As an aside, Nebraska has a program called the Master Angler Awards. Each species of fish has a specific weight that qualifies as a Master Angler eligible fish. Some folks regard the Master Angler Award as a thing of naught. I feel it is a great start for new anglers, or anglers pursuing an exceptional fish of a specific species, to find how a "larger" fish plays. More importantly for me, it teaches me about the species and what it takes to grow and fool a fish of larger than the average. The following are the qualifications for a Master Angler Award:
1) All fish must be taken from Nebraska waters.
2)Fish must be taken by hook and line. Fish caught on banklines are not eligible. Fish must be hooked, played and landed by the applicant for the award.
3) The catch must be verified. This may be done by an employee of the Game and Parks Commission, a permit vendor, a witness or a photograph.
4)Anglers 16 years of age or older must possess a current Nebraska fishing permit and enter the permit number on the application.
5) Only fish immediately released are eligible for an award based on length. Any fish kept in a livewell or on a stringer must meet the minimum weight requirement to receive an award.
6) Anglers may receive only one award, based on weight, per year for each species. There is no limit on the number of awards per year based on length.
7) Anglers who release a Master Angler fish will receive a "Catch and Release Master Angler" pin, in addition to the Master Angler certificate.
8) Minimum weights must be met to qualify for a Master Angler Award for a harvested fish.
9) Minimum lengths are used strictly for Master Angler Awards for an individual fish that was caught and released.
For a Nebraska Master Angler wiper, caught and released, a fish 24 inches in length is the minimum.
Up to this last week, I have landed several wiper. Unfortunately, all the others have been less than 24 inches, my first being just shy of it.
Here is my first wiper:
As our last "hoorah" fishing in Nebraska together, Targhee and I decided to chase wipers hoping we could find the MA wipers.
The morning started slow but we persisted and eventually found the fish. Targhee hooked up twice before I get into the action.
I finally got into the action but the fish were "smaller."
Things turned off for a bit but we kept after it.We both managed to find our MA wipers!!!
Targ was quick with the camera so we got some good picture and s/he swam off strong to fight another day.
I have yet to decided if I want to submit the application for a pin and certificate.... My memory is still pretty strong :)