|A giant musky of almost unbelievable proportions was found floating in the St. John River in New Brunswick and is creating excitement with fishermen in that region.
The musky, which measured 50 7/8 inches long, carried a 29 3/4-inch girth and was weighed by a local conservation officer at 60.5 pounds.
“It was pulled from the water of the St. John River near Nackawic, New Brunswick, on December 14,” reports Stephen Eldridge, deputy conservation officer and forest ranger for the Province of New Brunswick. “It was floating almost lifeless, upside down. It’s caused quite a stir in our chapter membership as we can now confirm trophy potential for the St. John River.”
Eldridge, who is also chairman of the St. John River Chapter of Muskies Canada, said the musky was found by Chad Cernivz, who lives near Nackawic. “Chad contacted me because he knows I fish for muskies,” Eldridge explained.
About 24 hours passed from the time Cernivz found the musky until it was weighed by Eldridge, but the officer felt this mattered little to the musky’s weight. “The 24-hour thing had very little impact on the weight as it was packed in snow minutes after it died and when we took the pictures, it covered me in fresh slime just like it had come out of the river,” Eldridge said.
The officer said he used a Cabelas 100-pound stainless steel spring scale to weigh the musky. Though the scale is not certified, after weighing the fish he compared his scale with certified scales at the local Canada Post Office and found his scale was actually weighing light. “It is my opinion that the fish has been slightly underweighed at 60.5 pounds,” he said.
This musky is not the first New Brunswick supertanker that Eldridge knows of. In May 2005 a musky dubbed the “Oromocto Fatty” was discovered barely alive in the Oromocto River by an employee of the local Oromocto Public Works Department. When it was found the fish reportedly measured 43 inches with a 25 3/4-inch girth and weighed 39 1/2 pounds. It was then put in the deep freeze in the Department of Natural Resources regional headquarters in Kingsclear, New Brunswick.
In December 2007, Eldridge and regional fisheries biologist Pam Seymour measured the badly freezer-burned musky at 41 inches (much of the tail had broken off) with a 25 1/2-inch girth. It weighed 35.2 pounds at the time.
The Oromocto Fatty originated from the St. John River since the two meet below Fredericton, New Brunswick.
Muskies were originally stocked in Quebec’s Lac Frontiere in the 1960s and dispersed downstream throughout the St. John River system into both New Brunswick and Maine.