62-year-old New York resident, Roy Isaac, has a pending record-breaking crappie that was caught on August 21 and weighs a hefty 4.42 pounds.
The fish was caught at Sleepy Hollow Lake and at first glance, a wildlife officer believed it to be a white crappie. However, samples have been taken and the species of the fish will be confirmed later this week.
Officials say, either way, it beats the current state record for a white crappie, which is 3 pounds, 13 ounces, as well as the record for a black crappie, which is 4 pounds, 1 ounce.
“My jaw dropped when I saw the crappie…I’ve never seen anything like it,’” a member of the Sleepy Hollow Lake’s management committee and longtime resident Len Greer said, according to Field & Stream.
Sleepy Hollow Lake is on a private residential community and Isaac was able to fish at it because his friend Abb lives there. He says he regularly takes his seven and 14-year-old son there to fish because there’s big fish in the lake, plus it’s safe and clean.
Isaac said he was standing on a dock on the lake where he normally fished and at first, he captured a 1 pound 7 ouncer. A few days later, he hooked a 2 pound, 10 ouncer, and then a 3 pound, 10 ouncer, and that was just a little over a week ago.
“When I caught the 3-pound, 10-ouncer, I thought ‘OK, there’s got to be a big one in here,” Isaac said. “And I kept getting them in the same spot. So, I said, ‘I’m going after [the record].’”
The fisherman said he had 4-pound-test with an ultralight panfish rod and reel combo and used a live minnow for bait. He sunk it at a depth of 25 feet before slowly bringing it up when the fish bit down.
“All of a sudden, I got a hit,” he said. “But then nothing really happened. So I started bringing the bait up. As soon as I got it closer to the shore, the fish saw me and took off. It was a good thing I had my drag set right.”
Isaac said, at first, he thought it must be a big bass fish by the strength of its tug, but when it breached the surface of the water, he saw it was a crappie.
“It was a nice fight on 4-pound-test, believe me,” he said. “That boy had been there a long time. He was so thick and so big for a crappie. To get big like that, that fish had been eating pretty good.”