New York has landed its first fish record for 2015. The honor goes to Joshua Wegner of Bath, who reeled in a five-pound, eight-ounce white sucker from Cold Brook in Steuben County on April 14. According to the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), the fish overtook the previous state record by over five ounces.

“Under Governor Cuomo’s NY Open for Fishing and Hunting Initiative, DEC works to promote and expand access for anglers,” said DEC Commissioner Joesph Martens in a press release. “I’d like to congratulate Mr. Wegner on this new record catch and encourage all New Yorkers to continue to utilize the great natural resources and fishing opportunities the state has to offer.”

Wegner’s new record fish measured 24 inches long and was caught using a nightcrawler. White suckers, commonly known as mullet, are favored by some anglers due to their firm and delicious—if a little bony—meat. They are also a vital food source for more popular game fish such as trout, walleye, bass, northern pike, and muskie.

“White suckers can be found in a variety of habitats throughout New York State with the exception of Long Island,” the DEC stated. “Despite their widespread distribution, they’re not often targeted by anglers. White suckers are bottom dwellers, primarily feeding on insects, snails and clams. This time of year, they move up shallow, swift moving streams to spawn. White suckers often fall prey to eagles and osprey, as well as larger predatory fish.”

Image courtesy New York Department of Conservation

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