DNR Ups Walleye Bag Limits to 2 on 21 Northern Wis. Lakes

By: WSAW Staff Email
By: WSAW Staff Email

Beginning Tuesday, June 10, the Department of Natural Resources will raise anglers' daily bag limits from one walleye per day to two walleye per day in 21 northern Wisconsin lakes.

Oneida County
BUCKSKIN
CLEAR
Tomahawk Treaty Chain

Price County
BUTTERNUT
ROUND

Sawyer County
BARBER
DURPHEE
LITTLE ROUND
LOST LAND
SAND

Vilas County
ALLEQUASH
ANVIL
BIG ARBOR VITAE
BIG GIBSON
BIG L (BOULDER JCT)
BIG MUSKELLUNGE
ISLAND
STAR
W BAY

Washburn
BIRCH
LONG

The department said in a news release, they routinely adjusts bag limits in late May or early June after tribal harvest activity diminishes, and did so for 447 lakes on May 23.

Under rules in place at that time, the department was not able to consider changes for the 21 lakes affected in Monday's announcement.

"By using angler harvest trend data from over 30 years of creel surveys in the Wisconsin Ceded Territory, in addition to actual and anticipated tribal harvest, we can now fine-tune bag limit adjustments, providing more opportunities for anglers while continuing to sustain a healthy fishery for all to enjoy," said Joe Hennessy, DNR Treaty Fisheries coordinator.

Because angler success rates are highest in May, more than 25 percent of annual walleye harvest normally occurs during that month. This rule allows department biologists to consider the impacts a one-fish daily bag limit during the month of May had on total annual angler harvest and set an appropriate bag limit for the remainder of the fishing season.

"The goal is to sufficiently protect walleye populations while not being unnecessarily restrictive on individual anglers," said DNR Sec. Cathy Stepp. "We aim to encourage participation in fishing, while in turn benefitting local businesses that provide equipment, lodging, and other support to local and visiting anglers."

The emergency rule is in place for this year only and will affect only angler harvest, not tribal harvest.

The DNR said they will continue discussions with Chippewa tribes about long-term efforts that will yield less fluctuation and more consistency with angler regulations while still effectively managing and protecting the resource for all to enjoy.


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