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Master and Trophy Fish Certification Minimums Lowered for Crappie

April 28, 2011

Both black crappie and white crappie sizes have been lowered for the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division’s (WFF) Master and Trophy Angler Certification program. The weight was lowered by half a pound in both categories to make certification more attainable.
 
The new minimum size for a Master Angler certified crappie is 2.5 pounds or 15 inches for black crappie; and 2.5 pounds or 16 inches for white crappie. Trophy size is now 3.5 pounds or 17 inches for black crappie; and 3.5 pounds or 18 inches for white crappie.  The standards can be met for either the fish’s weight or length.
 
The Master and Trophy Angler Certification program recognizes anglers who catch large sport fish in Alabama. Anglers might also set a state or lake record. A Master level fish is a substantial fish, while the Trophy level certification is awarded to a truly trophy-sized catch. 
 
“This program is very popular with anglers who plan to mount their fish and want to frame a nice certificate to include with the mount,” said Damon Abernethy, WFF Fisheries Development Coordinator. “It’s certainly a bragging rights deal with the anglers, but the information is also very valuable to our biologists who monitor catches of big fish in the reservoirs they manage.”
 
To be eligible for recognition, the fish must meet minimum length or weight requirements, and an application must be completed and returned within three months of the catch. Qualified anglers will receive a certificate commemorating their catch and a decal for their boat or truck. A complete list of official program sizes, an application and program rules can be found in the freshwater fishing section of www.outdooralabama.com.
 
Additionally, any angler who catches all four species of black bass (largemouth, smallmouth, spotted and redeye) will be presented a Black Bass Grand Slam plaque. Recognition for each of the species may come from the Master Angler level, the Trophy Angler level, or any combination of the two.
 
Since the program was launched in 2007, 50 anglers have been awarded Trophy level recognition and state record fish have been recorded for redbreast sunfish, black crappie, alligator gar, skipjack herring, and redfin pickerel.
 
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through five divisions:  Marine Police, Marine Resources, State Lands, State Parks, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries.  To learn more about ADCNR, visit www.outdooralabama.com .
 
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