A whop­per that did not get away

Manjimup-Bridgetown Times - - Times Sport - Karen Hunt

A BRIDGETOWN boy has landed a near record-break­ing catch.

Oliver Holdsworth, 5, un­ex­pect­edly bagged the whop­per when he went down to a lo­cal fish­ing spot off Gif­ford Road, his mother Amanda Zera said.

“Oliver and his dad went down to the shire dam and Oliver threw his lit­tle line in be­cause they catch lit­tle ones there all the time,” she said.

While her fam­ily thought it might be a redfin, Rec­fish West de­vel­op­ment of­fi­cer Matthew Gil­lett on Fri­day iden­ti­fied the fish as a sil­ver perch.

The sil­ver perch is na­tive to east­ern Aus­tralia and Oliver’s 4.2kg spec­i­men was an “ex­cel­lent catch”, Mr Gil­lett said.

The Aus­tralian Anglers As­so­ci­a­tion on­line data­base, last up­dated in 2014, says the big­gest sil­ver perch on record was caught in 2009 in NSW and weighed 4.25kg.

Oliver’s fish put up quite a fight be­fore it was landed, Ms Zera said.

“The funny thing was, as Oliver was try­ing to wind it in, he was get­ting dragged in be­cause it was such a big fish and it was such a lit­tle rod.”

The fish, which mea­sured 60cm long, is now in her freezer.

“We might throw it on the bar­be­cue in sum­mer,” she said.

Mr Gil­lett said sil­ver perch were found in farm dams through the South West but not in pub­lic wa­ter­ways.

“In years to come we hope to be able to stock these types of na­tive fish in pub­lic wa­ter bod­ies to pro­vide in­creased fish­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for WA fish­ers.”

Oliver Holdsworth, 5, holds the sil­ver perch he caught last month month.

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