Eligible Species

Eligible Species

NEW RECORD BLUEMOUTH: Sue Tait from Cork with her new record of 1.32 kg taken off Caherciveen on 28th July 2008

NEW RECORD BLUEMOUTH: Sue Tait from Cork with her new record of 1.32 kg taken off Caherciveen on 28th July 2008

To make a claim for a specimen, you must have caught a fish recognised by the Irish Specimen Fish Committee which is equal to or exceeds the Specimen weight for that species. The list of eligible species is not fixed as an important function of the ISFC is to act as a focal point for data collection on the occurrence of notable, rare or unusual species taken on rod and line in Irish waters. This has led to species previously regarded as unusual being added to the list of eligible species and species suspended from the listing being returned as length based specimens.

Examples from recent years include

Bluemouth (Helicolenus dactylopterus) from 2002
Albacore tuna (Thunnus alalunga) from 2002
Golden grey mullet (Liza aurata Risso) from 2005
Gilthead bream (Sparus aurata L.) from 2006
Blackmouthed dogfish (Galeus melastomus) from 2007
Common Skate

The Irish Specimen Fish Committee recognised eligible species are divided into two different categories, Freshwater Species and Marine Species. To view The Irish Specimen Fish Committee up-to-date list (last revised 2020) of eligible Freshwater and/or Marine Species, specimen weight for that species, and Irish Record Weight of that species, click on the links below

The decision to establish a new specimen fish category is taken with due consideration of the information available to the Committee. One of the principle criteria is that the species should be captured in the ordinary course of angling. Other important factors include the numbers of the species taken over a given period, the distribution of the species and the weight of individual fish in comparison to their likely maximum achievable weight.

To begin the process of attempting to establish a new specimen fish category anglers are requested to submit a completed claim form for each fish captured. This is particularly important as it will establish a database on that species and enable further investigation and comparison of future claims. With most species the body will have to be forwarded for positive identification. Other arrangements would apply for large fish. The availability of the body is essential to allow the Committee to verify positive identification of the species. The claim form will allow monitoring of numbers and weights of the species. This facilitates assessment of the likelihood of capture, the likely specimen weight and the availability and seasonality of the species.

It is difficult to legislate for every situation that may arise but it must be stated that the final decision will rest with the Committee and will be based on a balanced review of the information available. While this process is progressing some details of interesting fish captured will be reported here and in the annual report as necessary.

