Bob Williams documented the first TrophyCatch Hall of Fame bass, with this 13 lb., 14 oz. largemouth successfully caught and released on Rodman Reservoir. Photo by guide Sean Rush.
Florida’s newest angler recognition program TrophyCatch provides valuable rewards to anglers who document and release largemouth bass over eight pounds. Bass caught from any public and private waters within Florida are eligible. Go to TrophyCatchFlorida.com for details on how to register and submit your catches. While you don’t have to register before you catch a trophy bass, visiting the website is a great way to learn how to submit your trophy bass catches to earn rewards.
TrophyCatch Reward Levels
33 Freshwater Fishes
The “Big Catch” Angler Recognition Program rewards anglers who catch a memorable-sized fish. Big Catch includes 33 species of freshwater fishes. Pages 16–17 illustrate the species included and qualifying sizes. Anglers receive a colorful citation and their photo will be posted on the website.
An angler catching five “Big” fish of the same species will be recognized as a “Specialist,” fish of five different species makes a “Master Angler,” and 10 different species an “Elite Angler.” A youth citation is given to an angler under age 16 for catching slightly smaller fish (see MyFWC.com/BigCatch, for specific sizes).
Also available are several challenging “Slam” certificates: “Bass Slam” (for catching a largemouth bass, spotted bass, shoal bass, and Suwannee bass within one year); “Bream Slam” (for catching any four of bluegill, redear sunfish, spotted sunfish, warmouth, redbreast sunfish, or flier in one day), and a unique south Florida “Exotic Slam” (for catching a butterfly peacock, Mayan cichlid, and oscar in one day).
33 Freshwater Fishes
To be listed as a state record, there are several requirements. The same 33 species recognized as Big Catch are eligible. Pages 16–17 illustrate the species and state record as of May 2013. First, the fish must be weighed on a certified scale. Second, the fish must be identified to species by an FWC biologist. Third, the fish must have been legally caught by a licensed, or legally exempt, angler in waters where access and fishing gear were legal.
If you catch a possible state record call your nearest regional office.
Regulations in red are new this year.
Purple text indicates an important note.