Catfish blues: Record catch dies in transit


KANSAS CITY, Kan. A record 124-pound blue catfish caught earlier this week by an Illinois man fishing in the Mississippi River died on its way to the Cabela's Outfitter store here, where it was to go on display.

Tim Pruitt, 33, of Godfrey, Ill., caught the world-record blue catfish early Sunday
near Alton, Ill.

The fish, measuring 58 inches long and 44 inches around, was kept alive and was to be displayed in a tank at Cabela's in Kansas City, Kan., but it died en route to the store.

"We're baffled by this," Fred Cronin, a fisheries biologist for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, told The Kansas City Star. "We took a lot of precautions to see that the fish was comfortable."

"But we're talking about a fish that was very old, very heavy," he said.

"The stress of being transported like that could have been too much."