Record fish

Cody Sparkman of Perryville holds his 2-pound, 13-ounce black bullhead caught on a jugline July 21 in Perry County. Though it’s not the prettiest fish, it’s now the eighth state record caught in 2019.


Cody Sparkman of Perryville is now a state record holder.

During a recent fishing trip, Sparkman caught a 2-pound, 13-ounce black bullhead catfish on July 21 in a farm pond in Perry County using a jug line. 

The fish broke the previous state record for black bullhead catfish set by a 2-pound, 4-ounce fish caught in Cass County in 2010.

“I was out that day hoping to catch catfish and turtles,” said Sparkman. “It’s definitely something to now hold the state record.”

The fish’s weight was verified on an MDC scale in Perry County.

Sparkman's catch, made with chicken liver bait, was the eighth state-record fish caught in 2019.

Though Sparkman now holds a state record, he has some reservations about mounting his award-winning catch.

“I got to admit, it’s a pretty ugly fish,” Sparkman said. “We call them mudcats around here, but it’s a record so I’ll take it. I’m still debating on whether or not to mount it.”

Bullhead, such as black, brown, and yellow, are nongame fish and may be caught and kept. For more information on bullhead catfish, visit

Missouri state-record fish are recognized in two categories: pole-and-line and alternative methods. Alternative methods include: throwlines, trotlines, bank lines, jug lines, spearfishing, snagging, snaring, gigging, grabbing, archery, and atlatl. To learn more about state-record fish, visit the MDC website at

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