CT Fishin' Tips
July 2016

Your source for Connecticut fishing news, pointers, and tips!
Celebrate 150 Years of Natural Resource
Conservation  in Connecticut!

The DEEP's Bureau of Natural Resources is celebrating its 150th Anniversary in 2016.  Joining in the celebration are the Divisions of Wildlife, Inland Fisheries, Marine Fisheries, Forestry, and the Environmental Conservation (EnCon) Police, as well as many partners.

Throughout 2016, we will look back at our history and also look ahead to the future of natural resources in our state. Follow along with the celebration and participate in special events to be held year-long.
Follow along with the celebration an participate in special events to be held year-long. Learn more on our  Facebook Page and the  DEEP Website.
Latest Bites

NEW! The Weekend Fishing Forecast is being posted on our CT Fish and Wildlife
Facebook page each Friday.

Blackfish (Tautog) season opened July 1 and will remain open until August 31, 2016. The minimum size for this tasty marine fish is 16" and there is a 2 fish per person per day limit.  Try fishing rocky areas, piers, or pilings with crabs or clams.  Good luck!

459 People took part in our the first free fishing license day of 2016.  Held on Father's Day, June 19, 2016 the response was overwhelmingly positive with most people experiencing excellent fishing with family and friends.

Our DEEP weekly fishing report has your detailed fishing information 
Save the Date (or 2)
Connecticut Hunting and Fishing Day

Connecticut Hunting and Fishing Day will be held at  two great locations  this year:

Saturday, September 10
Franklin Wildlife Swamp Wildlife Management Area in North Franklin.

Saturday, September 24
Sessions Woods Wildlife Management Area in Burlington. 

Both events will be from 10:00 AM-4:00 PM with shuttle parking available

These  FREE  events feature activities for all ages, including live birds of prey, target shooting, hunting dog demonstrations, archery, children's crafts and activities, fishing demonstrations, and more! Equipment vendors, sporting clubs, fish & wildlife exhibits, and conservation organizations will also be present.

Visit the  Hunting and Fishing Day webpage often for updates on events, participants, parking info, and more!
Something Fishy!
Upcoming Events Not to Miss

Saturday, August 13, 2016 - second Free Fishing License Day
Dust off your fishing rod and favorite fishing hat.  The second (and final) free fishing license day of 2016 will be on Saturday, August 13, 2016.  Anyone can participate by getting their FREE 1-day license through DEEP's mobile friendly license system starting July 27, 2016.

Saturday, August 13, 2016 - FREE! Saltwater Fishing Event
Come down to Fort Trumbull State Park on Saturday, August 13, 2016 from 10 am to 3 pm.  The Connecticut Aquatic Resources Education (CARE) program will be providing rods, bait, and expert instruction.  Each year the fishing is fabulous with catches of snapper bluefish, butterfish, fluke, blackfish, and many spider crabs!
Blue Claw Crabbing
Blue Claw Crabs can be found along the Connecticut shoreline in most tidal creeks and rivers.  Download or print our informational crabbing 
f actsheet
 for tips and pointers on how to "crab". 

Blue Claw Crabs are favored for their delicate sweet white meat. Catching them can be as simple as tying a chicken leg or chicken wing to a piece of string and tossing it out into the water.  Then, periodically check the line to feel if a crab is on the other end (it will pull back).  Then slowly pull the crab toward shore and scoop it with a long-handled net.

Other ways to crab are to place bait into a circular trap or a star trap.  Lower the trap to the bottom and occasionally lift the trap.

Rules and Regulations:  No license is required to crab. There is no daily limit on the number of crabs you may take, however, the minimum size for crab with a hard shell (hard to the touch) is 5 inches wide from tip to tip (spikes on either side of the shell). The minimum size for a crab with a soft shell (soft to the touch) is 3.5 inches.  Female crabs with eggs must be released immediately (eggs, if present, are on the underside of the crab, are bright orange, and look spongy).
Mystery Fish
If you think you can correctly name the fish in this photo then, email DEEP.Inland.fisheries@ct.gov with your guess.  Good luck!
The June Mystery Fish was the Tench (Tinca tinca ).  A member of the minnow family (cyprinidae) Tench are native to Europe and Asia.  The species was imported into the United States along with the Common Carp by the U.S. Fish Commission in the late 1800's.  At the time the fish commission was looking to stock fish to be a readily available source of protein to feed a rapidly growing nation (Tench are a favorite food fish in Europe).  

Tench have a very limited distribution in Connecticut only being found in Bantam Lake. They primarily feed on the bottom and can be taken with small tackle baited with worms or dough balls (similar to carp fishing).
New!  Youth Fishing Passport Scorecard

Make every catch count.
The  fishing challenge scorecard will help your angler keep track of their catches! Just download the new youth fishing passport scorecard and each time a fish is caught, check off the box and email the photo to deep.inland.fisheries@ct.gov and include fishing challenge in the subject.

We will keep a tally of all of the successful catches by passport holder and give a fishing prize pack to the top anglers.

The  Youth Fishing Passport angler with the greatest number of fish will win a fishing prize pack.
For your tackle box

Two must have lures.
Two tried and true lures for the tackle box include the "Kastmaster" and the "Rough Rider".  Both mimic a small minnow as they flash and wobble through the water on a steady retrieve. 

Use either lure to catch a variety of fish including trout, pickerel, sunfish, or use larger versions for saltwater species like bluefish and striped bass. 
Have you fished here?
Courtesy of Jennifer Tilsch
The Housatonic River from Sharon to Kent, a great location for fishing and more.
Running North/South along the Route 7 in the western part of the state is the Housatonic River.  A day-trip to the "Housy" will not disappoint.  From suberb trout fishing in the trout managment area (both a fly-fishing only section and an all gear section), to using an ultra light rod and rubber grubs for smallmouth bass (bass management area) there are plenty of fish waiting for you.  

After fishing, take a hike along the Appalachian Trail, take in the falls at "Kent Falls", or grab a bite to eat at any of the local eateries. 

The DEEP manages Housatonic Meadows, a campground on the banks of the river should you like to spend a night or two - and be on the river at both dawn and dusk.   Give the "Housy" a try.
Ultimate Fish Story!

You can be on our next cover!
We looking for that special photo to capture the essence of the great fishing here in Connecticut. Be sure to keep your cell phone, Go-Pro, or camera handy!  Get all of the  contest details on our web page and email your submissions to: deep.inland.fisheries@ct.gov (subject:  Angler's Guide Cover Contest).  

Good Luck!

Email your photo to DEEP.Inland.fisheries.gov
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. 

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!



You are making a difference and we thank you for your support!
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