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Latest Bites - May 2018
FAMILY FISHING DAY - May 12, 2018
Family Fishing Day - Saturday, May 12, 2018:   No fishing license or trout and salmon stamp are needed to fish on CT FAMILY FISHING DAY - May 12, 2018.  This a great opportunity to take your whole family on a fishing trip.


Learn to Fish - FREE!   DEEP Fisheries offers basic introduction to fishing classes all across Connecticut.  Our classes, taught by state certified instructors, will give you the skills and confidence to take advantage of the great fishing CT has to offer.  Start your lifetime of family memories at one of our courses! A full COURSE SCHEDULE with location details and registration information is updated regularly, so check back often!

Weekly Fishing Reports - get the latest on what's hot and what's not served directly to your finger tips.  Opt-In at DEEP Newsletter Subscriptions.

Family Fishing Day Events
Family Fishing Day is Saturday, May 12, 2018.  On May 12, 2018 everyone can fish without needing to have a fishing license (including a trout and salmon stamp).   The following are some family friendly fishing events near you on May 12, 2018:

Wallingford/North Haven:  Join DEEP at our annual Family Fishing Day. This year we will be at Wharton Brook State Park, Wallingford (see details in panel below or at the No Child Left Inside webpage).

Wilton: Family Fishing Clinic & Kids Trout Stocking from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Join expert anglers from the Mianus Chapter of Trout Unlimited for a free, fun, Family Fishing Clinic & Kids Trout Stocking from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Merwin Meadows Park in Wilton.

Perfect for anglers of all ages and skill levels, there will also be a special Youth Fishing section with both fly rods and spinning rods to help children under 16 learn to fish at their own pace.

Whether you are a beginner, have never held a fly rod, or are an experienced angler, you're sure to learn from our expert angling instructors. Along with casting lessons and knot tying instruction, there will be demonstrations and hands-on activities - including how to read and fish the Norwalk River and what bugs live in the river that trout feed on.

The state's stocking truck will be arriving at around 9:30 a.m. with trout for kids to stock in the river, so bring your kids of all ages for a fun treat - and bring a 5-gallon bucket if you have it! (And yes, everyone can go fishing for the trout after the trout have had an hour or two to acclimate to the river!)

A free barbecue lunch will be provided at 12 p.m. and all guests are free to fish the river after lunch. Details online at www.mianustu.org 

Meriden: Mirror Lake, Hubbard Park, Meriden, CT- Carl D'Addaraio Children's Fishing Derby.   The annual children's fishing event sponsored by the Meriden Rod and Gun Club and the City of Meriden with prizes in various age groups for biggest fish and most fish caught. Each child also gets a free hotdog and soft drink. Some of the top prizes include bicycles. This event is held rain or shine and registration begins at 9:00 a.m. and the derby starts at 10:00 a.m. and ends at 12:00 noon. For more information, contact Mike Roberts at michaelroberts@mindspring.com   

Waterbury:  City of Waterbury's Family Fishing Day, Naugatuck River, Platts Mill Road, Waterbury.   Please join Mayor O'Leary as we kick off "The Year of the Naugatuck River" with a free Family Fishing Day. "Casting for Kids" in partnership with Fishing Northeast, will be giving away fishing rods and tackles boxes to the first 100 youth in attendance. The Naugatuck River Revival Group will be providing information and educating attendees of their ongoing efforts to revitalize the Naugatuck River. Food vendors will also be available. 

Please register each attendee at www.waterburyct.org/familyfishingday  For more information, please contact the Citizens Service Center at 203-597-3444.
DEEP's Annual Family Fishing Day Event
Join us once again for our annual Family Fishing Day at Wharton Brook State Park, Wallingford/North Haven.  We will be stocking trout at 11:00 am so come early and stay all day.  We will have fishing poles and bait for you to borrow and as it is FREE FISHING DAY, you do not need a fishing license or trout and salmon stamp to fish.  See you there!!
Summer Flounder (Fluke) Season Opens May 4th
Summer Flounder (Fluke) are one of Connecticut's favorite marine species.  A very tasty fish, fluke can be caught using a variety of baits including squid strips, sandworms, and an angler favorite, Sea Robin belly strips (Sea Robin are very tasty as well).  

