Amazing Angler On Quest to Catch Every Fish in Minnesota
If you're like most Minnesotans, you're happy catching a few fish when you head out on the water. But this amazing angler won't rest until he's caught EVERY fish in Minnesota.
Well, let's clarify that a bit, shall we? Cayden Hutmacher, who's from Ottertail, Minnesota (a little under three hours northwest of the Twin Cities), isn't out to catch every single fish in all of our 10,000 lakes. But he IS on a mission to catch every species of fish native to the Bold North.
And he's already caught a LOT of them. According to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR), there are 63 species of catchable fish native to the Land of 10,000 Lakes. (Technically, there are over 138! But many of them are too small to catch with a rod and reel.)
And so far, Cayden-- who's just 18-year-old, mind you-- has already caught 54 of those 63 native species, the May/June 2023 edition of the DNR's Minnesota Conservation Volunteer (MCV) publication noted.
Cayden's been on this mission since 2012 when he was just 7 years old. That's when he won the title of Master Angler in the Master Angler Program run by the Minnesota Fishing Museum and Hall of Fame. He caught an 8-and-a-half-inch pumpkinseed (also known as a pond perch) back then and was hooked. Literally.
The DNR MCV said there are a few rules Cayden's dad set that he is following in his quest to catch every species of fish:
- All fish have to be landed in Minnesota waters. They have to be fairly caught with a hook and line—no snags. And all fish caught must be released again.
Minnesota DNR officials quoted in the MCV say they're impressed with Cayden's fish tally so far, though they say knocking EVERY species off his list will be a tall order. Some of the rare species of fish left on the list are only found in very, small specific areas of Minnesota.
"I don’t know if it’ll take the rest of my life," Cayden told the DNR. "It might take that whole time, but we’ll get it done. The biggest thing is that I hope I can do it with my dad."
FOX-9 TV in Minneapolis says that Cayden posts many videos of his catches on his brother's YouTube Channel, Things Chris Does. (check one out below.) And keep scrolling to check out some of the record fish ever caught here in Minnesota!