2019 Casco Bay Bluefin Bonanza Tournament Rules

Spring Point Marina, 1 Spring Point Drive, South Portland, Maine August 1-3, 2019




All participating vessels must be registered to the Casco Bay Bluefin Bonanza Tournament by 7:00 pm on the evening of the Tournament.


A representative from each registered vessel must be present and signed in prior to the Captain’s Meeting held on Wednesday, July 31, 2019. The vessel representative must be at least 18 years old.

Any vessel that is not registered prior to 7:00 p.m. at the Tournament Tent on that date will not be eligible to fish for that tournament year


General Compliance


Tournament participants are responsible for obtaining and becoming familiar with tournament rules and all applicable State and Federal laws, rules and regulations.


All Tournament participants must be in full legal compliance with Maine Department of Marine Resources and NOAA/ National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) regulations and must possess any and all required state and federal licenses and permits required by these agencies.


All entrants must be properly licensed to fish in the Atlantic Tunas General Category or HMS Charter/Headboat Category with commercial endorsement under NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) regulations and must meet all U.S. Coast Guard requirements. Note: All vessels must also possess a Maine Landing Permit. https://www.maine.gov/dmr/commercial-fishing/index.html




There are no limitations on fishing area, except that tournament participants must fish in a location that allows fish to be landed at Spring Point Marina.



There is no weather committee. The decision to fish is that of the captains and participants, and is strictly at their own risk. Upon signing the Waiver of Damages, the Casco Bay Bluefin Bonanza Tournament cannot be held liable.




Fishing may commence (lines in) Thursday, August 1 at 12:01a.m. and will conclude (lines out) at 4:00 p.m. Saturday, August 3.


All hookups should be reported or relayed to the Tournament Weighmaster or other boats in the area as soon as possible when the fish is hooked. Tournament channel - 8


Once fish is landed (subdued, tail-roped and is hanging from or lying on the deck) vessels MUST radio or relay notification to the Tournament Weighmaster, or other boats in the area that the fish is in contention. Tournament channel - 8. Participants are also encouraged to take a digital photo of the fish with date and time stamp.


All participants are expected to operate in the spirit of cooperation and fair play. At the request of a boat fighting a fish, all others must stay clear.


General Category Rules apply with the following exceptions: a) no electric harpoons, b) no aerial reconnaissance allowed and c) all tuna are to be hooked, fought and brought to boat side only by manually operated rod and reel (hand line or conventional harpoon prohibited except cockpit harpoon may be used to land fish). Power driven reels or devices of any kind are prohibited, except when used as kite rods or as required by disabled anglers. This includes, but is not limited to, motor, hydraulic or electrically driven devices. Fish may be fought from the rod holder or freestanding. Fish may be fought by multiple anglers.


All tuna must measure 73 inches curved fork length (CFL) or greater to be eligible for entry in this category. Please check updated regulations on the NMFS website: https://hmspermits.noaa.gov




Tournament Weighmasters are available Thursday and Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., and Saturday from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.


• Walt Golet @ 207-351-5413 • Brian Jones @ (207) 310-8814 • Mike Soucy @ 207-289-0500


Tournament scales will close at 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, August 3, 2019, and all vessels with fish to be weighed must be inside Spring Point Light by 5 p.m. and tied to the scales dock at Spring Point Marina (rafting is acceptable) by 6:00 p.m. Any vessel with a fish to be weighed that is not tied or rafted to the scales dock by 6:00 p.m. will not be accepted (Tournament committee discretion).


All eligible fish must be weighed at Spring Point Marina and must be delivered on the tournament registered vessel upon which it was boated. Per NOAA/NMFS regulations, transfer of fish between vessels is prohibited.


In order to be eligible, heads and tails must be left on prior to weighing.


Fish will be weighed by the tail using a tail rope provided by the Tournament.


Participants are asked (and advised) to bring innards and gill plates. They will be weighed separately and included in the final weight, if detached.


Please cooperate with the Weighmaster in filling and returning your weigh-in slips. Please do not leave the weigh stand until your slip is filled in and signed.


By signing the weight slip you acknowledge that you have accepted the weight of your fish as final and correct. In the event of a tie in weight, any prize due will be awarded to the first fish weighed by the official Tournament scales.


All tuna are subject to examination by the Tournament Rules Committee.


Any fish found to have bullet wounds or any unnatural damage will be disqualified (This does not include gaff and/or harpoon marks).


Disposal of fish and/or fish parts is the responsibility of the angler after the Weigh Master releases the fish. DO NOT dump fish entrails and/or heads at the marina. In most cases innards and head will be retained by weigh master to researchers for research purposes and then become their responsibility for disposal.


Once released by the weigh master, participants may sell their catch dockside to the local buyer of their choice.


Note: When traveling in Portland Harbor, the Tournament committee requests that all vessels observe State of Maine rules and regulations. Please obey ‘No Wake Zones’ and be mindful of lobster traps when traveling the inner and outer harbor waters.




All fish weighed in for prize eligibility must be caught from a boat registered in this tournament by 7:00 p.m. on the eve of the tournament. In the event of mechanical failure, PRIOR to that time and date, Captain and Crew may request that they fish an alternative boat. Any such changes MUST be approved by the Tournament Rules Committee.


A person or vessel is ineligible to obtain or possess any type of award or certification associated with this tournament unless the fish submitted for consideration is caught legally and under compliance of tournament rules and State and Federal laws.


In the event that one or more rule provisions appear to be in conflict, the most restrictive rule applies and is to be determined by the Tournament Rules Committee.


All landed fish are subject to examination by the Tournament Rules Committee and/or Weigh Master.


The Tournament Rules Committee has final and sole authority to resolve questions and/or issues that arise. All committee decisions are final. Protests must be in writing and submitted by the close of scales on Saturday, August 3, 2019.


Protests/Grievances - Protests shall be called to the attention of the Rules Committee via radio, by contacting the telephone numbers provided, or in person upon arrival at the dock. Protests must be written in detail and turned into the Rules Committee by 8:30 p.m. the day of the incident (exception: Saturday, August 3, 2019 by 6:00 p.m.). All decisions made by the Rules Committee are final.



If, at any time during the Tournament, NOAA/NMFS declares that the quota is filled and fishing must cease, the tournament will be concluded and awards presented that evening. In the event of an early conclusion, please direct all questions/concerns to the Rules Committee.



Prize distribution will be awarded for tournament year 2019 as follows: 1st Place: $6,250 plus trophy for (1) year; 2nd Place: $3,250; 3rd Place: $1,500; 4th Place: $1,000; 5th Place: $500; Smallest Fish: $250.
* If all 40 entry slots are not filled, prize money will be reduced proportionately.


In the event of NO FISH, all prize money will be added to the 2020 Tournament. If only one (1) fish is landed, $12,500 and trophy for (1) year will be awarded. If less than five (5) fish are caught, all prize winnings will be awarded proportionately.