The waters of southwestern Pennsylvania has plenty of monsters below the surface, and bowfisherman Jordan Miller managed to arrow one on a fishing trip late last month. Miller, who runs Nocturnal Addiction Bowfishing, stunned his fellow anglers when he shot a massive 49-pound, 7-ounce common carp in the Youghiogheny Reservoir.
“One of the best trips I’ve had,” an elated Miller wrote on Facebook. “It wasn’t about quantity it was about the quality!! We shot some monsters!!! The fish keep getting bigger!!”
Not just bigger, but record sized. Miller told the Observer-Reporter that the large common carp easily snagged the state record. Not bad for a fishing guide who just recently opened his own business serving southwestern Pennsylvania. Nocturnal Addiction Bowfishing covers the Monongahela River, Ohio River, and Pymatuning Lake among others. Miller, an avid fisherman, said that he had been thinking about starting his own bowfishing guide service for years now, and he officially incorporated the company earlier this year.
“It truly is fun,” Miller told the Observer-Reporter. “You get a completely different perspective fishing from the boat at night than people do fishing from the bank. You see a lot of different wildlife and when the water is clear, you can see six feet or more down. You’ll see gar, beavers, all kinds of animal life.”
Clients are provided with bows and all the necessary equipment they need for bowfishing, as well as a spot on Miller’s custom 20-foot boat with an elevated shooting platform, high-powered lights, and powered by a 2014 115hp Mercury outboard. The fish taken during these excursions are either kept or recycled. Most carp species are not considered great table fare by anglers, and common carp—especially large specimens—are no exception. Anglers typically donate these fish to be used as pet food or as fertilizer.
“I did fillet the channel cat to eat, all the carp with the exception of the big carp are donated to a local wild animal rehabilitation center where they are fed to animal,” Miller wrote on Facebook. “We do not waste any fish. As far as the big girl….. Call me crazy but she has a date with a taxidermist.”
Not a lot of people would consider mounting a carp, but a state record deserves an exception. Plus, having it be the first thing that prospective clients see can’t hurt business any either. Miller adds that he has been bowfishing for about 10 years prior to arrowing his first record carp.