New North Carolina Record Cubera Snapper

A New Jersey angler claims the new Tarheel record Atlantic cubera with a 58-pound, 8-ounce giant off Hatteras.

Thomas Madsen with cubera snapper
Thomas Madsen with the new North Carolina record cubera snapper. Courtesy Thomas Madsen

Visiting angler Thomas M. Madsen of Byram, N.J. was fishing Aug. 3 with Capt. Tyler Fleetwood aboard the Hatteras-based charter boat “Sea Dream” out of Hatteras-Landing Marina when he set a new state record for Atlantic cubera snapper.

Madsen was using 80-pound test line on a Daiwa “Saltist” reel with a Shimano jigging rod when he made the catch. After a tough fight – typical of cuberas – Madsen worked the snapper near the surface where it was hauled aboard the “Sea Dream”.

The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries has certified Madsen’s catch as the new record for the state for cubera Snapper (Lutjanus cyanopterus). The fish weighed 58-pounds, 8-ounces. Madsen’s cubera measured 49.5-inches in length (from the tip of the snout to the tip of the compressed tail) and had a 41-inch girth.

Madsen’s catch tops the previous North Carolina record cubera snapper weighing 58 pounds, caught off Beaufort Inlet in 2016 by angler Randy Harmon. That fish was 39 inches in length, with a 34-inch girth, and took a Boston mackerel bait. Harmon beat his fish on 50-pound class tackle with 80-pound line.

Harmon’s record topped a 46-pound, 8-ounce cubera caught in 1993 by angler Ed Ruskowsky.

Cuberas are not frequent catches off North Carolina, so record fish often hold the state’s top spot for years. So Madsen’s 58-pound, 8-ounce new record may stay on the books for some time.

The IGFA All-Tackle World Record Atlantic cubera snapper weighed 124 pounds, 12-ounces, caught at Garden Bank, Louisiana in June, 2007 by angler Marion Rose using a Spanish sardine bait and 80-pound test Power Pro braided line.

The IGFA All-Tackle World Record Pacific cubera snapper weighed 78-pounds, 12-ounces. It was caught off Bahia Pez Vela, Costa Rica in Mar. 1988 by angler Steven Paull with a small tuna bait.

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