Genetic testing on a 12-pound lake-record bass recently caught on Lake Naconiche revealed that it was the son of a 14-pound bass caught back in 2004 on Falcon Lake, which is some 450 miles away. How is that possible? In a word: Sharelunker.

From this story in the Houston Chronicle:
In December 2004, Jerry Campos was fishing for bass on Falcon Lake in Laredo and he caught a 14-pound largemouth bass, later named the ShareLunker 370. _Nine years later, Allen Lane Kruse of Nacogdoches set a water-body and catch-and-release record for Lake Naconiche when he caught the 12.54 pound bass. DNA testing showed that the recent catch is the son of ShareLunker 370, which spawned at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center in Athens. Campos had entered his fish into a “ShareLunker” program, which allows catchers to share their prize fish with others. Fingerlings from the program that spawned have stocked into more than 60 reservoirs across Texas.
According to the story, the Lake Naconiche fish has all sorts of connections to the Texas Sharelunker program, including a father that was caught at Lake Fork in 2000, a grandmother caught from Lake Fork in 1994 and a great grandmother that came from Gibbons Creek lake way back in 1988. The Lake Naconiche record fish’s mother produced over 12,000 fingerlings that were stocked all over the state, but the fish caught at Naconiche was actually one of 173 adult bass that were released into the lake in 2009.

Pretty fascinating stuff, and a testament to how effective the ShareLunker program has been at helping turn Texas into a word-class bass-fishing destination. Does your state have a similar program?