DORCHESTER COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — A Dorchester County man has set a new state fishing record, Chesapeake Bay Division, for sheepshead.
Daniel Mastronardi, Jr. caught the 14.1-pound record-breaking fish around noon on Aug. 9 in the lower bay. He used peeler crab for bait in about 15 feet of water.
Mastronardi’s catch breaks the previous 13.73-pound record set three years ago by Deale resident Dave Alveberg.
The 33-year-old said he was targeting speckled trout and striped bass when he made the catch unexpectedly.
“I really had no idea what I had on the line,” he said.
Once he reeled in his catch, he called his father to check the current state records.
“It really was one of the biggest I’ve ever seen,” Mastronardi said.
He plans to mount his catch for display.
The sheepshead’s weight was confirmed by Mark Cropper of Kool Ice and Seafood Company in Cambridge.
Anglers who think they have a potential record catch should download and fill out the state record application and call 443-569-1381 or 410-260-8325. The department recommends the fish be immersed in ice water to preserve its weight until it can be checked, confirmed, and certified.