Most anglers prefer to drift fish for fluke but anglers routinely catch fluke from shore, especially at one of the Enhanced Shoreline Fishing Opportunity locations.  At these locations the minimum size is 17 inches, two inches less than all other locations.  Regardless of where you fish, the daily limit is 4 fish per angler per day.  The season is open from May 4, 2018 until September 30, 2018.
Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Council Modifies Black Sea Bass Regulations for CT in 2018

The Black Sea Bass regulations for CT have been modified based on action on May 3, 2018 by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission's (ASMFC) Interstate Fisheries Management Program Policy Board, and Summer Flounder, Scup and Black Sea Bass Management Board wherein 2018 recreational measures for the Northern Region states of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut and New York were revised. 
 
Connecticut's new Black Sea Bass regulations will be in place when the Black Sea Bass season opens on May 19, 2018.  The regulations for 2018 will be as follows:

General Anglers- 15 inch  minimum  length.  Five fish per day from May 19 -December 31, 2018.  

Party/Charter Boats - 15 inch minimum length.  Five fish per day from May 19 - August 31, 2018; then 7 fish per day from September 1 - December 31, 2018.

For more information please read the press release from the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission.
2018 Youth Fishing Passports Available NOW!
The Youth Fishing Passport program (FREE) is your ticket to great family memories.  Check out the two activities, the Fishing Challenge and Geo-Catching as well as the list of sponsors who graciously support our young anglers with discounts and/or free items.  Renew or join today using DEEP's sportsmen licensing system!
Youth Fishing Passport
New Inland Fishing Regulations for 2018

Farmington River:  A small portion of the West Branch Farmington River in the Riverton area (from the intersection of Hogback Road and Route 20 downstream to the gas pipeline crossing)  is closed to all fishing from April 1 until 6:00 am on Opening Day.

Mill River (Fairfield):  The Mill River Wild Trout Management Area (Class 1) is now extended downstream to the crossing with the Merritt Parkway.  The Mill River TMA below this crossing is now catch-and-release year round.

Catfish Daily Limits:  There is now a 6 fish per day limit on Channel Catfish and White Catfish in aggregate.  There is a 3 fish per day limit in places where the Fisheries Division stocks adult Channel Catfish.   Previously there was no daily limit. 

Common Carp:  There is now a daily limit of 5 fish per day with no more than 1 fish over 30 inches in length, except in the NEW Trophy Common Carp Waters.   Previously there was no daily limit or size limit.

Trophy Carp:  Several waters are now designated as "Trophy Carp Waters" with a 1 fish per day limit and a MAXIMUM size of 26 inches (all fish over 26 inches must be released without avoidable injury).  Previously there were no Trophy Carp Waters.

Atlantic Salmon Broodstock Areas:  The period when broodstock salmon gear restrictions (see Angler's Guide) are effective has been extended one month and is now September 1 to March 31 (inclusive). These gear restrictions apply to all angling for any species within the designated areas.

Tenkara Fishing:  Tenkara fishing is now allowed in all fly fishing areas.

Alexander Lake:   Is now open to fishing year round.

Pasture Pond (Quinebaug Hatchery Pond):    Is now designated as a Trout Park.

Baldwins Pond and Green Falls Reservoir:   Now open to fishing from 6:00 am on the Second Saturday of April through the last day of February.

Trout and Salmon Stamp:  See special section below.
New Marine Fishing Regulations for 2018

Black Sea Bass:  Details available online.  General Anglers15 inch minimum  length.  Five fish per day May 19 -December 31.  

