Peter Schultz, second from left, and his team stand with the new state record swordfish. Photo courtesy Big Fish Classic, used with permission.
OCEAN CITY, Md. – An Anne Arundel County angler is now the first officially recognized state record holder for swordfish, which he caught in a tournament July 23 at Ocean City.
Annapolis resident Peter Schultz, 36, is the first record holder for the Atlantic division – Swordfish (Xiphias gladius). Schultz caught the 301-pound swordfish while participating in the Big Fish Classic Tournament, landing the record-breaking catch roughly 50 miles offshore at Washington Canyon.
Using a dead eel on a circle hook; 50-foot reel with 65-pound braid line; and a 25-foot, 150-pound leader, Schultz and his team reeled in the fish following an epic, eight-hour effort.
Schultz describes the swordfish as a “fish of a lifetime” and credits his team for the record catch.
“We put so much effort into this,” Schultz said “Everyone had a crucial role.”
The swordfish weight was officially certified by Dave Hedges of M.R. Ducks – Talbot Street Pier. A Maryland Department of Natural Resources biologist confirmed the catch.
The department maintains state records for sport fish in four divisions – Atlantic, Chesapeake, Nontidal, and Invasive – and awards plaques to anglers who achieve record catches. Fish caught from privately-owned, fee-fishing waters are ineligible for consideration.
Anglers who think they have a potential record catch should download and fill out the state record application and call 443-569-1381 or 410-260-8325. The department recommends the fish be immersed in ice water to preserve its weight until it can be checked, confirmed, and certified.