Chicago Sun-Times
Stray Casts will intelligently report and observe, hopefully with a touch of wit, on daily occurrences, reports and releases related to Chicago-area outdoors from bucks to bass to birds to bugs

Gar record: ``It could go either way''

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Biologist Steve Robillard took a look at an e-mailed photo of the gar caught by Charles ``Mac'' Sloan from the Kankakee just after midnight this morning and said, ``It could go either way.''

shortnose gar 8-20-2009 007

He said it is a tweener between a longnose and shortnose gar. ``I will be down there tomorrow morning with my ruler,'' Robillard said.

The fish is at Henry's Sports, Bait & Marine, where it weighed 5 pounds, 1 1/4 ounces on their certified scale, a fraction of an ounce heavier than the Illinois record for shortnose gar.

shortnose gar 8-20-2009 001

``Please God, be on my side,'' Sloan said when told what Robillard said.

It was the first gar Sloan caught. He owns Mac's Bait Shop on East 75th. He first weighed it on a digital scale at his shop at 5.24 pounds. When he realized that would be a record if a shortnose, he took it up to Henry's certified scales.

William Meyer, a well-known gar fisherman formerly from New Lenox now of Morris (ADDED), caught the Illinois shortnose gar record (5-.96) from the Vermilion River in LaSalle County on July 20, 1999.

CORRECTION: Kentuckian Nathan Merideth caught the Illinois longnose record (22-1), from the Ohio River in Massac County on May 6, 2006. That surpassed the (17-5.28) caught by Steven Ludvigsen caught from the Kankakee on July 15, 2002, which I first listed as the standing record.

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This page contains a single entry by Dale Bowman published on August 20, 2009 3:30 PM.

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