The following claims have been ratified by the British Record Fish committee as new records:
Dean Fletcher – Carp (Cyprinus carpio) – Cranwell’s Lake, Wasing Estate, Berkshire on 13th January 2016. Dean’s claim for the capture of “The Parrot” was ratified at a weight of 68lb 1oz, beating Oz Holness’s previous record capture of “Two-Tone” by nine ounces.
Jake MacGregor – Atlantic Bonito (Sarda sarda) – Shore-caught – Hartlepool Heugh, on 4th October 2015. Jake’s fish was ratified at 3lb 8dr and supersedes Mr Blanning’s 1996 record of 2lb 10oz 5dr. Jake’s record was held over from the previous BRFC meeting for ratification pending a valid scales test.
Steve Juggins – Undulate Ray (Raja undulata) – Boat-caught – out of Weymouth, on 16th January 2016. Steve’s fish weighed 22lb 13oz, beating Mr Titt’s 1987 record (also caught off the Dorset coast) of 21lb 4oz. Steve was fishing from Lyle Stantiford’s boat, Supanova. The fish was kept alive during the day, landed in Weymouth for weighing and then taken 5 miles back to the place of capture and released alive! All credit to captor and skipper for taking the trouble to return this splendid fish to her home.
Charlie Tudball – Connemara Clingfish (Lepadogaster candolii) – Ilfracombe harbour, on 28th March 2016. England International youth team member and qualified angling coach, Charlie caught his unusual little specimen on a dropshot rig and at 10.9 grams it beats the previous record by just under one gram! Ratification of Charlie’s record is a good example of how modern technology has made the process more efficient. Charlie only received the results of his scales test on the morning of the BRFC meeting, but arranged for his Mum to photograph the claim documents and email them to the BRFC Secretary, so we were able to inspect the paperwork and accept Charlie’s record as the documents were received during the meeting!
The Committee also has one further claim pending, in respect of Adam Slack’s small-eyed ray, claimed at 15lb 11oz caught off the South Devon coast. We’re waiting for the scales test to come back.
The Committee discussed the possibility of introducing a separate record list based on length rather than weight, to provide for claims made in respect of sea fish which are either protected and may not be landed, or for sea fish caught on boats and returned alive without being landed for weighing. It was agreed that we will work towards introducing length-based lists on a staged basis, perhaps starting with a list just for those species which may not be landed, extending the scheme to other species or categories if the pilot is successful. There are various facets of this to be discussed and agreed, such as the protocol for claims and minimum initial qualifying measurements and the Committee will address these issues in due course. Length-based record lists are not intended to replace weight-based lists, but if introduced will stand along-side the traditional weight-based lists.
The Committee would like to remind anglers that in the event of the capture of a potential record fish, the captor should first contact the British Record (rod-caught) Fish Committee without delay. Captors of potential record fish should contact the Secretary, Nick Simmonds, at the Angling Trust, on 01568 620447 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org Nick will record the details of the capture and advise the claimant on progressing the claim. More information about what to do if you catch a record fish can be found in the BRFC web pages.