PA fisherman catches ‘river monster’ catfish in WV waters

West Virginia

A Pennsylvania fisherman recently caught a huge catfish that would have shattered the record in his home state. However, Joe Granata, of Monaca, Pa., caught the flathead in a section of the Ohio River that happened to be across the West Virginia line.

Granata caught the 64 lb., 8 oz. fish on September 24. The Pennsylvania record for flathead catfish is a 56 lb., 3 oz. fish, caught in the Schuylkill River, in Philadelphia, in 2020. The West Virginia record jumps up quite a bit to 70 lbs, caught in 1956 in the Little Kanawha River.

The excitement of Granata’s catch can be seen on his YouTube channel. The video show’s Granata’s rod bend over as the fish takes the bait. Then the fight to get the beast in the boat is on. Granata and his friends weigh and measure the fish and give it some time in the boat’s live well to recover, before he released it back into the river, joking about keeping it as a pet as he let it go.

Granata has caught some other big fish, but this one was his personal best by eight pounds, he says on the video.

“I’m pretty pumped man. I’ve spent a lot of time out on the river. That’s the biggest flathead I’ve ever seen, let alone caught. Absolute giant, fish of a lifetime,” Granata said.

In addition to nearly 9,000 views on YouTube, Granata has also been featured in a number of newspapers, on local TV newscasts and, most recently, in Field & Stream magazine.

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