DEEP: Trophy Fish Award Program

Trophy Fish Award Program

The Trophy Fish Award Program recognizes and rewards angling skill.

Successful anglers will receive:

  • A certificate of merit
  • A Bronze pin for your first fish of merit
  • A Silver pin for your fifth fish of merit
  • A Gold pin for your tenth fish of merit or a new state record fish
{Connecticut Trophy Fish Award logo}
 
State Record Fish:  Defined as the largest fish (by weight determined using a certified scale) either captured legally in CT waters or landed in CT.  For all potential State Record Fish, a print-out of weight from a certified scale must accompany the affidavit.
 
 
Trophy Fish Award:  Awarded for each fish captured and appropriately submitted per affidavit requirements and species criteria listed below (weight for harvest or length for catch-and-release).
Top Angler:  Awarded to the angler who caught (during the current calendar year) the largest fish of a species listed in the minimum measurement table below (inland and marine species).
  • Male & Female  (Harvest)
  • Male & Female  (Catch & Release)
  • Youth Male & Youth Female  (Harvest)
  • Youth Male & Youth Female (Catch & Release)
Angler of the Year:  Awarded to the person who received at least 3 trophy fish awards and had the greatest number of species (diversity).  In the case of a tie, the designation goes to the angler with the greatest number (quantity of awards) within the species division (inland or marine).
Up to 8 angler of the year awards may be designated annually at the Trophy Fish Award Ceremony to:
  • Inland, Male, Adult
  • Inland, Female, Adult
  • Inland, Male, Youth
  • Inland, Female, Youth
  • Marine, Male, Adult
  • Marine, Female, Adult
  • Marine, Male, Youth
  • Marine, Female, Youth

2016 Freshwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2015 Freshwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2014 Freshwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2014 Saltwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2013 Freshwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2013 Saltwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2012 Freshwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2012 Saltwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2011 Freshwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2011 Saltwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2010 Freshwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2010 Saltwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2002-2009 Marine Fisheries Trophy Fish Program Award Summary
2009 Freshwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report
2009 Saltwater Trophy Fish Award Annual Report

General Rules for Freshwater and Saltwater fish:

  • Top Angler Awards are given to Marine and Inland anglers who catch and keep, catch and release the largest fish of each species categories.
  • Angler of the Year is awarded to the angler with the most species categories.  Awards are provided at the annual Trophy Fish Award Ceremony.
  • Youth Category is defined as anyone 15 years of age and under.
  • Saltwater entries by boats leaving and returning to Connecticut ports. No overnight stays in another state prior to day(s) of fishing.
  • Entries must be filed on the Official Affidavit Form.
  • Fish must be caught by legal methods by only one person.
  • Fish must be entered within 30 days of capture.
  • Fish caught in hatchery ponds are not eligible
  • Fish must be caught during Connecticut's legal open season
  • A clear photograph of the fish must accompany the Affidavit Form.
  • Fish can be weighed on certified scales at Connecticut bait and tackle shops, local markets, or deli's) or other state certified scales.
  • For species not listed below:  trophy fish awards subject to Fisheries staff identification and review.
  • Please Note: for all potential State Record Fish, a print-out of weight from a certified scale must accompany affidavit.

Rules for Catch-and-Release category:

  • All of the General Rules apply except that the fish do not need to be weighed.
  • A witness must be present when the fish's length is measured.
  • A Clear photo must accompany the affidavit. This photo must include the angler holding the fish and also included the fish next to a measuring (yardstick, ruler, or tape measure) device to clearly show length of fish.
  • The accompanying photo must be taken at the location where the fish was caught and released.
  • Fish cannot be taken from site and then transported back.
  • BLE = Best Length Estimate for highly migratory species.
  • Minimum Length = Tip of snout to end of tail.
  • Marlin and Swordfish - measure from lower jaw to fork in tail.
  • Shark species - minimum length is fork length.
  • Fish must be released alive.

In order to qualify for a Trophy Fish Award, the following minimum measurements are required:

Note: Minimum Lengths apply to the Catch-and-Release category only!
The minimum lengths listed below do not apply to the traditional weighed category.

Freshwater

Common
Name

Minimum
Weight

Minimum
Length

American Eel 3 pounds 35 inches
American Shad 5 pounds 25 inches
Atlantic Salmon 15 pounds 31 inches
Bluegill 12 ounces 10 inches
Bowfin
2
pounds 24 inches
Brook Trout 2 pounds 17 inches
Brown Bullhead 2 pounds 15 inches
Brown Trout 5 pounds 22 inches
Calico Bass (Black Crappie) 2 pounds 15 inches
Common Carp 20 pounds 34 inches
Chain Pickerel 5 pounds 27 inches
Channel Catfish 4 pounds 22 inches
Fallfish 1.5 pounds 14 inches
Kokanee 1.75 pounds 16 inches
Largemouth Bass 6 pounds 22 inches
Northern Pike 10 pounds 35 inches
Pumpkinseed 8 ounces 9 inches
Rainbow Trout 4 pounds 21 inches
Redbreast Sunfish 8 ounces 9 inches
Rock Bass 12 ounces 11 inches
Smallmouth Bass 4 pounds 21 inches
Sunfish Hybrids 12 ounces 10 inches
Tench
4
pounds 18 inches
Tiger Trout 2 pounds 17 inches
Walleye 5 pounds 23 inches
White Catfish 4 pounds 20 inches
White Perch 2 pounds 15 inches
White Sucker 3 pounds 15 inches
Yellow Bullhead 2 pounds 15 inches
Yellow Perch 1.5 pounds 15 inches
Saltwater

Common
Name

Minimum Minimum
 Weight      Length

Albacore
  30 lbs
 40 inches
American Eel
  3 lbs
 35 inches
Atlantic Bonito
  4 lbs
 20 inches
Atlantic Cod
  20 lbs
 40 inches
Atlantic Mackerel
   2 lbs
 14 inches
Black Sea Bass
   4 lbs
 20 inches
Blackfish (Tautog)
  8 lbs
 22 inches
Blue Marlin
  100 lbs
 BLE (99")
Blue Shark
  175 lbs
 BLE (54")
Bluefin Tuna
  400 lbs
 60 inches
Bluefish
  12 lbs
 32 inches
Cunner
  1.5 lbs
 12 inches
Dolphin Fish    45 lbs  48 inches
Hickory Shad
  1.75 lbs
 18 inches
Little Tunny (False Albacore)
 
  5 lbs
 
 24 inches
Mako Shark
  175 lbs
 BLE (54")
Oyster Toadfish
  1 lb
 10 inches
Pollock
  15 lbs
 34 inches
Sandbar (Brown)
Shark
 
prohibited
 
 prohibited
Scup (Porgy)
  2.5 lbs
 16 inches
Squid       - 10" mantle
Striped Bass
  35 lbs
 45 inches
Summer Flounder
(Fluke)
 
  6 lbs
 
 25 inches
Swordfish
  100 lbs
 BLE (47")
Thresher Shark
  200 lbs
 BLE (54")
Weakfish
  5 lbs
 24 inches
White Marlin
  80 lbs
 BLE (66")
Whiter Perch
  1.5 lbs
 14 inches
Winter Flounder
  2.5 lbs
 17 inches
Winter Skate
  10 lbs
 36 inches
Yellowfin Tuna
  150 lbs
 60 inches
Blue Crab
 8 inches
  8 inches

Trophy Fish Award Affidavit

 

Content last updated August, 2017