Angler hooks apparent record spotted bass in California

The internet and social media have combined to make the world a small place. News that once took days or weeks to circle the globe now does so in seconds. So it might come as no surprise to some of you more serious bass fishermen that there might be a new world record for bass in the offing.

Word is that 33-year-old Cody Meyer, a professional bass angler from Auburn, California, recently reeled in a rather rotund spotted bass that needs only an official designation by the International Game Fish Association to assume its place as the world record for that species.

Meyer pulled the fish from New Bullards Bar Reservoir in Yuba County, north of his hometown and the same reservoir where his friend Tim Little caught the current world-record spotted bass in January 2015. Little’s fish tipped the scales at 10 pounds, 6 ounces.

On Friday, Meyer and his friend JR Wright had themselves quite a day of fishing.

“In total, our five best went for over 40 pounds,” wrote Meyer in a Facebook post.

That’s an average of at least 8 pounds per fish. But it is only one of those fish that Meyer will remember most.

“I spotted it suspended over 100 feet of water using Garmin Panoptix,” he wrote.

Panoptix is a sonar product that permits an angler to see in front of the boat rather than below or to the sides of it.

“Being able to see them out in front of us before we moved over them made it possible,” he wrote.

Meyer threw the fish an Ocho stick bait, which the fish promptly inhaled. After a bit of a scrap, Meyer found himself holding a 10-pound, 8-ounce spotted bass and perhaps a world record.


What an amazing day. I went fishing with my buddy JR Wright, and ended up catching a 10.80 spotted bass yesterday. It has the potential to be a World Record. I am really thankful that I have sponsors who make the best gear in fishing. A fish like this on light line took every bit of technology I had in the boat. I was using one of my prototype #Daiwa Tatula rods which is a signature series coming out soon, and a Daiwa Exist reel, 6-lb Seaguar Fluorocarbon Tatsu line, a @strikekinglurecompany Ocho. I spotted it suspended over 100-feet of water using Garmin Panoptix. Being able to see them out in front of us before we moved over them made it possible. In total, our best 5 went for over 40 pounds. Thanks to Tim Little the current Spotted Bass World Record holder for driving up on his day off and helping me get it weighed on a certified scale and for taking some better photos. @daiwa_usa @garminfishhunt @fishseaguar @brpevinrude @rangerboats @tacklewarehouse @tacticalbassin @topthisoutfitters @flwfishing @lunkerchasers @cudabrand @ownerhooks @simmsbass @simmsfishing @jackson.kayak @thmarineteam

A photo posted by Cody Meyer (@codymeyerangler) on


Being unfamiliar with New Bullards Bar Reservoir, I did some digging and learned that this water has given up multiple spotted bass over 8 pounds, including at least one potential world record that weighed in unofficially at 11 pounds, 4 ounces. According to FishSniffer.com, the fish was caught by a guide from Kelseyville, California, in November 2015. Rather than driving the fish 75 miles to the nearest certified scale, he chose to release the fish to fight another day.

Though New Bullards Bar Reservoir is not a Nevada fishery, it might be the destination of choice for anglers looking to catch a large spotted bass and perhaps a world record as well. Perhaps that 11-pounder is now more than 12, and California is much closer than the southern states, where spotted bass are found in waters from Texas to the Florida Panhandle.

If you decide to try to beat Meyer’s record, do your homework first. One of the first things you’ll need to know is the location of the closest certified scale so you don’t waste precious time looking for somewhere to weigh your fish. You also will want to spend time on the IGFA website and familiarize yourself with the rules of the game. That is also where you will download the official world-record application paperwork.

Know going in that the application is quite thorough. Along with the weight of your catch, be prepared to provide the fish’s measurements and detailed information about the scale, as well as a description of your tackle.

You also will be asked to provide a sample of the fishing line you used to catch the fish. For more information, see igfa.org.


Nevada Bighorns Unlimited, a Reno-based conservation organization, has added $10,000 to the reward being offered for information that will help state game wardens find those responsible for illegally shooting eight mule deer in the Spring Mountain Range near Wheeler Pass. The animals were shot over a three-week period in September and left to rot.

NBU’s contribution brings the reward to $18,000. Previously, the Operation Game Thief program and the Humane Society contributed $3,000 and $5,000.

Freelance writer Doug Nielsen is a conservation educator for the Nevada Department of Wildlife. His “In the Outdoors” column, published Thursday in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, is not affiliated with or endorsed by the NDOW. Any opinions he states in his column are his own. He can be reached at intheoutdoorslv@gmail.com.