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Japanese angler breaks world record sort of
Manabu Kurita pulled in a mammoth 22-pound, 5-ounce largemouth bass in Japan on July 2, possibly tying a 77-year-old world record. - photo by Photo courtesy of
News has surfaced of a possible new world record largemouth bass that was caught in Japan.

Manabu Kurita, a 32-year-old Japanese bass fisherman, reportedly landed a largemouth bass that weighed 22 pounds, 5 ounces on July 2 at Lake Biwa.

What makes this catch interesting is that although he has submitted it to the International Gamefish Association (IGFA),  regulations for record fish weighing less than 25 pounds must weigh at least two ounces more than the existing record.

The existing record of 77 years caught by George Perry stands at 22 pounds, 4 ounces. As far as the record books go, Manubu Kurita’s catch would tie the current record if it’s certified.

I’m not sure what’s worse, catching a fish just short of a world record, or tying the current record.

Wind has made it hard on some anglers seeking out a top-water bite combined with the cooler mornings we have had lately.
Those doing well for bass are using spinnerbaits and buzz baits. With all the boat traffic recently on the Delta, most anglers have chosen to stay home. Fishing off the bank is good for catfish and panfish.

Bluegill and crappie can be found near either brush piles or docks. Try using small worms or minnows under a bobber. For catfish, any of the traditional catfish baits are working well while fished off the bottom.     

New Melones Lake
Kokanee catches continue to keep anglers busy as trout fishing has slowed down for the summer. Anglers catching kokanee are fishing the dam area and can be found between 40-50 feet deep.

Bass fishing is still good for anglers tossing rattle traps and spinnerbaits. Catfishing has really started to pick up for a lot of anglers fishing the night just about anywhere on the lake. The bluegill and panfish bite has been fair to good for those fishing the backs of brushy coves.

Lake Don Pedro
There is a good bite for largemouth bass. Dragging plastics down to 30 feet has been effective.

Most anglers searching for trout, kokanee, or salmon are heading to New Melones as the bite is wide open just a few miles away.

Lake Pardee
The summer season is a great time to fish Lake Pardee, especially for smallmouth bass.

A favorite technique on mine is the use of crickets for smallmouth bass. Fished either on the bottom or drug-in and round underwater rock piles almost always provide action.

If choosing to use artificials, the early-morning, top-water bite often is very good, and the mid-day jig bite around submersed islands is also another great choice.

Either way, Lake Pardee is a beautiful lake, which is a true fishing lake only. No personal watercrafts and body contact with the water are allowed.

Lake Camanche
The bite is really good for those fishing for bluegill and bass. Bass are being caught right now just about anywhere on the lake, with rocky points being the best spots.

Lures that are being used are spinnerbaits and crankbaits, while the bigger fish are being caught by those dragging plastics along the bottom.

Bluegills are being caught shallow by those fishing with red worms in the backs of bays.

Lake Amador
Most of the fishing is taking place during the night.

Very few anglers are fishing the lake during the daytime. Anglers are currently catching bass, catfish, crappie, bluegill, and a few trout all while fishing through the night.

Boaters Needed
On July 19, the 11th annual Conroy Oakley Pro-Teen Tournament will be held out of Russo’s Marina on Bethel Island.

The purpose of the event is to introduce teens 13 to 19 years old to fishing through a professional style tournament where they will be paired up with a boater for six hours.

Currently they are in need of more boaters for the event, boater’s fish for free, for more information call (925) 684-9775.

Tip of the Week
I’ve made the mistake more than once of overpaying for launch fees while fishing a new body of water. Most launches vary in price; it’s often worth the effort to research prices of the various launch facilities before venturing out.

To contact Jarod Ballardo, e-mail