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Dan Perron, a former conservation officer for the Minnesota DNR office in Onamia, spotted a 58 1/2 inch muskie, with a girth of over 25 inches, dead on July 20th. Out walleye fishing with his wife, Paula, Perron spotted the fish while cruising from one fishing spot to another. Fifty yards one way or another, Perron said, and he would have missed it. ” We were just past 4 mile,” said Perron. ” The wind was out of the south, blowing the fish out into the lake.”

The eyes and gills were still intact, leading Perron to believe the fish hadn’t been dead long. ” The teeth were ground all the way down,” said Perron. “And some of the skin was a bit flabby. It likely died of old age.” The former conservation officer and Navy man had to make a decision as to what to do with the muskie.

The former conservation officer and Navy man had to make a decision as to what to do with the muskie. “For being in that lake that long, not being caught, it deserved to be back out there,” said Perron, who said he blew his boat’s horn and saluted the fish as it floated away from his boat. A Proper burial. The fish of a lifetime-Perron said at one time it was no doubt a state record- had a head on it nine inches across.

After seeing the monster, Perron believes there’s likely another one just like it- alive and swimming in Mille Lacs–because of the amount of forage and the sheer size of the lake and areas which aren’t fished. So, for now, the state record muskie still stands at 54 pounds. That fish was 56 inches in length and had a 27.25 inch girth. It was caught on Lake Winnebigoshish in 1957.

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