Freshwater Fish State Record Program

Georgia State Record Fish Program

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division recognizes anglers who catch trophy fish through the Freshwater Fish State Record Program. In order to qualify for a Freshwater Fish State Records, the catch weight must exceed the existing state record by one ounce or more. Should you catch a potential new State Record, be sure to review the information below so you can successfully submit your fish!

General Rules and Requirements

ELIGIBLE FISH: See listing on Application Form.

WHO CAN APPLY? Both resident and non-resident anglers are eligible. WRD reserves the right to refuse any questionable entry.

APPLICATION AND PHOTOS: The angler must submit an Application Form with a clear, side view photo of the fish, and a photo of the angler with the fish. 

LEGAL SEASON, SPORTING TACKLE AND OTHER INFORMATION: Fish must be caught in Georgia during the legal angling season for the species taken in accordance with all fishing laws and regulations. Fish must be caught on sporting tackle and be hooked and landed by the entrant. Bush hooks, trot lines, jugs, baskets, nets, etc., are not considered sporting tackle. Fish caught from hatcheries or intensive fish culture facilities are not eligible. Freshwater fish caught from private waters in which adults of the species in question are stocked are not eligible.

CERTIFIED SCALE: Fish must be weighed on a scale that has been certified accurate to the nearest ounce, or lesser weight, by the Department of Agriculture within the last year. Fish may be weighed in pounds and ounces or in metric; however, metric weights will be converted to pounds and ounces. Estimated weights will not be accepted. The weight of the sling, platform, or rope (if one is used when weighing the fish) must be deducted from the total weight. Only one-ounce graduation will be recognized. Visual fractionizing of graduations is not allowed. Weights that fall between two graduations of the scale must be rounded to the lower of the two. The owner of the scale must provide an address and telephone number.

PUBLICITY: Names and photos of State Record recipients will be posted on the WRD website, and may be used in social media posts, or released to media or other interested parties.

SUBMIT: A state record fish submission MUST be brought to a WRD Fisheries Management Office.  

State Record Fish Official Rules

  • Time Frame: Applications must be submitted within 90 days of the catch.
  • Qualifying Weight: The fish must weigh at least one ounce more than the existing record. Any catch which matches the existing record, or that exceeds the record by less than an ounce, will be considered a tie. 
  • Certified Scale: State Record Fish must be weighed on a certified scale. See “Certified Scale” information above. 
  • Identification: A WRD Fisheries Section biologist or technician must identify the fish and sign the application.
  • Unacceptable Entries: No frozen fish or mounted fish are eligible. 
  • Witnesses: Fish must be weighed in the presence of two witnesses, both of whom must be at least 18 years old and not a member of the entrant’s immediate family. Both witnesses must provide an address and telephone number on the application. Witnesses are not necessary if the fish is weighed on a certified scale at a WRD office.

Recognition

Anglers whose fish qualify as a Freshwater Fish State Record will receive a certificate in a presentation binder, a personalized/embroidered ball cap, two free passes to the Go Fish Education Center, photo and info on the WRD website, and an issued news release and subsequent social media postings when the record is official. The names and addresses of individuals who receive Freshwater Fish State Records may be released to the media and other interested parties.