New Hampton, NH – The 2021 New Hampshire Trophy Fish Program winners were recently announced by John Viar, Region 2 Fisheries Biologist and Trophy Fish Program Coordinator. Award certificates, suitable for framing and signed by the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department’s Executive Director and the Fish and Game Commission Chairman, have been distributed to each category winner. A list of all winning entries can be viewed by visiting www.fishnh.com/fishing/trophy.html.
“The Trophy Fish Program provides the formal recognition of successful anglers, preserves noteworthy catches, and even provides a few bragging rights,” said Viar. “Meanwhile, fisheries biologists receive valuable data about different species and water bodies statewide.”
A substantial increase in the total number of successful entries (76) was recorded in 2021, with 72 freshwater and 4 saltwater submissions. Two new state records were set, both saltwater, for a 20-inch, 3-pound, 2.24-ounce black sea bass caught by Stephen Clifford of Dover, NH, and a 14.5-inch, 1-pound, 14.72-ounce cunner caught by Ryan Patenaude of Rye, NH.
From a 15-pound, 0.32-ounce lake trout wrestled by Zachary Curran of New Hampton, NH, to a 10-inch bluegill finessed by James Leary of Haverhill, MA, each year Trophy Fish Program entries attest to the wide variety of opportunities available in New Hampshire’s lakes, ponds, rivers, and coastal waters.
In fact, the variety of freshwater species submitted in 2021 was the most diverse in recent memory. With successful entries being received for not only most cold-water species (e.g. landlocked salmon, lake trout, rainbow trout) and warm-water species (e.g., largemouth and smallmouth bass, chain pickerel), but all major panfish species (bluegill, pumpkinseed, black crappie, yellow perch, white perch, rock bass) and even “other” species such as brown bullhead, common carp, and fallfish.
“Clearly, anglers were out in full force in 2021, and it will be exciting to see if such increased and varied catches will continue to be submitted in 2022,” noted Viar.
For a listing of all winning entries, application forms, rules, state records, and winners from past years visit www.fishnh.com/fishing/trophy.html.