Florida Angler Catches Possible World-Record Pacific Snook

A Florida man caught a pending world-record 60-pound Pacific snook in Costa Rica two weeks ago.

According to, Ward Michaels, a fishing guide from Orlando, Fla., has traveled to both coasts of Costa Rica more than 80 times in the last 27 years to target snook. He planned his latest trip around March’s new moon, knowing the chances of catching big, spawning females were high.

“The new moons in March and April are when the big females stage off the beaches before they move into the rivers to spawn,” said Michaels. “Each time, everything happens in three days.”

Michaels said he caught several fish that weighed more than 30 pounds on the trip, including a 47- and 50-pound fish. He was trolling with sardines when he caught the possible world-record breaker.

“You’re always happy to get 30- to 35-pounders but to find fish of this size in one area is unbelievable,” Michaels said. “I’ll probably never see it again.

The possible world-record snook was weighed on a commercial scale that was not certified by the IGFA. But the agency allows scales checked and certified by government agencies, reports.

“I’ve been talking with the IGFA and they said there wouldn’t be a problem. People in Costa Rica are working on it,” Michaels said. “It’ll require a lot of paperwork but I’ll get it done.”

The current all-tackle record of 57 pounds, 12 ounces was set in 1991.