Anglers caught two absolute monster drums, the bigger one unofficially smashing the current world-record mark at an estimated 122 pounds.
Adam Kirby is a well-known South Carolina chef. Former Governor Nikki Haley appointed him the 2017 Chef Ambassador for South Carolina. However, Kirby's background is just an interesting side story to this tale of a potential world record.
Kirby and two friends, Alistair Bremner and Jim Maass, were fishing near Georgetown and had had a pretty good day until the weather got rough. But before they called it a day, they decided to try one more spot near some jetties they had fished before.
On his first cast, Kirby hooked and landed a black drum the men estimated to be around 110 pounds. They used a weight estimation system developed by the Department of Natural Resources because their on-board scales maxed out at 60 pounds. The formula is girth times girth times length divided by 800.
They decided to keep fishing, and around 40 minutes later, Bremner became the star as he hooked into an even bigger drum. Using the same formula, they estimated this fish to be around 122 pounds, which would've effectively made it the new world record, beating the standing record of 113 pounds by 9 pounds.
"You're not ever gonna catch one of those and especially not gonna catch two of them in a day, so it was really cool," Kirby said. "It puts you up on the board with all those guys catching big fish, no doubt about it."
South Carolina forbids anglers from keeping fish outside of 14-27 inches, even to be officially weighed. The anglers safely released the big drum back into the water. The state DNR estimated the fish to be between 60 and 80 years old.
Kirby indicated that the men are still trying to get official recognition from the International Game Fish Association. They took video of them measuring the fish and hope it'll be enough to confirm the record.
"It's fun to be able to go out there and catch those things and release them and fish for another day," he said. "Hopefully, I'll be able to catch that fish again one day."
Here's a video from Kirby's Facebook page of one of the big drum catches:
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