Article printed from SunSentinel.com

Check-It Stiks help officers ensure anglers measure up

October 3, 2008

Making sure that anglers' catches are legal size will be a lot easier for Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission law enforcement officers thanks to Coastal Conservation Association Florida.

A thoughtful gift

CCA Florida chairman Mark Carter presented 200 fish-measuring tools known as Check-It Stiks to the FWC at its commission meeting last month in Jacksonville. The idea to donate the Stiks came from CCA Florida Naples chapter member Wright Taylor. "I know that the Check-It Stiks will be a very convincing tool that the officers can use to help them make their cases in court," Taylor said.

What they are

The Check-It Stiks are lightweight, noncorrosive aluminum rulers that can accurately measure fish up to 37 inches in length. They will also help standardize the measuring devices carried by FWC officers.

Quotable

"The FWC liked them so much," CCA Florida executive director Ted Forsgren said, "they bought some more so everybody would have one."

Helpful already

With mullet running, the Stiks have been used to catch anglers who have kept undersized snapper (16-inch minimum for muttons, 10 inches for mangroves), pompano (11-inch minimum), Spanish mackerel (12-inch minimum) and bluefish (12-inch minimum). "They work good," FWC Lt. Dave Bingham, who is based in Broward County, said of the Stiks.

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