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For Immediate Release - April, 2006

"Modern Day Muskellunge World Record Keeping Program" (MDMWRP)

We are beginning a new chapter in muskellunge history; that of establishing a highly verified International program for keeping muskellunge, and tiger “hybrid” muskellunge, modern day world records. Due to problems with regard to historical muskellunge records, and due also to the fact that some current record keeping rules preclude several legal, legitimate and often used methods of angling employed by today’s muskellunge anglers. It has been decided to begin a "Modern Day Muskellunge World Record Keeping Program." This is in no way intended to be derogatory to the other record keeping programs, but rather a program designed for today’s muskellunge anglers, by today’s muskellunge anglers, to keep verified, credible and obtainable records for our favorite species and hybrid. 


An old angling cliché says; “There is no faster way to be called a liar than to claim you just caught a record fish,” and that is certainly true, for the history of fish records is replete with false claims, distortions, lots of unverified assumptions and indeed even some fraud.


All-tackle records for top game fish like muskellunge, smallmouth bass, walleye and largemouth bass have at one time or another been under a cloud of suspicion. Some have even been repudiated and disqualified. In the case of many old record fish, photo’s and mounts themselves, never did, or no longer exist. Also, the scales used usually were not verified by today’s standards. Even testimonies about the catch by other individuals regarding the length, girth, weight, etc. can be under suspicion.


The problem of these old or even some more recent day records is that none have been tested utilizing the great technology available to us today. For example electrophoresis can tell you many things about the origins of the fish. DNA also is a tool that didn’t exist that many years ago. All this being said, does not make any or all of these old records false. The problem is that many can not be verified by modern technology, and that’s the crux of the problem.


By establishing a new set of standards which are verifiable, all questions, problems and arguments that arise because of the lack of verification evaporate!


These old unverified records need not be lost to posterity. They indeed can go into a special category of “Historical and Legendary” fish. 


Many very high profile and well respected members of the muskellunge community, from both sides of the United States and Canadian border, have signed on to be a part of the Committee that has developed and will oversee this program. The Committee will consist of both a "working group" and an "advisory review group." All will review potential record applications.


Our Committee consists of: 

  • Peter J. Barber - Past Treasurer, Muskie’s, Inc. International 

  • Joe Bucher - Editor Emeritus Musky Hunter Magazine & Legendary Hall of Fame Muskie Angler; 

  • Steve Budnik - Past President and Research Committee Chairman, Muskie’s, Inc. International, 

  • Jim Bunch - Chairman, Muskie’s, Inc. Members Only Fishing Contest & Muskie magazine “Lunge Log” Editor; 

  • John Casselman, Ph. d. - Adjunct Professor, Queen’s University, Department of Biology, Senior Scientist Emeritus Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources Applied Research and Development Branch, Member Muskie’s, Inc. & Muskies Canada 

  • Rich Delaney - President World Muskie Alliance & Member Muskie’s, Inc.; 

  • Terrie DuBe’ - Past Muskie’s, Inc. International Secretary & Professional Muskie Tournament Angler; 

  • Brad Latvaitis - American Fisheries Society (AFS) Fisheries Professional Emeritus; Owner, Environmental Solution Professionals; Enshrined, Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame 2006; Muskie Historian & Researcher; Contributing writer Musky Hunter magazine; 

  • Mike Lazarus - Member Muskies Canada & Ontario and Quebec Muskie Guide; 

  • Ron Lindner - Publisher Emeritus In-Fisherman Communications Network; Member Lindner Media Group & Hall of Fame Angler; 

  • Pete Maina - General Manager/Co-owner Esox Angler magazine; Contributor Wisconsin Sportsman magazine & member Muskie’s, Inc.;

  • Bruce Michael - Business Development & Website entrepreneur responsible for multiple Muskie and Fishing related ventures. Lifelong Muskie Fisherman & Marketing Director for the MDMWRP.

  • Jerry Newman - Founder World Record Muskie Alliance (WRMA now WMA); Member Muskie’s, Inc. & Muskies Canada 

  • Steve Pallo - Management Programs Section Head Illinois Department of Natural Resources (Ret.)- Fisheries, American Fisheries Society (AFS), Certified Fisheries Scientist, Past Director-Research Muskie’s, Inc. International, Past Chair AFS Esocid Technical Committee, Life Member of Muskie’s, Inc., Co-Chair of Fisheries Habitat Committee Muskie’s, Inc.; 

  • Gord Pyzer - Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (Ret.) Kenora, Fishing Editor, Outdoor Canada Magazine, Field Editor, In-Fisherman Magazine and Television Co-Host, The Real Fishing Radio Show, President, Canadian Angling Adventures Ltd. & Outdoor Editor/Columnist, the Kenora Daily Miner and News, the Fort Frances Times, Just Fishing and Grainews and multiple award winning Journalist< 

  • Larry Ramsell, Chairman - Former Research Editor Musky Hunter magazine, Muskie Historian, Dual Hall of Fame Muskie Angler, Past President, Muskie’s, Inc. International, Former Representative International Game Fish Association (IGFA), Former World Secretary National Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame (NFWFHF) & Former World Record Advisor NFWFHF (Resigned); 

  • Steve Sarley - Host of CLTV's "The Great Outdoors" television program - 2002 to 2005, Host of "The Outdoors Experience" radio program on Chicago's NewsTalk 560-AM WIND – 2003 to present, Weekly columnist for Shaw Newspaper's "Northwest Herald," "Kane County Chronicle," and other Shaw daily newspapers, Monthly columnist for "MidWest Outdoors magazine" - 1996 to present; 

  • Tim Simonson - Fisheries/Lake Sampling Coordinator, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources WDNR) Spokesman & Co-chair State Musky Committee, Wisconsin DNR; 

  • Marc Thorpe - Past President Muskies Canada & Ontario and Quebec Muskie Guide; 

  • Diana Worline - Former Member Muskie’s, Inc. International Board of Directors & Professional Muskie Tournament Angler;

  • Steve Worrall - Owner Muskie First Internet Website & Member Muskie’s, Inc. 

The “bar" has been “set” at 60 pounds (27.22 kilograms) minimum for initial muskellunge application, to prevent numbers of large muskellunge from being kept "just to set a record." Hybrid minimum for application is 40 pounds (18.14 kilograms), since the two largest verified hybrids caught in the past 55 years were 40 pounds and 40 pounds 2 ounces. With these weight criteria, few fish will be ever be kept for record purposes. This new beginning will constitute a highly credible “International” program with realistic and obtainable minimums as a starting point, and very credible, but attainable records once they are established.


After a presentation to the International Board of Director’s of Muskie's, Inc. on April 1, 2006, the Muskie’s, Inc. International Board of Director’s voted overwhelmingly to endorse and support this program.


The committee will proceed based on the overwhelming International support that we now have, and we would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone in advance for their support and cooperation in the establishment of this great new muskellunge world record program. We sincerely believe that “its time has come,” and that with this great International mix of committee members from both the angling and scientific world of the muskellunge, it will be welcomed and accepted by the world’s muskellunge anglers!


For more information, Contact: Steve Worrall, MDMWRP Public Relations Director: email or


Larry Ramsell, MDMWRP Committee Chairman, 9407 N Highline Road, Hayward, WI 54843. Phone: 715-634-9882 or email:

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