The eight-foot-long behemoth, a wels catfish pulled from the River Ebro after a 20-minute struggle, is said by Catmasters Tours to be the heaviest albino catfish ever caught on rod and reel.
The cream-colored beast, which was set free after it was weighed, was two pounds heavier than the previous record, caught and released last year in the same stretch of river by Sheila Penfold, who is blind.
Colin Bunn, a spokesman for Catmasters, said in an interview that Grimmer’s catfish was thought at first to be the same fish, “but when we checked the photos it was a different fish.”
Grimmer told the Express: “It took my reel and stripped it and it was then that I knew it was a big one. My mate went into the water to help lift it out. I was jumping down the bank when I realized it was a record.”
The International Game Fish Assn. does not keep track of “albino” catfish records, but the IGFA lists the all-tackle record for wels catfish as a 297-pound, 9-ounce specimen caught last year in Italy’s River Po.
Of the wels catfish, the IGFA website states that there are “tales of it attacking and drowning dogs and even children, but these are based on hearsay, rather than observation.”