April 19, 2011
Take a look at Vermont’s big fish! The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department has posted a report on its website that includes some of the biggest fish caught throughout the state in 2010.
The Vermont Master Angler Program Summary, which can be viewed at www.vtfishandwildlife.com/masterangler.cfm, provides a list of all fish entered in the Master Angler Program in 2010. The report also includes interesting summaries by species, top fishing locations, preferred gear types, and other information regarding the program.
The department unveiled the new Master Angler Program in June of 2010 to promote and highlight Vermont’s diverse fish species and angling opportunities, encourage anglers and families to fish more often, promote angler learning and skill development and gather information on trophy fish catches in Vermont.
The Master Angler Program recognizes the accomplishments of anglers who catch trophy-sized fish from Vermont waters and celebrates the ability of these fish to survive and grow to such large sizes.
Jud Kratzer, one of the department fisheries biologists responsible for the development of the program, says that the program has excited many Vermont anglers.
“The inaugural year of the program was a great success,” said Kratzer. “We had a total of 200 trophy fish entries from June through the end of the year, and nearly all of the eligible species were represented. It was also great to see the many youth anglers that participated.”
The Master Angler program provides a list of 33 eligible fish species. Minimum length benchmarks are established for each species, with slightly lower minimum lengths set for youth anglers. Fish exceeding those benchmarks are considered “trophy quality” and may be entered into the program.
Anglers catching a trophy fish receive a certificate of achievement while anglers who catch trophy fish of five different species within the same calendar year are recognized as Vermont Master Anglers and receive a commemorative lapel pin at the end of the year. Eight anglers earned the Master Angler title in 2010.
“Vermont has a wealth of waters with abundant fish populations that provide many opportunities to experience outstanding fishing,” said Shawn Good, another department fisheries biologist who helped design the program.
“Many anglers focus their efforts on just one or two species,” continued Good. “They may only fish for trout or bass. We hope that by highlighting and profiling Vermont’s many opportunities to catch a wide variety of fish species, the Master Angler Program will encourage anglers to learn more about Vermont’s fish, their habits and their habitats, and then apply that knowledge to try to catch them.”
Anglers wishing to participate in the program can submit entries and upload photos online on the department’s website, or obtain a form at Fish & Wildlife offices and state fish hatcheries throughout the state. The department encourages anglers to enter online, if possible.
To learn more about the Vermont Master Angler Program and enter your catch, visit Vermont Fish and Wildlife’s website at www.vtfishandwildlife.com/masterangler.cfm.
Photo Caption: Caleb Smith (right) and his brother Zach of St. Albans, VT, proudly display their Master Angler bowfin, caught during a fishing outing with their father Chris, on Lake Champlain in July 2010. The bowfin, which measured 28 inches and weighed almost 9-lbs, is one of 33 species eligible for the Fish & Wildlife Department’s Master Angler program.
Source: Department of Fish and Wildlife
Last Updated at: April 19, 2011 07:50:43