-weight record flathead catfish was 48-inches and 58.5 pounds caught in 1994. It was caught in Brownlee Reservoir.

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Flathead Catfish in Idaho

Flathead catfish are non-native in Idaho. They can be caught year-round and are commonly found in certain areas of the Sanke River. The fish are native to Mississippi and Gulf drainages, according to the USDA, and they are listed as an invasive species in many other regions due to the fact that they prey on native fish populations. However, at this time they don’t seem to be a major concern for wildlife managers in Idaho.