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OMG This thing is ENORMOUS! LOL!

In what has been called a "localized phenomenon," South Carolina's Santee Cooper Diversion Canal produced back-to-back all-tackle world records in 1998 for redear sunfish, known regionally as "shellcrackers." On November 6, 1998, Amos M. Gay (above), a retired trucker from Georgia, landed a 5 lb. 7'/2 oz. shellcracker that now stands as the world record for this species and as the line-class record for 8-pound test. Gay beat the previous all tackle record set on June 18, 1998, by Raymond Lee, a South Carolinian who caught a 5 lb. 5 oz. fish in the same water. State fisheries biologists said increases in high-quality food, mainly clams, over several seasons resulted in fast, sizable growth of the shellcrackers. Gay's fish was eight-years old, but good forage, not longevity, led to the world-record size, biologists said

Article courtesy of Outdoor Life (1998)
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