IGFA LAUNCHES LENGTH WORLD RECORD CATEGORY
The International Game Fish Association recently added a 100-percent, all-release world record category. Unlike the typical world records, where a fish must be caught and weighed on land, this new category is based on length rather than weight. IGFA's All-Tackle Length category will make 60 freshwater and 67 saltwater species eligible for new world records while requiring the fish to be returned to the water alive after measurement. With 127 new world record vacancies available at the beginning of 2011, the IGFA's World Records office received a flurry of competition for these records.
“The new All-Tackle Length record category is another great means of recognizing angler achievement and also has a strong conservation message,” says IGFA World Records Coordinator Jack Vitek. “While the IGFA does not require a fish to be killed for traditional weight category records, and many fish are indeed released alive, this is the first IGFA record category to adopt an all-release format.”
Anglers pursuing a length record must utilize a standard measuring device (available on IGFA's online Store). According to the official IGFA Rules and Requirements for All-Tackle Length records, the fish “must be measured at the site of capture and released so that it swims away on its own and in good condition.”
To facilitate healthy release, the document also includes tips on best release practices and prohibits fish entered for length records from also being submitted for traditional weight records -- another deterrent from keeping the fish out of the water any longer than necessary.
“Catch-and-release fishing is becoming increasingly popular worldwide,” stated IGFA Conservation Director Jason Schratwieser. “We know recreational anglers are passionate about conservation, and this new record category reflects their dedication to conserving game fish.”