The Missouri Department of Conservation announced recently that its archery record for black buffalo has been broken again, this time by bowfisherman Travis Cardona of Hillsboro. According to officials, Cardona was fishing on a lake near the Duck Creek Conservation area when he arrowed a behemoth fish on March 14. The black buffalo weighed about 74 pounds and was measured by wildlife officials on a certified scale.
“Believe it or not, once I shot the giant, I didn’t know it was that big of a fish until it started swimming back to the boat,” Cardona said. “Believe you me, after it swam towards the boat the fight was on. It was a five minute battle that seemed like an eternity.”
The archer said it took as many as four arrows before the fish could be hauled into the boat.
“Once my friends and I got the fish in the boat, we knew that it was a state-record fish,” Cardona said. “This is by far the biggest fish I have ever caught in my life, and I still can’t believe it!”
Black buffalo usually grow to between 10 to 30 pounds. According to the International Game Fish Association, the largest black buffalo ever caught on a line was 63 pounds and 6 ounces. That fish was taken from Iowa’s section of the Mississippi River by Jim Winters in 1999.
Cardona says that his record fish is currently in a freezer and will be prepared for mounting.
“I already have a place on the wall picked out for this once-in-a-lifetime fish. Now I’m ready to get back out on the water and try to take another giant,” he said.