While individual anglers participating in this year’s CCA Florida S.T.A.R. tournament might dream of winning their share of the over $500,000 in prizes, including a variety of brand new boats, it is the catch data collected through the tournament that will ultimately benefit Florida anglers the most.
The S.T.A.R tournament, now in its seventh year, is an online catch and release competition that is open to anglers across the state of Florida starting May 29. Top prizes, including Yamaha-powered Contender 22 Sport, Pathfinder 2200 TRS and Spyder 19FX Vapor boats, will be awarded to registered anglers who catch one of the tagged redfish that will be released around the state.
“Partnerships with organizations both inside the fishing industry, like Power Pole, and outside the industry are critical to the conservation mission not only from a financial aspect but also from an awareness perspective,” CCA Florida director Leiza Fitzgerald said. “CCA has leveraged the monies and grants that we have garnered into 5.4 million in habitat and water quality projects throughout the state of Florida in the last 10 years.
“We could not have completed these projects with out the financial support of our partners and the backs and hands of our member volunteers who have put in the man and women hours to get the work done.”
Power-Pole, creators of the original Shallow Water Anchor, is proud to be the title sponsor of the Conservation Division for the last three years of this event. Entries in this division is open to anglers of all ages and skill levels. Each catch entry provides species, length, where the fish was hooked, whether it was harvested or released, and if it was released, what condition was the fish when it was released.
“The Power Pole Conservation Division has more entries in this division than any other because every fish caught can be entered. This makes each of the participants citizen biologists” Fitzgerald said. “This catch data is utilized by other conservation organizations and universities for research on stock assessments, habitat mapping and the health and condition of certain species. The STAR Power Pole Conservation division is one of the largest data sources for use by these organizations and provides invaluable catch data which is needed to offer reliable conclusions that can used to assist in fisheries management.”
“Power-Pole is a natural fit to sponsor the Conservation Division because it is the category that is accessible to all anglers no matter their age or skill level,” Power-Pole national sales manager Dan Benson said. “The conservation of the environment and promoting the sport of fishing are two of the pillars that Power-Pole as a company was founded on.”
The Power-Pole Conservation Division, is one of 17 divisions specifically targeting 12 different species. The top prizes will be awarded to anglers that catch a fish that has been tagged and released by CCA around the state of Florida, including the West Marine Redfish and Tigress Mahi Division. Other divisions include ladies, kayak, guides and many more. Since most division winners are determined by a random drawing, it is not about catching the biggest fish but submitting qualifying entries for an opportunity to be drawn as a winner. There is also a Youth Scholarship Division presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors that will award $100,000 in scholarships to 12 young anglers.
This event is open to all anglers who become CCA members along with a $40 registration fee. All proceeds help fund CCA’s conservation efforts throughout the year. To register for STAR 2021 or receive additional information on divisions, prizes and more, visit ccaflstar.com.
Power-Pole supports CCA Florida, along with its annual banquet, through the company’s CASTnet program which helps fund non-profits and charities that have water conservation as their primary goal. This includes funding organizations that focus on water quality issues, research and habitat restoration, to providing those organizations with the tools they need to make a positive change.