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Master Angler Awards

If you make an outstanding catch, it may qualify for a Game and Parks Commission Master Angler Award.

Nebraska has one of the most popular angler recognition programs in the country. Each year thousands of Nebraska anglers qualify as Master Anglers by catching trophy-size fish. See rules and an application form below.
Download Master Angler Award application
State record fish

Master Angler Award qualifications

  • All fish must be taken from Nebraska waters.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Anglers 16 years of age or older must possess a current Nebraska fishing permit and enter the permit number on the application.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Anglers who release a Master Angler fish will receive a “Catch and Release Master Angler” pin, in addition to the Master Angler certificate.
  • Minimum weights must be met to qualify for a Master Angler Award for a harvested fish.
  • Minimum lengths are used strictly for Master Angler Awards for an individual fish that was caught and released.

Master Angler Award length requirements

Species; length; weight
Bass – Largemouth; 20 in.; 5 lbs.
Bass – Smallmouth; 18 in.; 3 lbs.
Bass – Spotted; 18 in.; 3 lbs.
Bass – Rock; 11 in.; 1 lb.
Bass – Striped; 32 in.; 10 lbs.
Bass – Striper hybrid; 24 in.; 8 lbs.
Bass – White; 17 in.; 2.5 lbs.
Bluegill – 10 in; 1 lb.
Buffalo – 26 in.; 10 lbs.
Bullhead – 15 in.; 2 lbs.
Burbot – 16 in.; 1 lb.
Carp – 32 in.; 15 lbs.
Catfish – Blue; 40 in.; 30 lbs.
Catfish – Channel; 30 in.; 12 lbs.
Catfish – Flathead; 32 in.; 15 lbs.
Crappie – 15 in.; 2 lbs.
Drum – 22 in.; 5 lbs.
Eel – 24 in.; 1 lb.
Gar – 40 in.; 8 lbs.
Goldeye – 16 in.; 1.5 lbs.
Muskie/Tiger Muskie – 40 in.; 15 lbs.
Paddlefish – 45 in.; 50 lbs.
Perch – Yellow; 13 in.; 1.25 lbs.
Perch – White; 12 in.; 1 lb.
Northern Pike – 36 in.; 10 lbs.
Sauger – 21 in.; 3 lbs.
Saugeye – 23 in.; 5 lbs.
Shovelnose Sturgeon – 28 in.; 2.5 lbs.
Sucker – 18 in.; 2 lbs.
Sunfish – 10 in.; 1 lb.
Trout – Brook – 14 in.; 1 lb.
Trout – Brown – 22 in.;4 lbs.
Trout – Rainbow – 23 in.; 5 lbs.
Walleye – 28 in.; 8 lbs.