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18 1/2-Pound Gar Breaks Oostanaula River Record

GON Staff | April 20, 2022

A bass angler fishing from the bank on March 30 hooked and landed a 52 1/4-inch long gar that set a new record for the Oostanaula River. Joseph Agan, of Ranger, caught the new record longnose gar certified at 18-lbs., 8-ozs.

Joseph was fishing a gray ghost-colored Bandit 200 crankbait at a creek mouth on the Oostanaula near Calhoun, and he’d caught a few spotted bass and some white bass.

“The spots move in there to spawn, and I was catching a few. The spots move up pretty good by mid April, so mostly I was catching white bass—some nice ones. The whites move in first,” Joseph said.

Joseph Agan with his 18 1/2-lb. longnose gar that set an Oostanaula River record on March 30, 2022.

“I was fishing a creek mouth, and gar like to hang out at the breakline where the creeks meet the river,” Joseph said. “I was just fishing the creek, and it hit right there on the breakline. When I set the hook and came back on it, the fish didn’t move, and then I felt that big head shake and I said, ‘That ain’t no spot.’ I finally wore him out, and he didn’t put much of a fuss when I got him up.”

Joseph said he knew he had caught a big gar, but he wasn’t thinking about a potential river record at first.

Joseph mainly wanted to get his gray ghost Bandit crankbait from a tooth-filled mouth, and he ended up with a river record gar.

“I really just wanted my crankbait back. Bandit doesn’t make that gray ghost color anymore, and it’s my favorite. I sent a picture of the fish to a friend of mine who fishes the Etowah and has some river records. He told me to take it to the Calhoun Fisheries office and get it certified,” Joseph said.

Rachel Harrison’s 31-lb. Georgia State Record Gar

The previous Oostanaula River record longnose gar weighed 13-lbs., 15.2-ozs. and was caught by Alan Short in 2010. Coincidentally, Alan will be featured in the upcoming May 2022 issue of GON in a catfish article on Coosa River.

Oostanaula River Records

Striped Bass 36-lbs., 3-ozs. Phillip Lanier 04/03/2016
Flathead Catfish 37-lbs., 3-ozs. Jason Harrison 03/11/2007
Blue Catfish 40-lbs., 8-ozs. David Harrison 8/14/2003
Longnose Gar 22-lbs., 6.88-ozs. Dalton Perry 04/23/22
Largemouth 7-lbs., 5-ozs. Kyle Flanagan 04/27/2019

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