Man snags whopping 138-pound paddlefish

By K. Butcher

Tulsa, OK (KFOR) -- A Chickasha man has a story to tell after he caught a paddlefish that almost broke the state record.

Erick Hernandez was fishing in Keystone Lake on Saturday when he landed the 138.3-pound female paddlefish.

Hernandez was guided by Jeremiah Mefford, of Reel Good Time Guide Service, who recently set the state record of 143 pounds.

A biologist with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation said since the fish was harvested, they were able to confirm it was female, however, it was loaded with fat and possibly sterile.

Rather than losing weight by generating up to 1/4 of her body weight in eggs and then spawning, sterile fish are able to convert all the energy they consume into fat and can grow quite heavy over their lifespan, wildlife officials say.

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