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200-year-old rockfish caught in Alaska

By VERONICA LINARES, UPI.com   |   July 3, 2013 at 12:38 PM  |  Updated July 3, 2013 at 1:39 PM   |   Comments

July 3 (UPI) -- A record-breaking shortraker was hauled in near Sitka, Alaska last week.

Not only did Henry Liebman's catch beat the record for a shortraker caught on sportfishing gear with his 39.08-pound Rockfish, but a fishery expert is claiming he might've also broken the records for the oldest fish ever caught.

Liebman, who is an insurance adjuster from Seattle, said he visits Sitka frequently so he knew he had gotten a big fish as soon as he laid eyes on his catch.

“I knew it was abnormally big, [but I] didn’t know it was a record until on the way back we looked in the Alaska guide book that was on the boat,” he said.

According to a fishery biologist, Lieberman's catch might've been swimming in Sitka's coast since the time of Alexander Baranov, the first governor of Russian Alaska.

Troy Tidingco, Sitka area manager for the state Department of Fish and Game, who certified Liebman’s catch, said the fish might be around 200 years old.

Samples of the fish have been sent to a lab in Juneau to determine its actual age.

As for the actual fish, Liebman took it back to Washington where he plans to have it mounted.

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