GLASTONBURY, Conn. — 12-year-old Daniel Echols has bragging rights that he’s worked hard to earn. A 7th grader from Glastonbury, Daniel just won the “Youth Fishing Passport Fishing Challenge”.
The challenge was created a decade ago by Mike Beauchene, the supervising fisheries biologist from the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.
"It’s essentially a year-long scavenger hunt where kids go out and try to catch as many fish on our list as possible," Beauchene said.
While Connecticut waters are stocked with around 100 different species, the Youth Fishing Challenge asks young anglers to catch 22 different types; Echols did just that, and that was unprecedented.
Echols, who also loves to play Soccer and Hockey said, “being out on the water is fun and I like being out in nature, I like how it’s a challenge.”
Catching everything from Blue Fish to Yellow Perch, Daniel’s father, Chandler, has taken his son to every corner of Connecticut to help accomplish the quest.
"You have to learn the different fish, you have to learn how to handle each fish – the different techniques for each fish, and he did it," Chandler said.
Beauchene added that the hope is more young anglers will start getting involved in fishing across the state.
“What comes out of it is a lot of great photos and a lot of great memories,” he said.
"It was really fun, and I was excited that I caught them all," Chandler said.
To learn more about the Youth Fishing Passport Fishing Challenge click here.
Jimmy Altman is a reporter at FOX61 News. He can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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