BIG CATFISH angler Johann Troppacher encountered a multi-coloured freak of nature on the River Po in northern Italy. Check out the pictures here and video too.
The Radical and Black Cat test angler was awoken at 5.45am on a glorious summer morning by his favourite alarm clock to wake up to… his catfish alarm bells!
Fishing at a distance of around 350 metres, Johann Troppacher leapt into his boat, with his His Black Cat rod bent almost into a semi-circle.
With his bait presented against a natural bank, Johann had to prevent the fish from taking shelter in the vegetation, cranking hard on a Fin-Nor Marquesa multiplier reel.
It was a fight that would fray his nerves. Twice he had to free his line from trees.
His friend Frerk Petersen told Angler’s Mail: “At times, he could not even be sure whether there was still a fish on the line, then suddenly his rod would bend over again and it was game on!
“A mega fight ensued before the moment he will not forget in a hurry. The beast showed itself at the surface and he saw…white! He could hardly believe his eyes.
“The catfish turned away again and Johann’s nerves were finally shattered. However, a few long and anxious minutes later, his hand was at last inside the fish’s mouth.
“As its tail slid over the rail of his boat, Johann jumped for joy. A giant half white and part yellow catfish lay at his feet. The beautiful Mandarin catfish shone with shimmering colours in the morning sunrise.
“It was a freak of nature at an incredible 2.14 metres in length!”
The giant, unusually coloured catfish took a small asp on a combi rig and a 2.5-metre leader presented at a depth of four metres in a pool against a natural bank of the Po.