Student art contest for Florida’s fresh and saltwater fish accepting entries

Highlighting the fish that make the Sunshine State special is the focus of the Florida State Fish Art Contest, which is part of a related national competition.

Students from kindergarten through high school can create and enter an original piece of artwork for free in the Florida Native Fish Award contest to win state and national honors and prizes.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is teaming with the Wildlife Forever’s national Fish Art Contest, in which participating students will qualify by submitting a Florida native species from the specified list below. The goal of the Florida Native Fish Award is to celebrate fish species native to Florida’s inland and marine waters.

“The Florida Native Fish Award is an amazing opportunity to introduce students to some of Florida’s most iconic native fish species in a fun and creative way,” said Sonya Rood, FWC’s commissioner. “This award helps connect Florida’s students to the fish species that help make Florida the ‘Fishing Capital of the World,’ which is critical in inspiring the next generation of fisheries resource stewards.”

A first-place winner and one runner-up will be selected for each of four grade brackets, including kindergarten through third grade, fourth through sixth grade, seventh through ninth grade, and tenth through 12th grade.

Prizes include those for illustrating the best freshwater fish species from the following: largemouth bass, striped bass, black crappie, bluegill, redear sunfish, spotted sunfish, channel catfish, Florida gar, chain pickerel, and bowfin.

The saltwater fish categories include snook, redfish, spotted seatrout, flounder, tarpon, mahi-mahi, Spanish mackerel, hogfish, queen snapper, and black grouper.

Also necessary is less than one page of a creative essay on the species displayed in the artwork, as well as the entry form.

Florida students should submit their entry consisting of the above, here.

Digital artwork will not be accepted; pieces must be created with traditional media.

The deadline to enter is Feb. 28, 2024.

State first-place winners will have a combination of awards and honors depending on their age bracket including T-shirts with their winning image on them, their art published in the FWC’s freshwater or saltwater regulations guide, and the works will be on display at the FWC headquarters in Tallahassee.

All first-place winners will advance to 2024’s national competition to be judged for top prizes, including best in show.

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