Friday, Nov 6–State Record Tilefish Caught

…Record Tile is Sixth of Year

OCEAN CITY- Another state fishing record fell late last month when angler Steve Doctor and the crew aboard the “Angler” landed a 62-pound golden tilefish during a three-day excursion, tumbling the sixth state record off the coast of the resort this season.

When Doctor and the crew aboard the “Angler” with Captain Chris Mizurak and mate Dean Lo set out in late October for a three-day late season trip including, obviously, two overnighters, they didn’t anticipate returning with a new state record for a rarely targeted species caught off the coast of the resort. The crew had caught some tuna, a couple of sharks and a few other species when they decided to go deep and re-rig for tilefish.

A short time later, Doctor had reeled in a massive 62-pound golden tilefish, toppling a state record set back in May 2007 by Captain Ron Callis, who landed the previous record, a 59.2-pounder caught in the Poor Man’s Canyon.

“It took a strip of mackerel and was caught in about 125 fathoms in the Baltimore Canyon,” said Mizurak. “These fish live in very deep water and after fishing all day, we decided to drop down deep to see what we could catch. We’ve caught them before in the 40-50-pound range, but this was the biggest any of us had ever caught.”

It remains to be seen if the 62-pound tilefish caught by Doctor, which was confirmed as a new state record this week, will top the existing world record, but there is a 63-pound-plus tile currently under review by the International Game Fishing Association (IGFA), the sport’s governing body and record keeper.

“The world record was also 59.2-pounds, but there was a 63-plus pounder caught up north in July and the paperwork on that one is still going through IGFA,” said Mizurak. “IFGA said we will know in the next couple of weeks if the 63-pounder will stand or not.”

World record or not, the big 62-pound tile caught by Doctor and the crew on the “Angler” continued a remarkable run for new state records set in the waters off the coast of Ocean City this summer, which now stands at six. The previous high for new state records occurred in 2004 when four new state records on the Atlantic side were set during the same year. Three state records were set in 1974 and two occurred in same year at different times over the last few decades.

The amazing 2009 run started back in June when two state records were set two days apart. Angler Jim Hughes and the crew on the “Nontypical” with Captain Terry Layton continued a red-hot summer with a massive 876-pound mako caught during the 29th Ocean City Shark Tournament that set a new state record.

Hughes and the “Nontypical” team caught the behemoth on Saturday of the shark tournament just outside the Poor Man’s Canyon in about 500 fathoms. When the beast was hoisted on the scale at the Ocean City Fishing Center, it weighed in at 876-pounds, topping the old state record that had stood for 25 years. Angler Frank Gaither held the old record with a 766-pound mako caught way back in 1984.

Another impressive catch and new state record was recorded the night before by an angler and boat not fishing in the Ocean City Shark Tournament. Around 8:30 p.m. on Friday, June 19, angler Brent Applegit of Boulder, Colorado, fishing aboard the “Toy Boy,” arrived at the scale with a massive 642-pound thresher shark. The huge thresher tipped the scales at 642-pounds, topping the old record of 613 pounds set by angler Don Lorden back in 2003. For Applegit, the record-breaking thresher was the first shark he ever caught.

The run of new state records during the summer of 2009 continued in July when angler Chris Toner, fishing aboard the “Fish Finder” with Captain Mark Sampson, caught the new state record cobia, a 71-pounder taken in about 12 fathoms near the Great Gull Reef on Saturday, July 25. The cobia topped the existing record, a 67-pounder, caught by local angler Mike Horsey on July 18, 2007.

The White Marlin Open has produced its share of record-breaking fish over the years, but the 2009 event was certainly one for the books. On Wednesday of Marlin Week, two new Maryland state records were broken including a massive 1,062-pound blue marlin and a 254-pound scalloped hammerhead shark. When angler Bob Ferris and the crew aboard the “No Problem” pulled into the marina at Harbour Island with the tail of a monster blue marlin hanging out of the stern, the big crowd sensed it was about to see something special.

When the fish was hauled out of the cockpit of the “No Problem” and hoisted up the scale, it topped out at an amazing 1,062 pounds, upending a WMO and state record that had stood for 20 years. Dr. Jim Daniel, fishing aboard the aptly named “Memory Maker” with Captain Marty Moran set the previous tournament and state record back in 1989 with an amazing 942-pound blue marlin that stood the test of time for two decades. Almost lost among the hoopla surrounding the new record blue marlin was another state record caught on the same day during the 2009 WMO. Angler Jamie Gill, fishing about the “Lisa,” landed a 254-pound scalloped hammerhead shark on Wednesday of Marlin Week, which took the top spot in the shark category. It was later determined the hammerhead, caught by Gill at Massey’s Canyon was also a new state record for the species, topping the old record by 60 pounds.