Art Weston recently caught several massive smallmouth buffalo on ultralight tackle—and likely set some new International Gamefish Association (IGFA) Line Class Records in the process. 

Weston, who’s from Kentucky, went fishing in Texas with Austin Anderson, the owner and operator of  CarpPro Texas Guide Service, on December 16 and 17. In recent years, Anderson has become renowned as one of the best guides for bigmouth buffalo, an often overlooked native species that looks similar to a carp. In 2022, Field & Stream reported on a 60-pound behemoth that Anderson caught and released. 

Early in the trip, Anderson started putting Weston onto big fish. Weston is well-known for chasing IGFA records, mostly line class records. Earlier in 2023, he managed to break the IGFA All-Tackle World Record for alligator gar with a 283-pound monster

Fishing with Anderson December 16, Weston caught a potential IGFA Line Class world record for 6-pound test with a 22-pound, 6-ouncer. Later that day, he followed it up with a potential 2-pound test record with a 19-pound smallmouth buffalo. The next day, he beat his own potential 2-pound test record with a 27-pounder—perhaps the most impressive catch of the trip. 

To bring to hand such a big fish with such light fishing line, Anderson and Weston decided to fish from a boat to prevent line from snagging. They also used a small hook that didn’t require much force on the hookset. 

When the fish bit, “I picked up the rod and began to apply slow but steady pressure, using only about 1 pound of drag on the reel,” Weston told Fox News. “One trick I learned [from] fishing light line is that you want a reel that has a low maximum drag setting, which relates to a smoother fight when only using a small amount of drag… After many long runs, this particular buffalo came to the surface and Austin was ready with the net and was able to land it on the first try.”

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Weston followed up the impressive catch later that day with another jumbo smallmouth buffalo—this time a 26-pounder on 4-pound test that could also set a new line class world record. All of the fish were weighed and released. The IGFA has not yet certified any of the records. According to the record-keeping organization, Weston has set 59 world records in his lifetime, 37 of which still stand.