A Pamlico County angler has bragging rights to the state record for speckled trout.
The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries recently announced that it had certified a new state record speckled trout, which scientists call Cynoscion nebulosus. The fish broke a record that stood for more than 60 years.
Todd Spangler of Merritt caught the 12-pound, 8-ounce fish Feb 9 in the lower Neuse River in Pamlico County. The previous state record speckled trout weighed 12 pounds, 4 ounces and was caught off Wrightsville Beach in 1961.
The International Game Fish Association All Tackle World Record spotted seatrout stands at 17 pounds, 7 ounces, and was caught in 1995 off Ft. Pierce, Florida, the division said in the announcement.
Spangler’s fish measured 33.5 inches total length, or from the tip of the snout to the tip of the compressed tail, and had an 18-inch girth.
He caught it with a Daiwa Procyon reel and custom-built spinning rod. He used a Z-Man jerk shad soft plastic bait with a 20-pound braid.
For more information on state record fish, go to the division’s State Saltwater Records webpage or contact the North Carolina Saltwater Fishing Tournament staff at firstname.lastname@example.org.