Yeah, you read that right. New Jersey has quite the population of landlocked salmon.
Of all the places you'd expect to find a landlocked salmon, it probably wouldn't be New Jersey, right? However, for those who know, there's a booming population of these fish in several lakes, if you know where to look. As fate would have it, Runlevy Rodriquez, was at the right place on the right lake. Now it appears she's going to find herself firmly in the state record books.
New Jersey used to stock several lakes with landlocked salmon, but the entire program was abandoned 50 years ago. However, back in 2006, the program started back up again but only in Aeroflex, Lake Wawayanda and Tilcon Lake. Rodriquez was fishing on Aeroflex in about 60 feet of water when the big fish hit. Right away, she knew she had a big one.
Weighing 8.5 pounds and measuring just under 26 inches, Rodriquez's fish easily broke the previous record set in 1951 by half a pound. Even though this record is still considered pending, according to state officials, everything lines up. Now, it's just a matter of time before it's official.
Congrats, Runlevy! That's once incredible fish!