Party/Charter Boats - 15 inch minimum length.  Five fish per day from May 19 - August 31; then 7 fish per day from September 1 - December 31.

Porgy "Scup":  New - 9 inch minimum length except at Enhanced Opportunity Shoreline Locations  where the minimum length is 8 inches . Daily limit remains 30 per person.
 
Summer Flounder (Fluke): New the daily creel limit everywhere is 4 fish
and the season has changed to  May 4 - September 30.  Minimum lengths  remain the same as they were in 2017, 1 9 inches everywhere except at Enhanced Opportunity Shoreline Locations where the minimum length is 17 inches.


 
Blackfish (Tautog): New3 fish per day creel limit during October 10 to November 28.  No change to the size of 16 inches for any season and no change in the daily limit for the Spring and Summer Seasons.

The NEW Trout and Salmon Stamp
With approval by the Legislative Regulations Review Committee on February 27, 2018, Connecticut now has a Trout and Salmon Stamp.  100% of the money invested in this stamp is guaranteed to support fisheries programs.  Please visit our FAQ page or email deep.inland.fisheries@ct.gov with questions.  A summary is provided below.

Anyone age 16 or older including everyone who is age 65 or older who chooses to do one or both of the following must purchase a trout and salmon stamp:

1. FISH in one of the following areas:  Trout Park, Trout Management Area, Wild Trout Management Area, or a Broodstock Atlantic Salmon Area.

2. HARVEST (keep) trout, Kokanee Salmon, or Atlantic Salmon anywhere in the state (except for waters stocked at no expense to the state).

The fee is $5.00 for age 18 and older and $3.00 for those 16-17.  The stamp is good for the calendar year (expires on December 31).

The Trout and Salmon Stamp will print on your fishing license as an additional privilege.
Interactive Trout Stocking Map
Find the trout!  Our interactive trout stocking map is updated daily as we stock (waters that are closed until Opening Day are not updated until a few days prior to Opening Day).  Find out when your favorite spot was stocked or use the map to find some NEW favorites.  
This Month's Mystery Fish
Email your guess to DEEP.inland.fisheries@ct.gov 
All Things Fishing 
We have fishing covered in the new "Connecticut is Fishy" application. Within a 60 minute drive you can be fly fishing the famed Housatonic River or Farmington River, catching monster Northern Pike in Bantam Lake, jumbo Common Carp from the Connecticut River, or on Long Island Sound fishing for tasty favorites like fluke, porgy, sea bass, and bluefish.
The "Connecticut is Fishy" application is a cross between an atlas, our Angler's Guide, our fishing web pages, and interactive maps. We know you will be hooked.
Mystery Fish Revealed
Last month's  Mystery Fish  was the Hickory Shad (Alosa mediocris).  This member of the shad and herring family has a regular presence in many of our tidal rivers.  Hickory shad feed primarily on small fish like menhaden, silversides, and others and as such, are great sport on light tackle.  There is some great fishing at the DEEP dock in Old Lyme and in Old Saybrook when the Hickory Shad are around.   If you have never fished for these feisty herring, it is well worth the time.
Join Us on FishBrain

We are pleased to be on FishBrain, the most popular social media app for anglers. FishBrain is a free download for iphone and android. Users take advantage of the free angling support features (or elect to subscribe for premium features).  Follow CTDEEPFish and we will follow you back!

 
License Fees Fund Hunting and Fishing Programs

100%  of the fees collected from the sale of hunting and fishing licenses, tags, permits, and stamps goes to support fish and wildlife conservation, preservation, and recreation programs administered by the Bureau of Natural Resources (Connecticut General Statutes 26-15, 20-15(a), 26-15 (b)). 

Each time you purchase a license your contribution goes to support hunting, fishing, and open space right here in CT. 

So, the next time you see a bald eagle, harvest a white-tail, pheasant, or turkey, or catch a brown trout or striped bass, give yourself and your fellow sportsmen a pat on the back!



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