Poster contest hopes to inspires young anglers |

Poster contest hopes to inspires young anglers

by Heather Swanson
For the Appeal
Jezalea Segura, 10, shows the artwork she created for the Nevada Department of Wildlife Free Fishing Day Poster Contest. Jezalea, who won a fishing kit for her first-runner-up entry, hopes to try fishing for the first time this summer. Cathleen Allison/Nevada Appeal

Lack of fishing experience didn’t stop one Carson City fourth-grader from taking second place in Nevada’s 2007 Free Fishing Day poster contest.

Jezalea Segura, 10, in Sue Strekal’s class at Capital Christian School, was runner-up in the contest, despite having only been fishing once. That may change, however, thanks to the rod and reel she was awarded for her efforts.

Jezalea says she now hopes to fish more often, noting her sole experience “was pretty peaceful.”

The poster contest, sponsored by the state Department of Wildlife, asked students to represent the theme “Fishing is Fantastic,” and was open to fourth- and fifth-graders across the state.

The first-place winner was Alexandra Dumitru, a fifth-grader from Mabel Hoggard Math and Science Magnet School in Las Vegas. Posters were judged for color and originality by six wildlife employees.

Jezalea’s poster was inspired by the department’s Trout in the Classroom program. Students in the course are given 250 trout eggs to hatch in a classroom fish tank in an effort to teach them about some of Nevada’s wildlife. Because Capital Christian School is a private school and not eligible for public funding, the school had to raise $600 to purchase the aquarium and chiller, according to fifth-grade teacher Sharon Yurtinus.

Yurtinus said the program was a huge help in teaching the children about the state’s wildlife, and says the school plans to participate every year now that they have the necessary equipment.

“I think it was a good hands-on learning experience,” said Yurtinus.

She added the school is grateful to the department of wildlife for assisting it, despite its private-school status.

Yurtinus said it’s important to teach the children that despite being a desert, Nevada does have a lot of wildlife to offer.

“We still have a lot of rivers and streams,” she said, noting trout are very common.

“I learned, I think, a lot more than just sitting there at my desk,” Jezalea said. “It was pretty fun to watch them hatch.”

Nevada’s fish

Nevada is home to more than 200 lakes and reservoirs and 600 streams and rivers, offering nearly 400,000 acres of fishing, according to the state Department of Wildlife.

Common species of fish include native cutthroat, redband, and rainbow trout, non-native brown, brook, and mackinaw trout, largemouth bass and channel catfish, as well as large stripers.


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