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Record-Breaking 'Frankenfish' Hooked In Virginia

First Posted: 08/08/13 EDT Updated: 08/08/13 EDT

A Virginia man has reportedly broken two world records with a massive "Frankenfish" he caught in June.

According to the Free Lance-Star, 27-year-old plumber and fishing enthusiast Caleb Newton, of Spotsylvania County, caught the 17-pound, 6-ounce northern snakehead during a fishing tournament in northern Virginia.

The International Game Fish Association has confirmed that Newton has broken two world records -- both the all-tackle record for the northern snakehead and the record for the 20-pound line class -- with the gargantuan snakehead, also known as a "Frankenfish," the report notes.

"His record has been approved and we'll be sending the certificate later this week, or early next week," Jack Vitek, world-record coordinator for the association, told the Lance-Star this week.

An earlier AP report notes that Newton's record catch "beat a snakehead caught in Japan in 2004 by 2 ounces."

"He has said it only took him about a minute to get it into the boat, and the 3-foot long fish barely fit into his cooler," the report adds.

Explaining the fish's freaky name, Mother Nature Network writes:

Although the term frankenfish may seem derogatory, the comparison to novelist Mary Shelley's grotesque creature created by Victor Frankenstein doesn't come without reason. The northern snakehead is a huge carnivorous predator with razor sharp teeth, that can breathe air and survive for up to four days out of water. Oh, and it "walks" across land by wriggling its body across the ground, allowing it to gain even further access to new [ecosystems]. It has no predators (except for fisherman like Caleb Newton).

Native to Asia, the "Frankenfish" is regarded as one of the most invasive species in the United States.