Idaho State-Record Tiger Trout Disqualified Due to Fishing License Issue

The Idaho fishing records book underwent a significant alteration when state officials were compelled to retract an angler’s record nearly six months after its certification. Unlike previous fishing-records controversies, the authenticity of Kody King’s tiger trout‘s weight was not in question, as it nearly doubled the existing record for the species. However, King’s record was invalidated due to his lack of a valid fishing license at the time of the catch.

Last spring, King landed the fish from Montpelier Reservoir, weighing 8 pounds 8 ounces on a certified scale. The Idaho Department of Fish and Game initially hailed King’s achievement, announcing his trout as a new state record, surpassing the previous record set in 2020. However, suspicions arose when discrepancies emerged in King’s account of the catch.

IDFG conservation officer Kolby White raised doubts about King’s record when inconsistencies surfaced in the timing of the catch. Despite King claiming to have caught the fish at night, the photo submitted with his record clearly depicted daylight. Further investigation revealed that King purchased a one-day, non-resident fishing license on the same day he claimed to have made the catch, around 2 p.m.

White conducted a meticulous examination, comparing the submitted photo location with his own photographs taken at various times of the day. Based on this evidence, it was evident that King’s catch occurred during the daytime. Confronted with the findings, King admitted to catching the fish and later purchasing a license.

King was subsequently charged with two misdemeanors for fishing without a license and unlawful possession of wildlife. He pleaded guilty on Oct. 25, resulting in fines and restitution totaling $983. Additionally, King faced a one-year suspension of his hunting, fishing, and trapping privileges. He also issued a public apology published in the local newspaper.

By the time King entered his guilty plea, IDFG had revoked his record, reinstating Gatlynn Mayes’ previous tiger trout record. This incident underscores the importance of adhering to fishing regulations and possessing a valid license while angling.

Fishing without a valid license can have severe consequences, as demonstrated by King’s case. It serves as a reminder to all anglers to ensure compliance with fishing regulations to avoid legal repercussions and maintain the integrity of the sport.

Image/Source: OutdoorLife

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