longnose gar
Clarion Ledger

Mississippi Fisherman Surprised with World Record Longnose Gar

Mississippi man surprised with world record longnose gar.

It's not every day one goes out fishing for one species and ends up catching a world record of another, completely by accident.

But that's exactly what happened to Southaven, Mississippi's Don Henson when a larger-than-normal longnose gar took his 3-inch shad bait.

"My bobber went under and the fight was on," Henson told the Clarion Ledger. "I thought I had the biggest catfish in the world."

Henson was fishing the Sardis Lake spillway where he regularly comes home with catfish up to 25 pounds. But it wasn't a catfish on the other end of the line. It was a 60-inch, 48-pound, 1-ounce longnose gar.

"It was a big fish and kept pulling down," Henson said. "I thought it was going to pop my line, but he didn't."

Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks verified the huge catch and certified it as a new state record. Later on it was also certified by the Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame as a new world record.

After the catch, Henson wasn't sure what to do with the monster gar and ended up doing something not too many people who catch a world record fish do. He fed it to his friends, telling the Clarion Ledger they happily devoured the giant gar.

It seems the world record was just a little too big to put on the wall at home. "My wife asked me about that," Henson told the Clarion Ledger. "I said, 'It's too big for a wall.' That's a big fish - a really big fish."

No argument there. Congrats on your record Don! And it looks like 2017 is off to a good start for record fish. Keep It here at Wide Open Spaces, where we bring you news on every record-breaking catch this year!