Anglers Break Georgia Saltwater Records

The fishing was pretty good off the Georgia coast in early May. Two Telfair County, Ga. anglers set new saltwater state records, one for a nearly 24-pound almaco jack, and one for a 30-plus-pound blackfin tuna.

Jason H. Rich, 40, of McRae-Helena, reeled in a massive 23-pound, 15.04-ounce almaco jack on May 2, while fishing offshore between the South Ledge and Navy Tower R3. This impressive catch shatters the previous record of 19 pounds, 10.53 ounces set by Hayden W. Mundy of Midway, Ga., just three months ago in March. Rich, a licensed saltwater guide, was fishing aboard his boat “Slay Ride” and used a spinning rod with a vertical jig to entice the record-breaking almaco jack.

Two days later, Molly M. Strickland, 27, of Lumber City, landed her record-setting catch on May 4. While fishing near the South Ledge, Strickland hooked a hefty 30-pound, 14.24-ounce blackfin tuna. This impressive fish ties the existing state record for blackfin, which was set back in 1999 by Penny Morgan-Turner of St. Simons Island. Strickland was fishing a daisy-chain rigged with ballyhoo aboard the vessel “Bare Down,” captained by Blake Barry.

Both fish weighed at DNR’s Coastal Regional Headquarters in Brunswick, Ga. Rich’s fish was 39.2 inches total length, 34.5 inches fork length, and 24.75 inches in girth. Strickland’s tuna was 38.6 inches total length, 33.9 inches fork length, and 25.2 inches in girth.

See all of Georgia’s saltwater records at

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