Check out the new rainbow trout record breaker in Oklahoma, an impressive fish with an interesting story.
The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation just officially certified a new state record rainbow trout, caught by Paul Glover of Sallisaw on April 4, 2015 on the Lower Illinois River.
The record rainbow weighed 11 pounds, 4.32 ounces, measured 29 3/16 inches in length and 16 9/16 inches in girth. Sallisaw used a micro-jig that he tied himself.
The previous record was 10 pounds, 10.56 ounces and was caught in 2013.
“Unfortunately, I didn’t get to fish very long because it was the second fish I caught,” Glover said in a Tulsa News piece shortly after catching it. “I didn’t know what to do with it. I haven’t kept a trout in years. I normally let them go, but this looked like a state record, so I decided to keep it.”
Glover said he’s enjoyed fly fishing on the Lower Illinois for the past 25 years. Officials suspected that an extraordinarily large fish was accidentally stocked into the stream sometime last year. Jim Burroughs, streams supervisor for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation, said a hatchery truck had several jumbo fish bound for a private fishery that were mixed in with the usual batch for the state.
“If I recall correctly, they thought they could separate them out, but there was one they couldn’t find,” Burroughs said.
When biologists saw it leave the stocking tube at the river, they were pretty confident it was the last remaining large fish.
“I’m fairly certain it’s the same fish,” Burroughs said. “We’ve had a lot of reports from people who thought they hooked it but it broke off.”
It would seem likely that the extra large fish, which was never supposed to be in the Illinois River, is the same one that will put Sallisaw in the record books.