Nearly half a million striped bass caught on Lake Texoma since December
Seven-year-old Wake Richardson caught a 20 pound striped bass Friday morning, but he says catching big fish comes as no surprise to him.
"I was thinking 'how crazy was that?' I'm so proud," said Wake.
After a few minutes of battling with the striped bass, Wake was able to reel in the biggest catch of his life so far.
"Really excited because I kinda thought it would be a big one," he said.
Striper Express owner Chris Carey was the guide that helped Wake catch the monster bass, he says its the biggest fish he's seen someone catch with him in July.
"Man, it was like chaos. As soon as that fish grabbed his jig, all heck broke loose. Its really impressive to see a seven-year-old handle a fish like that," said Carey.
Biologists with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation and Texas Parks and Wildlife began an angler "creel" survey in December.
They say it will help biologists better manage the Lake Texoma fishery, because it gives them data about the health and size of the fish and how many are left after a big fishing season like this.
"But the creel survey was to show the economic impact the lake has on the area. But half a million striper caught in six months? Totally believe it. This lake is a fish factory. One of the few lakes where the striped bass actually reproduce," said Carey.
Over the six months, biologists interviewed 483 fisherman, and estimate those fisherman caught nearly 430,000 striped bass.
"We've had high waters for several years in a row, which creates a high number of fish," said Carey
Wake says when he goes back to school next month, he'll have something to brag about.
"I'm known for catching big fish," said Wake.