The #IFISHNY Challenge, a statewide fishing contest, has begun.
The contest calls upon anglers to show off their prize largemouth and striped bass catches by using the New York Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife app. The challenge runs through Labor Day, Sept. 1, and winners will be announced during the first week of September.
"The #IFISHNY Challenge is a great way to showcase some of the best fishing in the country - right here in New York," said Gov. Andrew Cuomo. "The New York Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife App immerses nature-lovers in all-things-outdoors, inviting anglers of all ages and skill levels to enter the Challenge. Once you fish in New York, you'll be hooked."
The state DEC will provide one free lifetime fishing license to be awarded for the longest largemouth bass and one for the longest striped bass caught and properly submitted to the challenge. Runners-up in each of DEC's seven Watchable Wildlife Regions throughout the state - Long Island, New York City, Catskills, Hudson Valley, Adirondacks, Central New York and Western New York - will be awarded other prizes, including a B.A.S.S. Gift Basket with a year's subscription to Bassmaster Magazine, Taste NY Gift Baskets, DEC Watchable Wildlife Guides and Conservationist magazine subscriptions, lift tickets valid at Gore, Whiteface or Belleayre Mountains.
"Largemouth and striped bass are two of New York's most popular game fish," said Joe Martens, DEC commissioner. "Using the Trophy Case feature in our New York Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife App, we invite anglers to help us showcase the world-class game fishing available in New York State and have some fast-paced fun in the process."
DEC officials developed the free New York Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife mobile app in partnership with the Parks By Nature Network at no cost to the state. The app provides up-to-date information on fishing, hunting, wildlife watching and other outdoor adventure opportunities in New York state and gives both novice and seasoned outdoorsmen and women essential information in the palm of their hand. The app was released in May and is available for use on iOS and Android devices; users can download it from the state's mobile app webpage.
Cuomo's NY Open for Fishing and Hunting Initiative works to improve recreational activities for resident and visiting sportsmen and sportswomen and boosts tourism throughout the state. The initiative includes streamlining fishing and hunting licensing, reducing license fees, improving access for fishing at various sites across the state, stocking as much as 900,000 pounds of fish, providing free fishing events and enabling many more New Yorkers to experience fishing for the first time. The initiative also increases hunting and other activities across the state by providing funding to support land and water access projects to connect hunters, anglers, bird watchers and others who enjoy the outdoors to more than 380,000 acres of existing State and easement lands that have not reached their full potential. Through these efforts, New York has become a premier destination for bass fishing tournaments at the Great Lakes, Finger Lakes, Lake Champlain and Oneida Lake.