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August 26, 2002


For more information contact:
Al Ivany at 609-984-1795

According to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection's Division of Fish and Wildlife, a new state record chub mackerel was taken off Spring Lake on June 23. Kathleen Leso of Clark caught a 1 pound, 9 ounce chub mackerel that is the first in a brand new record category.

Leso was drifting from a boat when she caught the record chub on 17-pound test line using a jelly worm lure and squid strip for bait. The fish measured 16 inches in length with an 8 7/8-inch girth.

Found from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to the Florida Keys and Cuba, the chub mackerel or "thimble-eye" is generally bluish or greenish in color with about 30 wavy black bars across its body which break into a series of dusky spots at the lateral line. There is a black spot located on the pectoral (chest) fin and the first and second dorsal (back) fins are widely separated. The entire body is scaled. Chub mackerels possess an air bladder and can grow to about 20 inches in length and weigh more than two pounds.

The Record Fish Program honors the largest species of fish caught in the State. It revolves around a specific list of eligible freshwater and saltwater species, and is based on weight alone (there are no line classes). Scale certification documentation and a weighmaster's signature are necessary. Other rules apply. For more information or to request an application, call 609-633-7768. Visit the Division's website at for a complete list of state record fish.