Angler's sunfish ties Minnesota state record

The sunfish a Minnesota man caught recently has set a Minnesota record. (Minnesota DNR)

The sunfish an angler recently caught in northern Minnesota has tied a state record, according to the Minnesota DNR.

Aaron Ardoff on Sept. 18 caught a 1-pound, 12-ounce hybrid sunfish (a cross between two species of sunfish) from Green Lake in Kandiyohi County, which the Minnesota DNR has certified as tying the state's weight-based record. 

It ties a record set by a hybrid sunfish caught from the Zumbro River in 1994. 

"As soon as I started reeling, I could tell this wasn’t fighting like a pike or bass," Ardoff said, noting he was with his brother and a friend, fishing for bass and pike with a black and orange spinnerbait when the sunfish bit his lure. "When the fish got closer I could see that it was a sunfish and I started panicking! I kept telling myself to not go crazy and just get it in." 

Ardoff brought the fish to a local tackle shop, where the local fisheries supervisor identified the fish as a hybrid sunfish and witnessed it being weighed.