NC State Catfish Record Broken Twice

Zakk Royce is used to catching trophy catfish through his guide service on Gaston Lake in North Carolina. But no one could possibly be used to breaking the state record, much less doing it twice in a 24-hour period. But that’s exactly what Royce did on December 20 and 21 of 2015.

While fishing cut bait on 30-pound line, Royce boated a whopper on that Sunday that weighed 91 pounds. There was no biologist available on Sunday to certify it, so Royce and his father babysat the fish all night, pumping fresh water into their livewells to keep the fish alive until morning. After having the catch certified Monday morning and weighed on official scales at their local Ace Hardware store, they returned to the spot it was caught and released the fish alive.

After that they baited their hooks and wet a line again. Another fish bit and after a lengthy battle, Royce did the unthinkable by boating a 105 pound blue cat that obliterated his own record from just 30 minutes prior. So back they went to have this fish certified and their name penciled into the North Carolina state record books once again. That fish too was released alive where it was caught.

“It’s like a dream come true,” Royce told the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald. “It has always been my goal to break the state record for blue catfish, but to reach that goal and then break my own record a day later — wow, that’s all I can say.”

For more on this story, check out Royce’s Blue’s Brothers Guide Service Facebook page and this article on


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