19 lbs. 5oz Northern SnakeheadNEW WORLD RECORD caught May 15, 2018

As I was texting with Emanuel Tankersley congratulating him on his world record and explaining why I haven’t texted him any new photos of my own this season (wine wine wine..)  So far I have only hit the water 3 afternoons as of writing this and been skunked each time!  I know life gets in  the way but I’m really getting itchy for fishin’.  I haven’t landed anything yet just some misses from nice but average snakeheads and a few bass.  Wind, timing and bad luck for me good luck for the snakeheads though (LOL), have all put me behind this year.   In addition to Emanuel I have run into a few other hardcore snakehead hunters on the water who have put 20-30 fish in the boat or kayak  since April 20th (it was too cold for me back then).  So far this season some nice fish have been landed around 12 lbs. but mostly 4-8 lb. fish seem to be being caught so far according to most reports.  Well a I guess the “big” fish have come out to play as of this last week!

What  a great story to start my snakehead fishing, seasonal blog off with.   You read correctly, Emanuel who you seen on my blog in photos from last year where he had over 20 BIG snakeheads all  34+” and 15 lbs.!  Here he is last summer (2017) with one of those 20 fish, a 16 pounder measuring in at 37″.  We weighed it on my hand scale at 9:30 PM on the shore in the dark with no flashlight. Cellphone light.

16l lb snakehead
Emanuel a Stafford Cnty with one of his 16lb, 37″ snakeheads from 2016

Now he has the NEW WORLD RECORD FOR THE LARGEST NORTHERN SNAKEHEAD caught on rod and reel.  His fish even beats the Maryland bowfisherman, Emory Baldwin, III that stuck an 18.42 lbs. snakehead last year.

18.42 lb snakehead
Emory Baldwin “Dutch” with his 18.42 lb. Northern Snakehead that he shot with his bow on the Potomac River on May 26, 2016

Now IFGA does not consider bow fishing, fishing they are strictly rod and reel catches so on “world record” for him.  He was cruising the Maryland side of the Potomac River by Mattawoman Creek.  He was sailing up the river on the Maryland side by what is called the “Flats”just a few hundred yards north of where Mattawoman Creek starts.  He does hold the Maryland snakehead record as they count bow fishing and rod & reel fishing equally.  Not my idea of fishing but that’s how they do it in Maryland.   Don’t get me wrong I love bow  “fishing” I just don’t consider it “fishing”, it’s more like “fish hunting” and shooting.  But back to topic, sorry to digress.

Emanuel caught on rod and reel a 19Lb. 5 oz Northern Snakehead(Channa Argus) that measured 36.5″ long!  WOW…WOW… is all I have to say.  I am ahead of the IGFA as I write and post this blog as the previous record holder, Louis Aragon is still listed with his 17 lb. 12 oz whopper form Quantico Creek, on the IGFA website(click the Louis’s name and follow the link).

Luis Aragon 17 lb 12 oz Offical World Record Northern Snakehead Caugth May 2014

But Emanuel has turned in his paperwork last week to the IGFA (International Game Fish Association) and is waiting to be recognized and receive his place in the record books and the official certificate.

Emanuel and I fish together in kayaks on the the lower creeks off the Potomac where he caught this monster.  We don’t hang out and plan to fish together we just paddle into each other on the water since we are there so much.  So I was honored when he texted me the photo and the news.  Like I said we don’t arrange to meet and hang out we just both happen to paddle the same creeks and have become casual fishing friends always talking when we see each other.  I wrote about him last year as he had a great year with some big fish.  So when he landed this monster snakehead last week he texted the photo to me right away!  Bragging rights and all.  I am very grateful for him sharing this with me as one of the first ones to announce his success to the world, blogging about it here with his blessings.

So down to the meat and potatoes of the situation

He fishes from a sit-inside, 12′ Pungo kayak not a sit on- top model.  The water is 1′-3′  deep, mud bottom as most of the wide creeks that feed the Potomac are.  He works the lilies just  off the bank out 200 yards in this shallow water creek which is about 1/2  mile across!  Soon it like all the creeks that feed the Potomac River will be choked with hydrilla (no hydrilla yet of course) and the snakehead fishing really heats up then!

He uses a 6’6″ – 7′ medium heavy baitcasting set up with an upper end reel, sorry forgot the brand.  Your basic heavy cover bass rig with 50lb braid.

Lure of choice is a Top Water 4″ Scum Frog, black/dark green twitched through the lilies or a Ribbits 4″ soft plastic frog.  Reeled slowly between the weeks with the occasional twitch…then hold when the water explodes!  I can only imagine what it looked like when that Moby Dick of a snakehead nailed his frog!

Well that’s all for now from me, I gotta get my new camera on my kayak and get some footage for you folks!  So check back for some videos and photos over the summer months and subscribe to my Youtube Channel as well by clicking here.   See you on the water.


Dr. Demetrios Kydonieus, “Snakehead Hunter”


For natural therapies for severe diseases contact me in Ruckersville, Virginia or check out my webpage for more details.


  1. In MD.& De. Do you still have to let dnr that your got on and where at. I was told last yr or so when I got one in Laurel de.pond..on a 4’white shad. Man what I hit and fight loved it u till I seen what it it was. Them I was like WTH. Now what do I do. Lol.i did t eat it. But now I hear so much on ppl are eating them left and right.

    1. Sorry for the late reply. Yes you can eat them the best eating fish sea or fresh water and one of the cleanest fish in the river not much pollution in their meat very safe according to fishery biologists. Much more pollution in cats, rockfish and bass than snakeheads! You do not have to report anything to the Fish and Game commissions any more. In Virginia you can release them alive where you caught them. In Maryland I believe you are supposed to kill them and not release them but this may have changed so check. In all states you cannot transport a live snakehead after you catch it so kill it or release it. They don’t want people releasing them into other bodies of water, although many people have done so illegally.

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