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Poplar Bluff man reels in world record spotted sucker

Tyler Goodale beat the previous world record by two pounds
Credit: Missouri Department of Conservation

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — A Butler County angler recently caught a spotted sucker that blew the world record out of the water.

On April 1, Tyler Goodale of Poplar Bluff reeled in the 5-pound, 4-ounce fish at Duck Creek Conservation Area, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) said. 

The previous official world record was a 3-pound, 5-ounce sucker caught in Tennessee in 2008.

Goodale also broke a state record that he set himself in 2014 when he caught a 3-pound, 10-ounce sucker. 

That sucker would have been the world record at the time, but he didn't submit it.

“I’ve fished for spotted sucker at Duck Creek before and have already broken a state and world record,” he said. “But I didn’t submit that entry because I knew I could catch a bigger fish! This was the catch I was waiting for so I’ll submit this one for the world record.”

As a volunteer, Goodale has spent time researching the spotted sucker with MDC. He has fished at Duck Creek for more than 30 years.

“I’ve put a lot of homework into this species and I’ve put in a lot of time,” Goodale said. “They always spawn in April and always spawn in the west side of the pool. They’re a temperamental fish and not that easy to catch. You really need to know what to look for. You only have about a five-to-ten second window once you present them with bait.”

Currently, Missouri holds at least five fishing world records, MDC said.

Goodale is going to get a fiberglass replica made, and the real fish is sitting in his freezer and will be used for research.

“I’ve got a buddy in MDC’s Fisheries division and we’re going to take a look at the fish and try to age it," Goodale said.

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