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How to Measure Your Fish

Fishing Regulations Icon Louisiana Fishing

Use these guidelines to measure a fish correctly (refer to Illustrations):

  1. Place the fish on its side on a flat board with the jaw closed.
  2. Total Length – Measure in a straight line from the tip of the snout to the extreme tip of the tail fin. Adjust the tail by rotating (Example 1) or by squeezing (Example 2) to obtain the maximum length of the fish (Figure 1).
  3. Fork Length – Measure in a straight line from the tip of the snout to the fork of the tail (Figure 2).
  4. Lower Jaw Fork Length – Measure in a straight line the length from the tip of the lower jaw to the fork of the tail (Figure 3).
  5. Curved Fork Length – Measure from the tip of the upper jaw to fork of tail measured along the contour of the middle of the body (Figure 4).
  6. Carcass Length – Measure the curve from posterior edge of gill opening to anterior portion of caudal keel (Figure 4).

Fish illustrations by Duane Raver