Catfishing Editorials, News, & Updates

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Championing Conservation: ACA's Commitment to Catfish Sustainability

The American Catfishing Association (ACA) remains steadfast in its mission to champion conservation and regulatory reform for catfishing across the nation. Over the past few years, our team has been diligently working on reforms in various states to ensure the sustainability of catfish populations and the integrity of their habitats.

We understand the catfish community's desire for transparency regarding our conservation efforts. While we strive to share as much information as possible, some of our initiatives must remain confidential to prevent opposition from undermining our efforts.

To provide insight into our objectives, here are the key regulation reforms we advocate for in every state:

ACA Conservation and Regulation Recommendations

  1. Uniform Size Regulations: Commercial fishing and for-profit private lake operations should adhere to the same size regulations as recreational fishing.
  2. Ban on Indiscriminate Fishing Apparatus: Certain indiscriminate fishing gear should be banned. Permitted gear must be clearly marked with the owner's information.
  3. Conservation Fees for Pay Lakes: Patrons of private pay lakes, who may not need a fishing license, should pay a nominal conservation fee to support state conservation programs and research.
  4. Regulation of Pay Lake Operations: Limit the number of fish that pay lake operations can take from public waters.
  5. Restrictions on Live Fish Transportation: Prohibit the transportation of live fish within the state without a special permit, limited to accredited aquariums, research organizations, catch-and-release tournaments, and state stocking programs.
  6. Increased Violation Fines: Substantially increase fines for violations across all segments, including asset confiscation and license revocation for repeat offenders.
  7. Targeting Invasive Species: Encourage and possibly incentivize commercial fishing to target invasive species for non-human consumption.
  8. Harvest Limits: Implement harvest limits (creel/bag limits) to prevent the overharvesting of fish.
  9. Trophy Catfish as Sport Fish: Classify trophy catfish as a sport fish in all state and bordering waterways.
  10. Spawn Season Restrictions: Consider restrictions during spawn seasons to protect breeding species during their vulnerable periods.

Additionally, the ACA collaborates with several national organizations, including the American Sportsman Association, The Congressional Sportsman’s Society, along with many other highly motivated and nationally known conservation and regulation reform groups.

The American Catfishing Association is dedicated to representing the catfish community in every way possible. However, our success depends on your support. Join us in our efforts to ensure the future of catfishing by becoming a member at www.jointheaca.com.

Together, we can make a difference.

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Announcing the Dedicated Catfish Community Conservation Fund

The American Catfishing Association (ACA) Conservation Foundation is excited to announce the creation of a dedicated conservation fund, designed to support vital conservation projects. This fund will be managed by an oversight committee, carefully selected from our members.

Join the Oversight Committee

We are looking for passionate ACA members to serve on this oversight committee. As a committee member, you will play a crucial role in deciding how and where the funds will be allocated. Ideal candidates will have:

  • A strong passion for catfishing.
  • A solid understanding of conservation and regulation reform processes.
  • Significant administrative experience to manage the fund effectively and collaborate as part of a dedicated team.

Apply Now

If you meet these qualifications and are an ACA member in good standing, we encourage you to apply. To be part of this important committee, please complete an application at www.jointheaca.com/oversightapp.

Together, we can make a significant impact on the future of catfish conservation

Apply Now

Exciting Update: New ACA Hall of Fame Nomination Process for 2024

https://tm.americancatfishingassociation.com/aca-member-community/catfishing-hall-of-fame/We're thrilled to announce a revamped nomination process for the ACA Hall of Fame in 2024!

The ACA Hall of Fame honors individuals who have made significant contributions to the sport of catfishing and its preservation. Now, the power to nominate deserving candidates is in your hands. Whether you are a member of the ACA or not, you can nominate those who have shown exceptional dedication and leadership in the catfishing community.

All nominations will be meticulously evaluated by current members of the ACA Hall of Fame. After a thorough review, the Hall of Fame Induction Committee, composed of existing Hall of Fame members, will select two outstanding individuals to be inducted as the next members of the ACA Hall of Fame.

To submit your nomination, please complete the nomination form available at https://tm.americancatfishingassociation.com/aca-member-community/catfishing-hall-of-fame/

Join us in celebrating those who make a difference in the world of catfishing!

ACA HOF

Be a Part of Regulation Enforcement

As responsible anglers, we all value regulations that protect our fisheries. However, enforcing these regulations can sometimes pose challenges for local, state, and federal authorities. This is where we, as responsible anglers, can make a significant difference.

If you witness or suspect any regulation violations, it's crucial to report what you observed and precisely where the incident occurred to your area authorities.

