Scout Trader and his family were participating in the Shooter's Choice Bowfishing Tournament on western Kentucky's Lake Barkley on July 16 when he sent an arrow through a massive bighead carp and earned the youth state record for the species, the Kentucky New Era reported.
The record-breaking carp weighed in at 61 pounds.
Once that weight was confirmed by the Bowfishing Association of America, Scout had officially taken the heaviest bighead carp ever by a bow fisherman under the age of 18 in Kentucky. His fish bested the previous state record by a whooping 20 pounds.
That's not the only record Scout broke: It is also the second largest in the category nationwide, coming in behind a carp in Tennessee that weighed in at 67 pounds. On top of that, Scout's carp is just seven pounds shy of the youth world record.
The family of fishermen, which included Trader's dad, Dustin, and his brothers, Sawyer Trader and Dalton Hearrin were using spotlights during the tournament to find the oversized carp in the shallow portions of the lake when they spotted the giant fish. Scout was hesitant but he took a shot and connected towards the tail end of the fish.
"I was just praying I would hit it and that I could get it in the boat," he said. Scout, who has been competing professionally as a bow fisherman for about a year, was in for the fight of his life. The heavy fish tried to make a run of it, but Scout held tight.
"Line was just peeling off my reel," he said. "Then I ran out and it was almost jerking me into the water. I was almost about to go in."
Because Scout had arrowed it through the tail, the fish was especially hard to pull in. He leaned on the boat railing for balance as he held tight and gave the carp time to tucker out.
Eventually, the team boated the fish, and immediately Scout's dad Dustin thought it might be a record-breaker.
"I didn't let on because we still had several hours of shooting left," he said. "I knew the previous record was about 41 or 42 pounds. This fish was way bigger than that."
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