At the recent meeting of the BRFC chaired by Mr Ken Ball, and attended by Ian Epps, National Federation of Anglers; Chris Clark, National Federation of Sea Anglers, Oliver Crimmen of the Natural History Museum, Scientific Advisor to the BRFC, the Secretary David Rowe, Apologies had been received from Nigel Hewlett Environment Agency, Marsh Pratley and  Phil Smith: Specialists Anglers Alliance.


The current claims were considered and the committee having satisfied itself that all the procedures had been met in respect to identification, witnesses to capture, weighing and the accuracy of scales used to weigh the fish, the following records were ratified and decisions made.



Species                  Weight                      Captor                 Date Caught & Location       Previous Record.

Coarse Fish            9lbs 2ozs                                           Mr Matthew                        10-Oct-06                                                8lbs 14ozs

          Chub                      (4.139kg)                 Micallef                 Stillwater near Wallingford

          (Leuciscus cephalus)                              

          Sea Fish – Boat      4lbs 9ozs                 Mr Mark                 13-Nov-05                               4lbs 6oz 8drms

          Dogfish Lesser Spotted                        (2.069kg)               Donnelly                                 Boat off Fleetwood

          (scyliorhinus canicula)                                                                                                     

          Sea Fish – Boat      39lbs 10zs 2drms    Mr Steven             30-Apr-06                                38 lbs 9oz

          Ray Blonde             (17.977kg)               Underwood           Boat off Brixham

          (Raja brachyura)      

          Sea Fish – Boat      4lbs 6ozs                 Mr Malcolm           18-Oct-05                                4 lbs 2oz 8drms

          Sole                       (1.984kg)                 Le Moignan           Off Lepe beach, Western Solent

          (Solea solea)          

          Sea Fish – Boat      15lbs 12ozs             Mr Howard            05-Mar-05                               15lbs 7ozs 2drms

          Torsk                     11drms                    Foster                   Off Mowsa, Shetland

          (Brosme brosme)     (7.163kg)

          Sea Fish – Shore    2lbs 15ozs 1drm      Lynton                  04-Aug-06                               2lbs 6ozs 9drms

          Bream – Couchs Sea                             (1.334kg)               Carre                                      Cobo Bay, Guernsey

          (Pagrus pagrus)      

          Sea Fish – Shore    66lbs                       Mr K                     06-Nov-06                               58lbs 2ozs

          Tope                       (29.937 kg)              Legge                   Lynmouth, Devon

               (Galeorhinus galus)                          

               Sea Fish – Mini Species                   3 grams                Mr Gary                                  22-Oct-05          New Species to List

          Goby-Sand                                           Miller                     Herne Bay Beach

          (Pomatoschistus minutus)

          Sea Fish – Mini Species                        3ozs 10drms         Mr R                                       06-Oct-05          3ozs 8drms (100g)

          Wrasse – Goldsinney                             (102grams)            Prosser                                  Weymouth from Boat

          (Ctenolabrus rupestris)                                                                                                     



In respect of these decisions the following should be noted:-



1/  Chub Record Claim:- The committee were made aware that there had been some speculation and statements made in the press about the weight of a fish caught in a stillwater and claimed by Mr Mark Micallef as a new coarse fish record for the Chub claimed at 9lb 4oz.


The committee on investigation had been advised that it was impossible to calculate the weight of a fish from photographs, although there were various scientific data and programmes for estimating the weight of a species, it would not be possible to make an accurate prediction.  In addition it was recognised on advice that a fish caught in a stillwater will be a different shape to that caught in running water, the muscles would have developed differently.


The committee, after careful consideration unanimously agreed that all the procedures in respect of Identification by the Scientific Adviser, the accuracy of the scales, the witness to capture and weighing had all been faithfully observed therefore the record was ratified.


It should be noted that although it was an unanimous decision of all the members at the meeting, two members who were aware of the evidence, had expressed concerns which had been recorded in the angling press, but the committee had to consider the claim on the evidence produced and this met the criteria as laid down in the procedures developed over almost 50 years.


2/  The decision on a claim by Mr P Kingsbury for a new coarse fish record for the Grass Carp for a fish weighing 44lbs 13oz 12drms caught at Horton Church Lake was deferred pending the examination of the evidence by the BRFC Freshwater Group.  This claim would be progressed as soon as possible.


3/   DNA Testing:- The members received an update on the investigations in respect of using DNA as a method of identifying certain species and were very positive about the value that DNA testing could add to the validity of coarse fish records. The report of the investigations was awaiting completion and the Freshwater Group would meet again as soon as the results were available.




The Committee is scheduled to meet again in  March,  depending on the completed claims received.