Angler Smashes His Own Ogeechee River Channel Catfish Record

Glenn Settles has six Ogeechee River fish records.

Andrew Curtis | April 10, 2023

Glenn Settles with the new Ogeechee River channel catfish record that was certified at 29-lbs., 11-ozs.

Glenn Settles knew the process quite well when he boated a big channel catfish. He would have to get this fish to a set of registered scales, contact the WRD for species confirmation and have two unrelated witnesses who would agree to testify to what they saw. And, if at all possible, he wanted to keep this fish alive.

Living on the Ogeechee River near Statesboro, Glenn is serious about his river fishing. In fact, he holds six Ogeechee River fish records, one of which was the previous channel catfish at 23 pounds he caught in 2014. He knew immediately that this catch would easily beat his old record.

“It was March 18. I was in the boat fishing with live crawfish on bottom in a deep hole,” he said. “I was having a good day, already caught several catfish in the 4- to 5-lb. range. Then, I set the hook on one, and I thought I had a gar at first. After a minute or two, I realized I had a big catfish.”

It took Glenn 30 minutes to battle the huge fish on his Zebco 808 before he was able to hoist it into his boat.

“That fish filled up my cooler at over 36 inches in length,” he said.

Glenn made his way back to his riverfront home where he had a big aerated livewell to put the fish into.

“I hung it on some scales I had, and it read 29 1/2 pounds, but I already knew it was the record,” he said.

He drove the fish, still alive, into the town of Brooklet to Prosser’s Seafood where he had his prize catch weighed on certified scales.

“I had a crowd of people just oohing and awing over the fish, saying that they couldn’t believe a channel catfish that big came out of the river—officially 29-lbs., 11-ozs. That got me wondering how old the fish was,” Glenn said. “The WRD reckoned it was somewhere between 20 and 25 years old. I made up my mind right then that if it was at all possible, I was going to return that fish alive back to the river.”

Glenn did successfully release the record catfish back into the Ogeechee River.

“You should have seen that fish. It was just as frisky as ever. I have no doubt it survived,” he said confidently.

When asked about his other five Ogeechee River records, he informed me that his butter cat (yellow bullhead catfish) was actually the world record at the time when he caught it in 2003. It still stands as the Georgia state record.

“I got my eyes set on a couple more records on the list,” he said with a laugh. “But some of those are going to be hard to beat!”

He does know of one record that’s possible to beat. That nearly 30-lb. catfish is still swimming around the Ogeechee right now… and still growing!


Ogeechee River Record Fish

Largemouth Bass10-lbs., 14-ozs.Robert Attaway Jr.05/08/06
Striped Bass30-lbs.Ellis Arnold Phillips02/27/89
Redbreast1-lb., 5-ozs.Harley Morris06/18/98
Shellcracker2-lbs., 8-ozs.Linda Swan11/04/05
Chain Pickerel4-lbs., 15-ozs.Curt Sutton06/24/96
Channel Catfish29-lbs., 11-ozs.Glenn Settles03/18/23
Brown Bullhead4-lbs., 1.04-ozs.Glenn Settles04/06/21
Yellow Bullhead4-lbs., 15-ozs.Glenn Settles10/12/03
Hickory Shad2-lbs., 10-ozs.Timmy Woods02/20/22
American Shad3-lbs., 2.88-ozs.Jason Cone03/22/18
Bluegill1-lb., 7.04-ozs.Chance DeLoach06/30/19
Spotted Sunfish7-ozs.Glenn Settles05/23/21
Black Crappie2-lbs., 3-ozs.Glenn Settles12/11/21
Warmouth1-lb., 4-ozs.Glenn Settles06/21/22

See all of GON’s official Georgia Lake & River Records here.

Requirements For Record Fish

• Fish must be caught legally by rod and reel in a manner consistent with state game and fish regulations.

• Catch must be weighed on accurate Georgia DOA certified scales with at least two witnesses present, who must be willing to provide their names and phone numbers so they can be contacted to verify the weighing of the fish.

• Witnesses to the weighing must be at least 18 years old, and they must not be members of the angler’s immediate family nor have a close personal relationship with the angler.

• Catch must be positively identified by qualified DNR personnel.

GON’s records are compiled and maintained by GON, to be awarded at GON’s discretion. Additional steps may be required for record consideration.

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