Fisherman catches record yellow perch in Lake Michigan

Fisherman catches record yellow perch in Lake Michigan
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A shore angler caught a state record yellow perch in Lake Michigan, shattering a 43-year-old record.

Blas Lara was fishing Lake Michigan in Hammond during Mayor Thomas McDermott’s Fishing Derby. He caught a 3-pound, 2-ounce yellow perch from the shore in Lake County.

It far surpassed a species state record 2-pound, 8-ounce yellow perch Roy W. Burkel Jr. caught in a gravel pit in Vigo County in 1981.

Yellow perch are native to Lake Michigan and used to be commercially caught, which fueled the popularity of lake perch at Northwest Indiana restaurants like Teibel’s, Chuck and Irene’s and the late, great Phil Smidts in Hammond.

The state banned commercial perch fishing as their numbers waned but they remain popular with fishermen because they’re easy to catch and good to eat. Perch are considered quality table fare, especially when breaded and served with liquified butter and lemon. The Indiana Department of Natural Resources said there’s still a strong fishery…

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