November 2007

You, Too, Can Become Part Of Arizona’s Fishing History

Submit Your Entry For ‘Big Fish Of The Year’Award

Would you like to become an official part of Arizona’s fishing history? Now is your chance.

Although the Arizona Game and Fish Department has 33 eligible “Big Fish of the Year” species, only 12 of those species have contenders so far this year.

To see the current list of top contenders so far, visit the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Web site at

For instance, there are no Big Fish of the Year contenders yet for such popular species as rainbow trout, bluegill, black crappie, green sunfish, brook trout, and walleye. There are also plenty of opportunities for catch-and-release records as well.

“This is really a great chance for young anglers to experience the thrill of getting into the record books,” says Kirk Young, the acting fisheries chief. “The details on how to submit entries are all spelled out in our fishing regulation booklets.”

The “2007-2008 Fishing Regulations” on pages 36-37 provide details on how to submit big fish entries. There is even an entry form there. You can also download a PDF copy of the regulations (or just those two pages) from the department’s Web site.

The basic procedure is to have the fish weighed on a certified “fair trade scale” in pounds, measure its length, and take its picture. In addition, the identification of the species must be verified by a member of the Arizona Game and Fish Department (either in person or via the picture).

By the way, the current fishing regulations (page 37) also provide locations of 26 certified weighing scales across the state.

The Game and Fish Department awards a “Big Fish of The Year” certificate and recognition for the largest fish of each species caught during the calendar year. Awards are given for catch-and-keep, in which the fish is weighed, and catch-and-release, where the fish is measured and quickly released.

“Give it a try. You might just become a part of Arizona fishing history,” Young said.