SpeciesIrish Record WeightSpecimen WeightLength based SpecimenSpecies Identification reuirements
Bream (Abramis brama)6.07 kg3.402 kg7.5 lbs
Carp (Cyprinus carpio)14.24 kg5.9 kg13 lbs
Dace (Leuciscus leucisus)1 lb2 ozs0.3 kg0.66 lbsScales and Photos
Eel (Anguilla anguilla)6 lbs15 ozssuspended from listings
Gudgeon (Gobio gobio)0.035 kg0.0772≥14cm Fork LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Perch (Perca fluviatilis)5 lbs8 ozs1.2 kg2.646 lbs
Pike (Esox lucius) (Lake)42 lbs12 ozs13.608 kg30 lbs≥115cm Fork Length
Pike (Esox lucius) (River)42 lbs9.072 kg20 lbs≥100cm Fork Length
Roach (Rutilus rutilus)1.425 kg0.907 kg2 lbsScales* and Photos
Roach/Bream Hybrid7 lbs1.6 kg3.528 lbsScales* and Photos
Roach/Rudd Hybrid2.1 kg0.9 kg1.98 lbsScales* and Photos
Rudd (Scardinius erythrophthalmus)--0.9 kg1.98 lbsScales* and Photos
Rudd/Bream Hybrid7 lbs10 ozs1.2 kg2.64 lbsScales* and Photos
Tench (Tinca tinca)8.15 lbs2.722 kg6 lbs≥52cm Fork Length
Salmon (Salmo salar)57 lbs9.072 kg20 lbs≥90cm Fork LengthScales
Brown Trout (Salmo trutta) (Lake)26 lbs2 ozs4.536 kg10 lbs≥75cm Fork LengthScales
Brown Trout (Salmo trutta) (River)20 lbs2.268 kg5 lbs≥57cm Fork LengthScales
Sea Trout (Salmo trutta)16 lbs6 ozs2.722 kg6 lbs≥64cm Fork LengthScales
Slob Trout (Salmo trutta)--4.536 kg10 lbsScales
SpeciesIrish Record WeightSpecimen WeightLength Based SpecimenSpecies Identification Requirements
Angel Shark (aka Monkfish) (Squatina squatina)73 lbsNo Specimen Weight≥125cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Angler Fish (Lophius piscatorius)42.985 kg8.0 kg17.64 lbsPhotos or Body
Bass (Dicentrarchus labrax)17 lbs13 ozs4.536 kg10 lbs≥75cm Total Length
Black Sole (Solea solea)6.32 lbs0.6 kg1.32 lbs
Black Bream (Spondyliosoma cantharus)1.46 kg-0.79 kg1.75 lbs≥36cm Total LengthPhotos or Body
Bluemouth (Helicolenus dactylopterus)1.32 kg0.9 kg1.9845 lbs≥38cm Total LengthPhotos
Brill (Scophthalmus rhombus)9 lbs8 ozs1.6kg3.53 lbsPhotos or Body
Coalfish (Pollachius virens)15.1 kg6.0 kg13.23 lbs≥86cm Total LengthPhotos
Cod (Gadus morhua)42 lbs7.0 kg15.43 lbs≥88cm Total Length
Conger Eel (Conger conger)72 lbs18.144 kg40 lbs≥165cm Total Length
Dab (Limanda limanda)2 lbs5.5 ozs0.6 kg1.32 lbs≥38cm Total LengthPhotos or Body
Dogfish - Blackmouthed (Galeus melastomus)1.33 kg1.0 kg2.205 lbs≥67cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Dogfish - Lesser Spotted (Scyliorhinus caniculus)4 lbs4 ozs1.474 kg3.25 lbsPhoto on measuring mat
Dogfish - Greater Spotted (Scyliorhinus stellaris)23 lbs13 ozs7.257 kg16 lbs≥115cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Dogfish - Spur (Squalus acanthias)11.06 kg5.443 kg12 lbs≥105cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Flounder (Platichthys flesus)4.91 lbs1.1 kg2.4255 lbs≥45cm Total LengthPhotos or Body
Garfish (Belone belone)1.729 lbs1.0 kg2.205 lbs≥89cm Total LengthHead and gills
Garfish (Belone svetovidovi)1.11 lbs0.3 kg0.875 lbsHead and gills
Gilthead Bream (Sparus aurata)3.505 kg1.4 kg3.08 lbs≥42cm Total LengthPhoto (whole body, head shot showing mouth & eyes)
Gurnard - Gray (Eutrigla gurnardus)3 lbs1 ozs0.600 kg≥40cm Total LengthPhotos or Body
Gurnard - Red (Aspitrigla cuculus)3 lbs9.5 ozs0.907 kg2 lbsPhotos or Body
Gurnard - Tub (Trigla lucerna)12 lbs3.5 ozs2.0 kg4.41 lbsPhoto (pectoral fins must be fully expanded
Haddock (Melanogrammus aeglifinus)5.39 kg2.5 kg5.51 lbs≥63cm Total Length
Hake (Merluccius merluccius)25 lbs5.5 ozs2.2 kg4.85 lbs≥68cm Total Length
Halibut (Hippoglossus hippoglossus)156 lbs12 kg26.46 lbs
Herring (Clupea harengus)0.48 kg0.34 kg0.75 lbsPhotos or Body
John Dory (Zeus faber)7 lbs8 ozs1.814 kg4 lbs
Ling (Molva molva)55 lbs11.34 kg25 lbs≥125cm Total Length
Mackerel (Scomber scombrus)4 lbs2 ozs1.0 kg2.5 lbsPhotos or Body
Megrim (Lepidorhombus whiffiagonis)1.85 kg0.794 kg1.75 lbs≥49cm Total LengthPhotos or Body
Mullet - Gray, thick lipped (Chelon labrosus)9.1 lbs2.268 kg5 lbsPhotos or Body
Mullet - Golden Gray (Liza aurata)1.52 kg0.68 kg1.5 lbsPhotos or Body
Mullet - Thin Lipped (Liza ramada) 2.95 kg1.5 kg3.31 lbsPhotos or Body
Mullet - Red (Mullus surmuletus)0.82 kg0.4 kg1.0 lbsPhotos or Body
Plaice (Pleuronectes platessa)8.23 lbs1.2 kg2.65 lbs≥48cm Total Length
Pollack (Pollachius pollachius)19 lbs3 ozs5.0 kg11.02 lbs≥80cm Total LengthPhotos
Pouting (Trisopterus luscus)4 lbs13.5 ozs1.361 kg3 lbs
