The Maryland Department of Natural Resources certified a new state-record Northern snakehead Friday. The fish weighed 21 pounds and was caught from a kayak by Eastern Shore resident Damien Cook. Falling into the state’s Invasive Division, this fish replaces the previous state record—a 19.9-pound snakehead taken by a bowfisherman in 2018.
Cook caught the oversized snakehead while kayak fishing a tidal river in Dorchester County on July 5. (The DNR did not name the river in a news release, but referred to the county as “one of the state’s hotspots” for snakeheads.) He was using 30-pound braid and casting an Addiction Baits chatterbait lure known as the “Cooker.”
Read Next: The Best Fishing Kayaks
“I thought it was just your average 30-inch snakehead when I first hooked the fish,” Cook told the DNR. “It pulled hard but I had the advantage of being close and I got it in the net pretty quickly.”