Missouri Catfish Angler Catches New State-Record Eel

The new Missouri state-record American eel weighed nearly 7 pounds.
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Carlin Allison was catfishing on the famed Current River in southeast Missouri on July 26 when he hooked into something big, strong, and somewhat unusual.

“I was using skipjack bait, and originally thought I was pulling in a catfish,” Allison told the Missouri Department of Conservation. “My buddy and I were out at about 3 a.m., so it was dark outside and I couldn’t see that well, but it put up one heck of a fight.”

Carlin Allison’s state record Missouri eel.
Missouri Department Conservation

Allison was about to cut his fishing line and let the eel go, but his fishing partner thought better of it.

“I didn’t know what to do with it, but my buddy stopped me and said, ‘Hey, that’s a big eel, hold on’,” Allison says. “Sure enough, we looked it up online and it was obvious it was bigger than what was listed [as the state-record eel by the MDC].”

The eel was weighed on certified scales in the town of Doniphan, and the 6-pound, 15-ounce…

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