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CATCH OF THE DAY: Sparta, Mo. fisherman snags record white sucker

MDC confirms Harvey Smith of Sparta is the third state-record holder of 2021 after snagging a...
MDC confirms Harvey Smith of Sparta is the third state-record holder of 2021 after snagging a 6-pound, 2-ounce white sucker from Roark Creek in Taney County. Pictured with Smith is Conservation Agent Jeff Harris.(KY3)
Published: Apr. 20, 2021 at 10:59 AM CDT
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SPARTA, Mo. (KY3) - A Sparta, Mo. snagged another state-record fish for the state of Missouri.

Harvey Smith snagged a white sucker fish on March 27. It weighed six-pounds, two ounces. He caught it in Roark Creek in Taney County. The previous record under for alternative methods weighed five pounds, one ounce fish. It too was snagged in Taney County.

“It’s kind of funny, because this was the first time I’d been snagging in 30 years,” laughed Smith. “My son and his best friend convinced me to go out with them and I ended up catching a state record. I’ll probably never do it again!”

Suckers are one of the dominant group of large fishes in Missouri waters. They feed mostly by sucking up material from the bottom. White suckers are found nearly statewide, but are absent from the bootheel lowlands and southeastern Ozarks.

This is the third state-record fish caught in 2021.

“I was actually going to turn the fish loose,” Smith said. “I didn’t think anything of it, but everybody stopped me saying that it was a huge fish. I guess I plan to get it mounted!”

Missouri state-record fish are recognized in two categories: pole-and-line and alternative methods. Alternative methods include: trotlines, throwlines, limb lines, bank lines, jug lines, spearfishing, snagging, snaring, gigging, grabbing, archery, and atlatl.

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