Angler Ices Record Rainbow in Rhody - The Fisherman

Angler Ices Record Rainbow in Rhody

Angler Zachary Taylor with his record setting Rhode Island rainbow!

Zachary Taylor took full advantage of our week of safe ice in the Ocean State back in mid-January. Heading out onto Peck Pond, one of the few ponds in the state that shares some shoreline with neighboring Connecticut, Zach began drilling holes with the hope of catching some of the trout that RI DEM had recently stocked. Walking on just 2 inches of ice and armed with a hand-auger and a jigging rod, Zach connected with the fish of a lifetime; a fat female rainbow that taped out at 29 inches with a 21-inch girth, pulled the scale down to a whopping 15 pounds, 12 ounces! Shattering the previous record of 12 pounds, 9 ounces set at Barber Pond in 2020. Taylor battled the massive fish for 30 minutes before sliding his prize through a 6-inch hole in the ice.


We contacted RI Senior Fisheries Biologist, KC Fernstrom about the catch to ask about the likely origin of the record fish, “She was likely 4 or 5 years old. At some point she jumped over into the salmon broodstock raceway. [We were aware of the fish and that she had been released, and] I was getting worried that no one was going to report her. The [record] rainbow was stocked during the fall stocking.” When asked if it was a regular thing to stock a few giant fish, KC added, “We typically stock out fish just over 1 or 2 pounds. There are always a few holdovers or escapees that don’t get stocked until the following season, but they are normally under 5 pounds. We are so glad this fish was caught and reported, it’s always a bit sad when we don’t hear about these giant fish that we occasionally stock.”


With several rounds of additional stockings conducted this winter, and at least four other fish north of six pounds landed over the past few months in the Ocean State, only time will tell if there are other behemoth trout lurking in Rhode Island waters, and it’s up to you to get out there and find that awesome fish. If you think you may have landed a record fish in Rhode Island start the process of certifying the catch by weighing the fish at one of the State’s certified weigh stations. For a list of the current state records in Rhode Island, click here.