The whole situation regarding record fish or the claimed weights of some fish seen in the press is a joke. I am not saying everyone is a liar, although sometimes that is true, what I am saying is that mistaken identity, inaccurate scales, inaccurate weighing method etc etc all add up to this type of problem.
For "everyday" fish I dont think it really matters?if a guy wants add a couple of pounds to his personnel bests then thats his business as he is only cheating himself. However where I do object is when it comes to records. These are a historical fact and should not be messed with. Some time back I believe it was necessary to have the body of the fish dead or alive to claim a record...I seem to remember the previous record Roach of 4.1 being killed to claim the record!
Now obviously this was a ridiculous situation and had to stop BUT it did mean we avoided identification/misweighing issues. The claiming method was then changed to witness/photo etc but this brings with it uncertainty of the true nature of the record.
I think one way round it is to have designated trained people around the country who MUST be called out to witness a potential record fish. Although it would not completely foolproof I think it would stop 95% of these type of problems.
You could just see this was going to happen... One of the papers gets wind of the fact it was rumoured to be a grass carp - fairly likely on the face of it looking at the first pic I saw (tiny eye set forward on head etc...). The other one stuck to its guns and ran an exclusive around some other expert's claim it was a chub.
Not sure how it is lately done here with government resources stretched to the limit but here goes my previous experiences.
To claim any record the angler must bring the fish allive to the registered and authorized weigh-in stations. These include some Police stations, post offices, ministry of water affair offices and more. The fish is officially weighed after proof of Identity and Angling license as well as membership to the Angling Association of SA. After relevant photos the fish is taken to be correctly classifeid and inspected to see if someone did not perhaps drop a weight down its trough to add a couple of grams. You might laugh but it did happen. Afterwards it is released unharmed at an undisclosed venue in the same river system or dam. A bit of a hassle and very resource intensive but it helped. Dont know if all this still aplies but would be great if it did. Included is also rules that state the angler must have landed it without support, i.e he may not pass the rod to any bystander at any stage during the catch. To much red tape but it keeps the records trustworthy. Well by the way I am off for a 4 day trip to the Vaal. Will give you feedback in 3 weeks when I get back. No hempseed, tough. Still tied up in customs. But then again I can always contact a friend of a friend's cousin who has a friend for the real thing huh. Just kidding, enjoy and have fun see yah in 3 weeks.
I know that hybred fish can cause problems, even for the experts, but to confuse the Chub with a Grassie is a bit rich isn't it?,
Maybe if it had been a Chub Grassie cross then you couls see that there might be a problem, but you only have to look at the mouth!!!!!!!!!!!!!