Millsboro angler lands state-record kingfish

August 17, 2023

A Millsboro angler has become the kingfish king of Delaware’s Atlantic waters by catching a 52-pound, 11.2-ounce king mackerel, also known as a kingfish, in late July along Fenwick Shoal. Jeff McCoy landed the new state-record king mackerel fishing from his 25-foot boat the Reel McCoy out of Indian River Marina in Delaware Seashore State Park.

“To be honest, it was one of those cases of pure luck – well, not pure luck, but like the old saying goes, ‘I’d rather be lucky than good almost any day,’ and that was one of those days,” said McCoy.

His king mackerel, with a 56-inch fork length and 24-inch girth, bested the previous Delaware record, which stood for more than 31 years, by a stunning 4 pounds, 2.2 ounces. 

McCoy’s catch was certified as a state record by Delaware Natural Resources Police Fish and Wildlife Cpl. Kyle Wharton at Hook ‘em & Cook ‘em Bait, Tackle and Seafood on the Indian River Inlet. Aboard the center console Reel McCoy with him that day were his wife, Jen McCoy, and his mother- and father-in-law, Lynda and Dennis Boas, and brother-in-law, Jeff Boas. 

McCoy had intended to fish for sharks that day, and once his family fishing party reached Fenwick Shoal, he put in play some studious preparation and execution of strategy for catching a big gamefish – just not that gamefish. At one point, after the king mackerel made a 15-minute run, McCoy said his fishing line wrapped around the boat’s anchor rope. Quick action by his brother-in-law disentangled McCoy’s fishing line, and the fight was on again, with the kingfish making several more runs. Eventually McCoy gained the upper hand and was able to maneuver the fish alongside Reel McCoy, where it was landed with another assist from his brother-in-law. 

Delaware Sport Fishing Tournament state records can be found at


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