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Latest Bites - April 2018
Opening Day is April 14, 2018
2018 Fishing Licenses are available now:   Fishing licenses for 2018 are now available at many town clerks, bait and tackle shops, and online.

2018 Angler's Guide is available now:  Get your 2018 Angler's Guide at your local bait and tackle shop, town hall, DEEP field office, or online.

2017 Fish Stocking Report :   The annual fish stocking publication detailing the number and type of fish stocked by the Fisheries Division is now available. A handy resource to find out what fish species are stocked where!


FREE Fishing Day - May 12, 2018:   No license needed to fish on May 12, 2018. A great opportunity to take someone new fishing with you, and show them what they are missing! The annual Family Fishing Day event hosted by DEEP Fisheries and State Parks Divisions will be Saturday, May 12, 2018 at Wharton Brook State Park, Wallingford.  FREE fishing (no license needed) all day everywhere!!

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!

Trout and Salmon Stamp:   The Trout and Salmon Stamp was formally approved by the Legislative Regulation Review Committee (LRRC) at their February 27, 2018 meeting.  The cost of the stamp will be $5.00 for anyone 18 or older, even those who are 65+, and $3.00 for those 16-17.  If you have already purchased your license, you will soon be able to add the trout stamp, should you desire.

If you have additional questions please see the special section below, visit our FAQ page, or contact us at deep.inland.fisheries@ct.gov 
The 2018 Winner is......
Jeanne Wadsworth is super-jazzed about landing this Largemouth Bass (it wrapped the line around a stump and she thought she would lose the fish).  This photo, taken by Sandy Vinton, beat out over 225 other great entries, thanks to all who participated! But as we have all had that one catch where landing the fish simply made us feel fantastic, this photo was a perfect representation of that "this is why I fish" feeling.  Fishing means many things to many people, but we can all agree that moments like this are a treat.  The Angler's Guide is now available on the DEEP web site.
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 as they may change throughout the season

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  be 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.
NEW Regulation for the 
West Branch Farmington River
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.  
2018 Angler's Guide Photo Contest:  
Honorable Mention
Thank you for submitting the great photos for the Angler's Guide Photo Contest.  Below are five photos, any of which would have made a super cover.  Top center is Joe Diorio with a beauty of a Northern Pike (37"), middle left is Lea Trueblood who would like to use her photo with a 5+ pound April Smallmouth Bass to inspire other ladies to take up fishing, middle right is Gabby Ferraiolo proudly holding a Black Sea Bass she caught off of Clinton, Ct using squid, bottom left is Andrea Nivolo with a 4+ pound Smallmouth from Candlewood Lake, and bottom right is Jack Dugay reeling in a 13.5 inch Porgy he caught on his last bit of clam.

Congrats to our Honorable Mention photos- can't wait to see what comes in this year!  Email your entry to deep.inland.fisheries@ct.gov 
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
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 Banded Sunfish (Enneacanthus obesus) is a relatively small sunfish only reaching about 3 inches in length.  Although small, it is a beautiful fish with gold flecks and hints of rich purple.

Banded sunfish are native to Connecticut.  They are primarily found in shallow, weedy backwaters of acidic swamps, ponds, and streams along the eastern coastal plain of CT.  Currently Banded Sunfish are listed as a species of special concern.

"Species of Special Concern" means any native plant species or any native nonharvested wildlife species documented by scientific research and inventory to have a naturally restricted range or habitat in the state, to be at a low population level, to be in such high demand by man that its unregulated taking would be detrimental to the conservation of its population or has been extirpated from the state.
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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