Ray - Blonde (Raja brachyura)37 lbs11.34 kg25 lbs≥100cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Ray - Cuckoo (Raja naevus)5 lbs11 ozs1.6 kg4.0 lbs≥63cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Ray - Electric (Torpedo nobiliana)40 kg9.072 kg20 lbsPhoto on measuring mat
Ray - Homelyn (Raja montagui)8.28 lbs2.268 kg5 lbs≥65cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Ray - Painted (Raja microocellata)17.21 lbs4.536 kg10 lbs≥80cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Ray - Sting (Dasyatis pastinaca)33.2 kg13.0 kg30 lbs≥90cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Ray - Thornback (Raja clavata)37 lbs7.0 kg17.64 lbs≥100cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Ray - Undulate (Raja undulata)18 lbsNo specimen weight≥85cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Ray's Bream (Brama brama)6 lbs4.25 ozs2.0 kg4.41 lbsPhotos or Body
Red Sea Bream (Pagellus bogaraveo)9 lbs6 ozs1.0 kg4.0 lbs
Rockling – Shore (Gaidropsarus mediterraneus)†≥30cm Total Length†Photo on measuring mat
Rockling, Three Bearded (Gaidropsarus vulgaris)3 lbs1 oz0.794 kg1.75 lbsPhotos or Body
Scad (Trachurus trachurus)1.97 lbs0.680 kg1.5 lbs≥44cm Total LengthPhotos or Body
Shad – Allis (Alosa alosa)- -1.814 kg4 lbsScales
Shad - Twaite (Alosa fallax)1.54 kg≥50cm Total LengthScales
No weight based claims, unless new record
Shark - Blue (Prionace glauca)206 lbs45.359 kg100 lbs≥185cm Fork LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Shark - Mako (Isurus oxyrinchus)- - 90.718 kg200 lbsPhoto on measuring mat
Shark - Porbeagle (Lamna nasus)365 lbsNo Specimen weight≥180cm Fork LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Shark - Six-Gilled (Hexanchus griseus)480 kg45.359 kg100 lbsPhoto on measuring mat
Shark – Thresher (Alopias vulpinus)- -54.431 kg120 lbsPhoto on measuring mat
Short Spined Sea Scorpion (Myoxocephalus scorpius)†0.26.573≥25cm Total Length†
Skate - Common (Raja batis)221 lbsNo Specimen Weight≥180cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Skate – Long Nosed (Raja oxyrinchus)--36.287 kg80 lbsPhoto on measuring mat
Skate - White (Raja alba)165 lbsNo Specimen Weight≥180cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Smooth-Hound (Mustelas asterias)11.27 kg4.5 kg9.94 lbs≥103cm Total LengthPhoto on measuring mat
Stone Basse (Polyprion americanus)11.72 lbs3.628 kg8 lbs
Tope (Galeorhinus galeus)34.02 kg8 ozs18.144 kg40 lbs≥155cm Total Length PPhoto on measuring mat
Torsk (Brosme brosme)4.858 kg2.5 kg5.51 lbsPhotos or Body
Trigger Fish (Balistes carolinensis)2.54 kg1.474 kg3.25 lbsPhoto
Tuna - Albacore (Thunnus alalunga)29.96 kg12 kg26.46 lbsPhoto
Tuna - Bluefin (Thunnus thynnus)440 kgsuspended from listings
Turbot (Scophthalmus maximus)34 lbs5 kg11.02 lbs
Whiting (Merlangius merlangus)4 lbs14.5 ozs1.361 kg3 lbs
Wrasse Ballan (Labrus bergylta)4.3 kg2.154 kg4.75 lbs≥48cm Total LengthPhoto
Wrasse – Corkwing (Symphodus melops)†0.0150.033≥24cm Total LengthPhoto
Wrasse Cuckoo (Labrus mixtus)2 lbs7 ozs0.567 kg1.25 lbs≥35cm Total LengthPhoto

Exclusion from specimen status


For conservation reasons Porbeagle have been suspended from the specimen list.

Freshwater eel:

Suspended from ISFC list of eligible species. In compliance with the CONSERVATION OF EEL FISHING BYE-LAW, eel remains suspended from the specimen list.

Common Skate:

Sharks and rays (elasmobranchs) are a group of fishes requiring special consideration. In 1976 the Committee, in the interests of conservation, decided to remove the Common Skate (Raja batis) from the list of eligible fishes and not to consider any claims whatsoever, except for a possible new record (i.e. a fish weighing in excess of 100 kg (221 lbs)). It has since been retuned to the lists as a Length Based Specimen.

Undulate Ray and Monkfish:

The plight of two further elasmobranch species, the Undulate Ray (Raja undulata) and the Monkfish (Squatina squatina), has become very serious. They are under serious threat due to commercial fishing pressure and the Committee is anxious that their situation should not be exacerbated by angling. For this reason Undulate Ray and Monkfish were removed from the list of eligible species for 2006 onwards. Claims for a new record in either species will be considered provided that the fish is weighed on shore, photographed and returned alive. This moratorium continued for two further years until December 2008 when the situation was reviewed and extended gain for over 10 years. These species were subsequently returned to the lists as Length Based Specimens.