Out here in Southern California we have the Redears and Florida Strain Bluegill in our public waters. I notice with the Redears that they tend to be longer and thinner profiled then the 'gills. Thus, I've caught 10-11-inchers that were barely a pound. Plus the REdear aren't nearly as colorful as the Gills and probably wouldn't make as visually attractive a mount. My biggest Gill was an 11.25 incher that weighed in at 1 pound 11 ounces. However, I would consider a trophy in Southern Cali in the 2-pound range. Every year I read about and see pictures of 'gills or Redear pushing 3-pounds. Wow, the gills have these huge humps on their heads and are so thick. The lake record for the local lake is in the four pound range and is mounted above the counter in the marina store......WOW!!!!!
well as far as trophy meaning citation,depends on where you are i guess,i fish here in VA and sometimes visit my girls parent in WV and fish there,here in VA it must be 11 inches or 1lb. in wv it only needs to be 10 inches or 1lb.
you can check with you local dept. of game and inland fisheries for more info.
well when I say trophy, I picture a wallhanger fish, so, that being said, a trophy (wallhanger) BLUEGILL for me would be 3lbs., a trophy (wallhanger) SHELLCRACKER would be around the 4lb. mark, and I already have 5 of those getting mounted......I would really like to have a wallhanger yellow perch, I found some 2 lb.'ers here, and one of them would be beautiful mounted!!!
Here in Connecticut, the DEP considers Bluegill of 10" or more a Trophy. Very few of our waters produce Bluegill of that size. I have caught quite a few between 9" and 10.5", and my goal is to get an 11" Bluegill through the ice.
Right now, the bigger shellcrackers are schooled up in some of the deep holes in the river, you just have to find them, I havent tried them yet, too busy trying to outsmart these deer and pigs, but some people are catching some decent ones.
In my opinion, it is a waste to kill the fish just for a trophy. I would hope that you would release the monsters to keep contributing to the gene pool (and for further sport) while using measurements and pictures for creating your wall mount.
I don't have any problem with keeping the 7-9 inchers for eating but lets leave the real biggies for future sport.
I think that in most waters, nationwide, gills exceeding 10 inches in length would be considered exceptional fish. Some lakes got em, some don't. Most trophy bluegills in my Mid Atlantic region come from farmponds and millponds. I can thinks of several public venues in my region that produce big fish...Deep Creek Lake in west MD, Rocky Gap St Park, Cunning ham Falls Lake in Thurmont , MD, Trap Pond St Park, DEL., and the tidewater lakes just west of Norfolk, VA. Also, some small, overlooked public lakes and ponds that are county or municipally owned can cough up some tankers. Keep you eyes open and you'll likely find some great water. I'm still looking for a 12 incher!