Mako shark record sparks debate on standards at Mississippi Commission on …

View full sizeTim King of Ocean Springs set a new state conventional tackle record for Shortfin Mako with a 550-pound fish on Jan. 8. There was no previous record established. (Photo Courtesy of Mississippi Department of Marine Resources)

BILOXI, Mississippi — The presentation of state saltwater fishing records to the Mississippi Commission on Marine Resources usually draws very little comment, but a 550-pound shortfin mako shark record prompted a call for adoption of new standards for records.

Commissioner Jimmy Taylor, a charter boat operator of Harrison County, requested the state Department of Marine Resources staff looked into International Game Fish Association standards after the shark and two other records were approved at Tuesday’s commission meeting.

The shark was reported shot before it was landed on a boat.

“I fish mainly tournaments, fishing for marlin and sailfish and all the tournaments that we fish use the IGFA rules,” Taylor said. “They are the standard that is set and, I’m not making motion, but maybe adopt the rules.”

Taylor said he would like to see line class and female categories.

“I would like to see that because that is not a fish caught in a sporting manner when you shoot a fish, but it is what we have to work with now because of regulations,” Taylor said.

The new shortfin mako record holder, Tim King of Ocean Springs, was not available for comment today.

F.J. Eicke of Ocean Springs, who normally speaks for the Coastal Conservation Association said he was speaking as an individual. Eicke said it had been well publicized in the news that there was a shooting involved in the landing of the shark.

Chris Temple Record.jpgView full sizeChip Temple of Peachtree City, Ga., broke the state conventional tackle record for Bigeye Tuna with a 203-pound, 14-ounce fish on July 11, 2011. The previous record was 93 pounds, 5.6 ounces. (Submitted Photo Courtesy of Mississippi Department of Marine Resources)

Dempsey Record.jpgView full sizeThomas Dempsey of Mobile, Ala., broke the state fly fishing tackle record for Black Drum with a 58-pound fish on Dec. 24, 2011. The previous record was 41 pounds, 8 ounces. (Photo Courtesy of Mississippi Department of Marine Resources)

The shooting violates IGFA standards, he said.

“It is something the commission should think about in terms of adopting the IGFA standards because those are the world standards by which fishermen record records,” Eicke said.

Eicke suggested the commission establish record categories for youths, by gender and line class.

“Everybody likes a trophy, but that trophy has to be recognized under guidelines,” he said. “IGFA has those standards.”

The three records certified by the commission are:

• Chip Temple of Peachtree City, Ga., broke the state conventional tackle record for Bigeye Tuna with a 203-pound, 14-ounce fish on July 11, 2011. The previous record was 93 pounds, 5.6 ounces.

• Tim King of Ocean Springs set a new state conventional tackle record for Shortfin Mako with a 550-pound fish on Jan. 8. There was no previous record established.

• Thomas Dempsey of Mobile broke the state fly fishing tackle record for Black Drum with a 58-pound fish on Dec. 24, 2011. The previous record was 41 pounds, 8 ounces.

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