The Toledo Bend Lunker Bass Program was initiated by the Sabine River Authority of Louisiana in 1992 and continued by Toledo Town & Tackle in 1998. Sponsorship was transferred to the Toledo Bend Lake Association in 2005. From the 1992 through the 2013-2014 season, more than 590 Lunkers have been caught and released through the Program. Since 2005, TBLA has awarded 372 Lunker Replicas.
The goal of the Program is to encourage the return of trophy fish to the lake by rewarding anglers a replica bass for catching and releasing their Toledo Bend Lunker back to the lake. TBLA hopes it will spawn and produce more potential lunkers and continue to grow and be caught again by another angler. To qualify for a Lunker Bass replica, the fish must be weighed, registered, and released alive by TBLA or its representative. TBLA provides an angler a free fiberglass replica for any bass weighing 10 pounds or more, provided the following rules are met:
Our Weigh Stations Include:
The 2016-2017 TBLA Lunker Bass Program runs from Friday, May 20, 2016, to Thursday, May 18, 2017. TBLA will award the lunker replicas at the Sealy Outdoors Toledo Bend Big Bass Splash in May at Cypress Bend Park Pavilion. The awards should start between 2 and 3 after the final weigh-in! Recipients are encouraged to attend the awards ceremony. Replicas are produced for the Toledo Bend Lake Association by Scottie's Taxidermy.
The Toledo Bend Lake Association awarded 139 lunker bass replicas to anglers at the Sealy Outdoors Big Bass Splash at Cypress Bend Park on Sunday, May 22, 2016. This is the fourth year in a row that the record number of lunkers has been broken. This Lunker year, the fish were caught in Toledo Bend from May 15, 2015, to May 19, 2016. Mrs. Dinah Medine, Coordinator of the TBLA Lunker Bass Program, presented the replicas after the final weigh-in of the Sealy Outdoors tournament.
Among the 139 fish caught: 93 were in the 10-lb. class; 31 were in the 11-lb. class; 12 meet the 12-lb. class; 2 were in the 13-lb. class; and the largest fish weighed in at 14.16 lbs. Fourteen lunkers moved into the Top 100 largest reported bass caught on the Bend, and the anglers were awarded a Top 100 hat and certificate by Mrs. Linda Curtis-Sparks, Director of The Sabine Parish Tourist Commission.
Derek Mong of Many, LA, caught and registered three lunkers this year--while three fishermen—Darold Gleason of Leesville, LA, Dennis Blankenship of Pleasant Hill, LA, and Rudy Vaussine of Lake Charles, LA, caught and registered two lunkers each this year. Ninety-eight anglers from LA caught and registered lunkers, 36 were from TX, and 5 from out of state.
You can see photos of the anglers and their lunkers by going to the Toledo Bend Lunker Bass Program on Facebook, and a list of them is posted on the Toledo Bend Lake Association’s Website at www.toledobendlakeassociation.com.
All fish caught and registered through the Toledo Bend Lunker Bass Program were tagged and returned to the lake to spawn and be caught again. Fourteen previously tagged fish were caught again this year. Scottie Lucas, email@example.com, who produced each of the life-like replicas awarded by the Association, displayed all 139 reproductions on a single wall. He stated that he had reproduced well over a hundred 7.5 -10 lb. replicas of fish caught during the time period in addition to those awarded on Sunday, so there are many more lunkers to be caught. The TBLA Lunker Bass Program is the signature conservation program among many projects sponsored by the Toledo Bend Lake Association meet its mission: “to improve the quality of Toledo Bend Lake and the amenities surrounding it.”
TBLA thanks our Official Weigh Stations: Toledo Town and Tackle and Buckeye Landing in LA; and Fin & Feather Resort; Keith’s Toledo Bend Tackle and Huxley Bay Marina in TX for supporting our Lunker Bass Program. In addition, TBLA thanks the Sabine River Authority-LA staff for helping with the set-up for the event and Sealy Outdoors for hosting our awards ceremony.
Congratulations to all 795 anglers who have earned lunker replicas since the program began in 1992 . . . let’s keep the Nation’s #1 bass fishing lake as designated by Bassmaster’s Magazine booming with lunkers for next year’s awards!
2015-2016 Lunkers Presented on May 22, 2016, to 139 Anglers
Toledo Bend Lake Association