2023 Southwest Fish-Off
The Southwest Fish-Off had 31 participants, and 65 fish were caught in 4 hours. The species caught were white perch, channel catfish, bluegill, American eel, emerald shiner, and yellow perch. This is our first time seeing yellow perch caught from our dock and we hear from the expert anglers present that it’s a sign of improving river health!
Stephon Mumford caught the first fish of the day at 8:04 AM, and James Giles caught the last, in the final minute of the competition!
The prize for most fish caught went to Gary Thomas, who reeled in a whopping 18 fish! James Giles was the runner-up with 11 fish, followed closely by 4-year-old Nora who brought in 10!
Stephon Mumford won for biggest fish with a 24-inch catfish. Allegedly Ka-Ron Thomas caught an American eel that was “like 3 feet,” which was not measured or photographed, but earned Ka-Ron the prize for weirdest fish. Nafis Zollicoffer and Lucy Mercorella hauled in the next two largest catfish, and Lucy’s was her first ever catch!
The smallest fish, a 3.5-inch emerald shiner, was caught by the smallest angler, August.
It was a beautiful and exciting morning, and heartwarming to see experienced anglers helping first-timers to catch their first fish. We’re grateful to Coach Todd of Mid-Atlantic Youth and Outdoors Partners for coming out to help identify, measure, and release all those fish!