Satilla River Bowfin Smashes Old Record

Brad Gill | May 10, 2022

A 9-lb., 10-oz. Satilla River bowfin caught on May 1 by Layne Williams, of Blackshear, shattered the old record of a 5-lb., 1-oz. mudfish caught in 2020.

Layne said he was fishing in a kayak at the Highway 84 ramp and throwing a speciality bait he uses to catch a variety of fish.

Layne Williams with the new Satilla River bowfin record.

“I take a Beetle Spin and remove the small body of it and put on a bass worm,” said Layne. “I like a Zoom 7 1/2- to 10-inch worm. I think the fish like the flash of the spinner and the tail of the worm. I’ll crank it back or bounce it off the bottom. I’ve caught fish both ways. I’ve caught bass, bowfin, chain pickerel, warmouth, speck, all around it’ll catch whatever is biting.”

The bowfin hit the modified Beetle Spin, which on this particular afternoon was dressed with a dark blue worm with silver flake, about 4:30 p.m. Layne said he was just reeling his bait back in when he connected with the record fish.

“He bumped it once, and then before I knew it my line was going in a different direction,” said Layne. “I set the hook, and I knew I had a big one. A few moments of fighting and a swirl and I saw the size of it, and my heart started racing. I knew I had a good one.”

Layne took the fish to the WRD Fisheries Office in Waycross were it was officially weighed. 

Satilla River Records

Largemouth Bass12-lbs.Kevin Mullis03/27/2015
Striped Bass11-lbs., 9.76-ozs.John Geiger03/15/2006
Channel Catfish32-lbs., 3-ozs.James Lentz10/30/1977
Flathead Catfish45-lbs. 15-ozs.Larry Linker10/10/2018
Shellcracker1-lb.,10-ozs.Joseph Boyett05/03/1987
Chain Pickerel4-lbs., 14-ozs.Virgil Chaney1996
Redbreast1-lb., 12.32-ozs.Lester Roberts05/07/2022
Warmouth1-lb., 4.64-ozs.Michael Lott05/10/2022
Bluegill1-lb, 6.88-ozs.Gunter Thrift04/07/23
Spotted Sunfish10.08-ozs.Ron Adams05/30/2021
Black Crappie2-lbs., 1-ozs.Steven Todd02/06/24
Bowfin14-lbs., 10-ozs.Brandon Corbitt04/01/23
Longnose Gar18-lbs., 6.56-ozs.Larry Linker05/20/2021
White Catfish2-lbs., 15.52-ozs.Chris Royer12/21/15

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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