The American Catfishing Association (ACA) provides a comprehensive list of toll-free violation hotlines for each state (where available) on our website. Accessing this list is easy and doesn't require ACA membership. You can find it here:  https://tm.americancatfishingassociation.com/content.php?id=632

Remember, if you see something, say something! Let's work together to ensure our fisheries remain protected and thriving.

State Hotlines

New ACA Organizational Model: Enhancing Member Engagement and Administrative Efficiency

The American Catfishing Association (ACA) is excited to announce a transformative initiative designed to address the challenges of our current single-administration model. This new approach, which will take a significant amount of time to implement aims to boost member satisfaction and streamline administrative processes by establishing regional chapters across the country.

Establishing Regional Chapters

Our proposal involves creating regional chapters within the ACA, each led by a dedicated and knowledgeable director. These regional directors will have a deep understanding of their area’s anglers, regulations, tournaments, and industry dynamics. By decentralizing responsibilities, we can provide tailored support and foster stronger connections within local catfishing communities.

Regional directors will serve as advocates for their regions, acting as liaisons between anglers, government regulators, and the ACA leadership. Their established credibility—whether through conservation efforts, tournament participation, industry involvement, or educational outreach—will ensure effective grassroots representation and engagement.

Benefits of the New Model

  1. Enhanced Support and Representation: Regional directors will offer localized support and advocacy, addressing the specific needs and objectives of their communities.
  2. Improved Communication and Collaboration: Directors will act as vital conduits for communication, fostering collaboration and collective action among catfish enthusiasts.
  3. Accessible Membership: By significantly reducing annual membership costs, we aim to make ACA membership more accessible, encouraging broader participation and engagement.

Proposed Roles and Offerings

Core Mission: The ACA remains committed to fostering unity within the catfish community by facilitating information exchange, promoting regulatory and conservation efforts, fostering tournament alliances, providing educational resources, and nurturing camaraderie among members.

Web Presence: Our website will be redesigned to feature dedicated sections for each region. These regional microsites will offer tailored tools, information exchanges, and indexes, accessible to all members, with limited access for non-members.

Conservation and Regulation Efforts: Regional directors, with their local expertise, will enhance our ability to identify and address specific regulatory needs. They will collaborate with the local catfish community and the ACA's central office to drive effective conservation efforts.

Tournament Alliance Revision: To ensure fair and competitive environments, the ACA proposes restructuring from four divisions to six regions. The top 10 points earners from each region will qualify for a national championship event.

Regional Reporting: Directors will provide monthly reports on activities and events, disseminated through email, social media, and our website’s news sections.

Director Assistance: Regional directors will have the autonomy to appoint state associates for additional localized support. They will oversee and coordinate these associates' activities.

Revised Annual Membership Program

Membership Fee Reduction: Annual membership fees will be significantly reduced, making ACA membership more affordable and encouraging wider participation.

Standardized Membership Period: All memberships will follow a calendar year, from January 1 to December 31, simplifying administrative processes.

Digital Membership Credentials: Physical membership kits will be replaced with digital credentials, modernizing our approach and reducing costs.

Regional Director Engagement: Two-thirds of the membership fees collected within a region will be allocated for regional use, compensating directors and supporting local activities. The remaining one-third will fund ACA’s main operations.

Sponsorship Revenue: Regional directors will retain the majority of sponsorship revenue generated in their regions for promotional activities, with a portion supporting general ACA operations.

Conservation Fundraising: Funds raised for conservation initiatives will directly benefit regional efforts, with half allocated for local use, a quarter for regional administrative expenses, and the remaining quarter for the ACA Conservation Foundation general fund and administration.

By implementing these changes, we aim to increase membership participation and empower regional directors to drive meaningful impact within their communities. Together, we can further our mission of conservation and outdoor stewardship for generations to come.

If you are interested in becoming one of the six ACA Regional Directors, stay tuned for our upcoming application and selection process.

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Catfish Kids (Sept. 2020):
Kayaking Kids Need Proper PFD's

Place the youth in the forward position in the kayak to learn the ropes. An adult in the stern can provide the power and control...

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Catfish Kids (Aug. 2020):
A Weekend Outing, a Trophy Catfish, and a Lesson in Conservation

Lane and Tyler baited with a live sunfish to catch this beast of a flathead.    A Weekend Outing, a Trophy Catfish, and a Lesson…

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Conservation Efforts of the American Catfishing Association

The formation of the American Catfish Association (ACA) was formally announced on January 9, 2020 at 1:00 pm. Similar efforts have been discussed over time but never really got off the ground…

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