Enormous 20-stone catfish caught with fishing rod in Italy after 40-minute boat battle

The wels catfish, which was set free, could be one of the largest ever caught

An enormous catfish weighing 20 stone has been caught in Italy using only a fishing rod.

Dino Ferrari told GrindTV that he and his brother, Dario, lured it in with artificial bait and then battled the giant fish from their small boat for 40 minutes on Thursday. After staying in the water to weigh and measure the specimen, which is one of the largest ever caught, they released it back into the river to swim another day.

Rod manufacturer Sportex Italia, which sponsors Mr Ferrari, claimed that the 2.67m wels catfish was a world record size to be caught with its Torpedo spinning rod.

Giant-fish-2.jpgIt was found in the Po Delta, which is known for having the perfect living conditions for giant wels to flourish.

According to a British wels catfish website, they have hundreds “velcro-like teeth” used to hold prey before passing food to “crushing pads” at the back of the throat.

It records the UK record dating back to 1997 as a four-and-a-half stone fish caught in Bedfordshire.

Dino Ferrari with the enormous 20 stone catfish. Picture: Sportex Italia

The enormous 20 stone catfish. Picture: Sportex Italia

The fish are not fussy eaters and have reportedly been known to feed on ducks, rats and even pigeons.