There’s something fishy about this column

Three-fourths of the Earth’s surface is water, and one-fourth is land. It is quite clear that the good Lord intended us to spend triple the amount of time fishing as taking care of the lawn.”
I wish I could take credit for that quote, but it was Chuck Clark who offered this wisdom. I don’t know who he is, but his insight often inspires me to allow the dandelions to flourish.
Now, the state Division of Wildlife is ready to reward you for your angling efforts so that you can prove your value to those watching your grass grow.
The Fish Ohio program recognizes anglers for noteworthy catches. Since 1976, over 400,000 anglers have been recognized.
Anglers with a qualifying catch can receive a collectible Fish Ohio lapel pin. Each year’s pin has a different species of fish on it, along with the year, so the pin that the angler receives won’t necessarily have the same fish on it as the qualifying fish caught.
There’s also a Master Angler category for those who catch four different Fish Ohio qualifying species in a single year. The Master Angler pin is the same as the Fish Ohio pin except it’s gold in color.
There are 20 species eligible for recognition, each with a minimum qualifying size.
Blue catfish, 35 inches; brown trout, 25 inches; carp, 26 inches; channel catfish, 26 inches; crappie, 13 inches; flathead catfish, 35 inches; freshwater drum, 22 inches; hybrid striped bass, 21 inches; and largemouth bass, 21 inches.
Muskellunge, 36 inches; northern pike, 32 inches; rainbow trout, 28 inches; rock bass, 10 inches; sauger, 16 inches; saugeye, 21 inches; smallmouth bass, 20 inches; sunfish, 9 inches; walleye, 28 inches; white bass, 16 inches; and yellow perch, 13 inches.
You can find the application available at www.wildohio.com by pressing the “Fishing” tab.
“People who fish for food, and sport be darned, are called pot-fishermen. The more expert ones are called crack pot-fishermen. All other fishermen are called crackpot fishermen. This is confusing.” — Ed Zern, 1947
Along the Way:
If you enjoy a home-cooked perch dinner, you may want to try one of the newest fishing spots in northwestern Ohio.
The Division of Wildlife stocked the Fremont Reservoir last fall with 93,008 yellow perch fingerling and this spring with 140,000 fry.
According to Mike Wilkerson, fish management supervisor for District 2, fisheries biologists have seen perch grow to seven inches by the first summer in similar newly stocked reservoirs.
In 2008, the division provided Fremont with a $5 million grant from Ohio’s boat motor fuel taxes to help fund the reservoir and has been working with city officials on the removal of the Ballville Dam.
The dam’s removal would provide ecological restoration of the Sandusky River and increase angler opportunities in the area.
Removal is expected to improve walleye spawning on the river, improving the fishery and likely increasing the numbers of anglers that travel to the area.
Step Outside:
• The 2014 edition of “Black’s Wing and Clay, Waterfowl Directory” offers shotgunners an equipment guide, instructions and pointers, hunting and shooting destinations and information about dozens of schools and clinics across the country. It’s available from Wolfe Publishing Co., 800-899-7810; www.uplandalmanaconline.com.
• Today: Steel challenge shoot, 11 a.m. HCCL, 13748 Jackson Township 168, Findlay.
• Tomorrow: Sporting clays shoot, registration opens at 8 a.m. UCOA, 6943 Marion Township 243, Findlay.
• June 22: Mixed animal archery shoot, 8:30 a.m. Field and Stream Bowhunters, 11400 Allen Township 109, Findlay. Contact: 419-422-6756.
• June 25, 5 p.m.-9 p.m., and June 29, 8:30 a.m.: NRA basic pistol class, complies with concealed carry requirements. UCOA 6943 Marion Twp. Rd. 243, Findlay. Contact 567-525-4664 to register or for information.
Abrams is a retired wildlife officer supervisor for the state Division of Wildlife in Findlay. He can be reached at P.O. Box 413, Mount Blanchard, OH 45867-0413 or via email at jimsfieldnotes@aol.com

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