The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) recently kicked off the exciting summer component of the 2011 Maryland Fishing Challenge, releasing up to 200 specially tagged striped bass imposters, along with one genuine Diamond Jim (currently worth $10,000) into the waters of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries
Each month during the summer (June, July and August), DNR releases 200 imposters worth at least $500 each and one genuine Diamond Jim. He’s worth $10,000 in June, $20,000 in July and $25,000 in August.
This year’s contest features a guaranteed $25,000 payout: If one of the three authentic Diamond Jims is not caught by Labor Day, the cash prize will be split equally among the anglers who catch imposters this summer.
The Maryland Fishing Challenge Citation Award program runs all year long, starting the day after Labor Day and ending the following Labor Day. Every angler who catches an award-qualifying fish or a tagged striped bass and enters the challenge becomes eligible to participate in the grand prize random drawing, to be held during the 43rd annual Seafood Festival on September 10, 2011 at Sandy Point State Park.
More than 60 species of fish are eligible for the grand prizes, including large and smallmouth bass, trout, walleye, musky and panfish in the freshwaters of Maryland; rockfish (striped bass), bluefish, drum, sea trout and perch in the Chesapeake Bay; and tuna, marlin, flounder, kingfish and sea bass caught in Maryland waters off the Atlantic Coast.
Two new species have been added to the list; the blueline tilefish and the blue crab. To see the complete citation award species list go to dnr.maryland.gov/fisheries/challenge/index.asp?p=species.
To be eligible for the contest, all fish must caught recreationally by rod and reel. Complete rules are available online at dnr.maryland.gov/fisheries/challenge.
Now in its seventh consecutive year, the Challenge showcases Maryland as a premier sport fishing destination for residents and visitors alike, with accessible, affordable, diverse and high quality opportunities for anglers of all ages.