SOCIAL CIRCLE – Last year, more than 200 fishing enthusiasts won a Georgia Angler Award for outstanding catches and were rewarded for it. The Angler Award program recognizes those who catch fish that meet or exceed a specific weight or length for that particular species, according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Division of Wildlife Resources.
“We’ve had another great year for the Georgia Angler Award program, and we love seeing all of these great fish caught by Georgia anglers,” said Scott Robinson, Head of WRD’s Fisheries Management Section. “The Angler Award program provides multiple opportunities for recognition, including youth and adult anglers, for those who catch big bass and those who catch record fish in our public fishing areas.”
Anglers who submit a successful application receive a certificate to frame, a t-shirt and a personalized embroidered hat.
Angler Reward Opportunities:
♦ Angler Award-Adult: Anglers (aged 16+) can be rewarded for catching quality size fish (fish kept or caught with release) that reach or beat a specific weight or length .
♦ Youth Angler Award: Anglers (aged 15 and under) can be rewarded for catching quality size fish (fish kept or caught with release) that meet or exceed a weight or length specific. Note: Reduced weights and lengths for Young Angler Awards.
♦ Largemouth Bass Trophy: Recognize catches of largemouth bass weighing more than 10 pounds. Catch one that weighs over 13 pounds and get a free mount replica.
♦ PFA Record: Recognize the largest fish of each species caught and properly documented at each PFA. Species include largemouth bass, black or white crappie, bluegill, red sunfish and channel catfish.
Anglers should review all Angler Award program rules before submitting their application. Find necessary information including rules, weights/lengths, photo requirements and more at https://georgiawildlife.com/fishing/anglerawards.
Other Fishing Recognition Programs:
♦ State Records: In addition to the Angler Reward Program, the Division also maintains a Freshwater Fish State Record Program for anglers who land a catch that exceeds the existing record weight by one ounce or more. More information is available at https://georgiawildlife.com/fishing/recordprogram/rules.
♦ Kids First Fish Certificate: The division wants to reward kids statewide for catching their first fish with an online “first fish award” certificate available at https://georgiawildlife.com/my-first.
♦ Georgia Bass Slam: Recognition of anglers who catch at least five of the 10 species of black bass found in Georgia in a calendar year. More information at www.bassslam.com.
Whether asking for a fisherman’s price (by weight) or trying to certify a new state record, fish must be weighed on a scale certified accurate by the Georgia Department of Agriculture. Find a list of certified scales at https://georgiawildlife.com/fishing/angler-resources (look under “Angler Recognition Programs”). Anglers who cannot find a certified scale nearby should check with a nearby grocery or hardware store, or a local marina.
More information about the DNR Angler Awards and fishing in Georgia can be found at https://georgiawildlife.com/fishing/angler-resources.