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Massive 122-pound catfish caught in Tennessee breaks state record

A man from Tennessee broke the blue catfish state record for a second time.

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) confirmed that Micka Burkhart, of Big Rock, Tennessee, beat his own record with a catfish that weighed at 122 pounds and three ounces.

Burkhart caught the record-breaking catfish from the Barkley Reservoir in Stewart County, and it measured 57.5 inches in length and 42.5 inches in girth, according to a press release issued on Thursday, July 13.

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The TWRA explained that Burkhart caught his latest record breaker on Wednesday, June 28, but the certification and official record process was officially completed on Tuesday, July 11.

Micka Burkhart caught a 122 pound catfish that measures 57.5-by-42.5 inches from the Barkley Reservoir in Stewart County, Tennessee. (Photo courtesy Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency)

Fox News Digital reached out to Burkhart for comment.

Burkhart’s current record catfish outweighed the 118-pound blue catfish he caught from the Barkley Reservoir in September 2022 by four pounds and three ounces, according to the TWRA.

Both of Burkhart’s record catfish were reportedly released.

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Blue catfish are a coastal and inland fish that can be found in many states throughout New England, the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries.

Micka Burkhart and two men carry his record blue catfish.

Micka Burkhart (far left) of Big Rock, Tennessee, caught his second record catfish on June 28. (Photo courtesy Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency)

The NOAA reports that blue catfish have a lifespan that’s typically between nine and 10 years, but some have lived up to 25 years.

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On average, blue catfish are less than two feet in length, though some can grow to five feet, according to the NOAA.

In terms of appearance, blue catfish are silvery-blue in color with a white belly, and they have smooth skin that lacks scales, according to the NOAA.

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The species can also be identified by their flat dorsal fins, deeply forked tails and four pairs of black whisker-like barbels around their mouths.

Micka Burkhart releases his record blue catfish.

Micka Burkhart released his 122-pound blue catfish after weighing and measuring his catch. (Photo courtesy Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency)

Blue catfish have become a popular game fish because the species has been shown to be “strong,” “savvy” and “a good challenge,” according to the NOAA.

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The world’s largest blue catfish caught on record weighed 143 pounds. It was reeled in from Kerr Lake, a reservoir in between North Carolina and Virginia, in 2011, according to records kept by the International Game Fish Association, a nonprofit organization that maintains angling records.

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