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Changes to Minnesota's state record fish program to meet anglers' interest in catch-and-release include an additional 18 species, from walleye to channel catfish.

The new rules went into effect Friday.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources said the additions also recognize the interest in native rough fish.

"Angler stories and photos of the huge fish caught from Minnesota's lakes, rivers and streams generate major excitement," said Mandy Erickson, fisheries program consultant, in a news release. "We also hope the buzz around some of these records brings more attention to native rough fish, which, besides being fun to catch, are important to aquatic ecosystems."

The additional catch-and-release species are blue sucker, bigmouth buffalo, bowfin, brook trout, brown trout, channel catfish and freshwater drum.

Also added were lake trout, largemouth bass, longnose gar, rainbow trout, sauger, shortnose gar, shovelnose sturgeon, smallmouth bass, smallmouth buffalo tiger muskellunge and walleye.

Muskie, northern pike, lake sturgeon and flathead catfish will remain eligible for the catch-and-release record books.

There will be a minimum fish length requirement for new submissions.

"Before making these changes we discussed possible approaches with angling organizations and tribal interests, and sought input via fishing-related Facebook pages and DNR email lists. Overall, we received very positive feedback," Erickson said.

See more on the records and rules at