Young anglers statewide submitted their biggest catches for the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s 35th annual Youth Fishing Tournament, held June 5 at more than 30 public freshwater fishing ponds as a fish-on-your-own, semi-virtual event for children ages four through 15.
Tournament participants measured and submitted the length of their catches through the Fishing Chaos app to compete for the title of overall state winner with the biggest fish. The title went to Kane Messina of Millsboro, who caught a bass measuring 21 inches long. Big fish results also included:
- Largest largemouth bass:
o First place: 21 inches long, Kane Messina, Millsboro
o Second place: 16.5 inches long, Evie Whaley, Bridgeville
o Third place: 16.25 inches long, Cohen Betts, Milton
- Largest chain pickerel: first place, 17.5 inches long, Wesley Whitt, Seaford
- Largest yellow perch:
o First place: 11 inches long, John Timmons, Georgetown
o Second place: 7 inches long, Michael Hopkins, New Castle
o Third place: 5.75 inches long, Austin Alderman, Middletown
- Largest sunfish:
o First place: 9.25 inches long, Brinley Douglas, Middletown
o Second place: 9 inches, Brielle Douglas, Middletown
o Third place, tie: 8 inches long, Cole Smith, Magnolia; John Timmons, Georgetown; and Colton Wegner, Cave Creek, Ariz.
- Largest catfish: first place, 8 inches long, Michael Hopkins, New Castle
Winners will each receive a trophy in the near future.
The tournament was established by the DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife and is sponsored by the Delaware Natural Resources Police to introduce youth to the sport of fishing and to teach the catch-and-release approach to conservation, which is encouraged for all participants.
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities, and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNRECDivision of Fish and Wildlife conserves and manages Delaware’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, and provides fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and boating access on nearly 65,000 acres of public land. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.