January 2, 2007
Eric Fincher's Record Blue Catfish
NC WRC Photo
RALEIGH, N.C. – There’s a monster blue catfish out
there in Badin Lake.
Eric Fincher of Mount Pleasant knows it, because he caught and
released the record-breaking catfish, certified at 89 pounds and
four feet, four inches long, in the Stanly and Montgomery counties
“I brought him in and pretty much went into shock,” Fincher said.
“He was too big for the net, but I told my wife I had to get him in
the boat, he was a record setter. And somehow, we did.”
Unable to find certified scales that afternoon, Fincher took the
giant blue catfish to his father-in-law’s house, where he made a
makeshift holding tank by damming a nearby creek. That was Nov. 25.
On Nov. 27, certified scales were located and Lawrence Dorsey, a
fisheries biologist with the Wildlife Resources Commission, was on
hand to make things official. Fincher used an Eagle Claw medium rod
with an Abu Garcia 6500 reel, fishing a live shiner at 18 feet in a
43-foot depth, on 15-pound test line, while trolling for striped
“The next day, Nov. 28, I took him back to the lake and he swam
right off,” Fincher said. “I’m confident he’s still in there and
The previous record of 85
lbs, caught by Joel Lineberge was caught on Lake Norman,
Check out the other
To qualify for a state record, anglers must
have caught their fish on a hook and line, must have their fish
weighed on a certified scale witnessed by one observer, have the
fish positively identified by a qualified expert from the Commission
and submit an application with a full, side-view photo of the fish.
For a list of all freshwater fish state records in North Carolina,
visit the Commission’s Web site,