Hundreds of walleye waters offer great fishing in 2018

MADISON, WI - Anglers in Wisconsin will likely find far more walleye waters to fish than they'll have time to visit in 2018.
"Walleye are found naturally in our larger lakes and rivers and Wisconsin represents the heart of North American walleye distribution," said Justine Hasz, Wisconsin's Fisheries Director.
"Larger lakes all over Wisconsin, especially in northern Wisconsin, provide great walleye fishing and the same is true for our major rivers, from the Mississippi to the Wisconsin to the Wolf and Fox River systems."
About half of Wisconsin's 1,000 lakes with walleye sustain their populations through natural reproduction. These waters do not need to be stocked and produce walleye populations that are 3 to 10 times higher than waters that are stocked at even the highest levels.
This year anglers will have more walleye fishing opportunities thanks to Gov. Scott Walker's Wisconsin Walleye Initiative, which seeks to stock larger extended growth fingerling walleye in some lakes to jumpstart natural reproduction and in others to enhance fishing in waters that have long relied on stocking for walleye fishing opportunities.
More than 1.275 million extended growth walleye fingerlings were stocked in 2013 and 2014 under the initiative and should be catchable size now.
Learn more about "Walleye and Wisconsin" in this special 2015 Wisconsin Natural Resources magazine issue.
Try these resources to find a walleye water to fish in 2018:
* List of key Wisconsin naturally reproducing walleye waters.
* List of waters receiving Fingerling stocked in 2014.
* Fingerling stocked in 2013 under the Wisconsin Walleye Initiative.
* Wisconsin Fishing Report walleye forecast.

SOURCE: Wisconsin DNR


Northern pike added to state’s catch-and-release record program

Anglers who catch and release northern pike can earn state records through an expansion of a Minnesota Department of Natural Resources record fish program that previously included only lake sturgeon, muskellunge and flathead catfish in the catch-and-release category.
“These catch-and-release records have really caught on and now we’re adding northern pike into the mix,” said Mike Kurre, DNR mentoring program coordinator. “Photos of these fish have ramped up awareness of Minnesota as a go-to state for trophy fish.”
This category of the DNR’s record fish program lets anglers submit photos and documentation of potential record fish they catch and release. Anglers send one photo of the fish displayed alongside a measuring stick, ruler or tape, and one photo of the angler with the fish.
“Catch-and-release fishing remains a time-honored tradition and when anglers release these large fish they give others the chance to catch them later,” Kurre said.
Die-hard anglers and DNR Fisheries staff pushed for the record category, added in 2016, to recognize people who catch trophy fish while also supporting the catch-and-release ethic already shared by many anglers. The option remains to participate in the traditional category of records based on certified weight of fish caught and kept.
To be eligible for any state record, anglers must obtain a valid license and the fish must be caught in season. Anglers may fish for a species only when a season is open, even when catch-and-release angling.
Detailed guidelines for participating in both the catch-and-release and certified weight categories can be found at mndnr.gov/recordfish. Fishing regulations and season dates can be found at mndnr.gov/fishmn.
Anglers who catch large fish also have the option of participating in the Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame’s Master Angler program, which recognizes 60 fish species. Information about that program is available at fishinghalloffamemn.com/master-anglers.

SOURCE: Minnesota DNR

Anglers reminded to keep paper copy of license

MADISON, WI - Anglers, who fish Wisconsin's boundary and outlying waters, are reminded to carry a paper copy of their fishing license under law enforcement agreements with the neighboring states and federal agencies that share enforcement duties on these waters, according to Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Chief Warden Todd Schaller.
Schaller said the reason the paper copy is required of all anglers is because other states' and federal officers with jurisdiction on these waters do not have access to Wisconsin's Go Wild or the driver's license information to confirm fishing licenses. Use this handy step-by-step guide to help you reprint your license on your own.
"The best advice is to print several copies of your fishing license and keep them with your fishing and boating equipment, and then forget about it because you'll be covered regardless of the home agency of the patrol officer on the water," Schaller said. "After that, your main focus is to enjoy your fishing trips."

SOURCE: Wisconsin DNR


DNR announces temporary, seasonal fishing closures

To protect spawning fish, the Department of Natural Resources has begun to close certain portions of some Minnesota waters. The closings are routine and based on local conditions.
Closings occur each year as ice-out begins and waters begin to warm. The DNR closes the spawning locations to fishing only where habitat is limited and fish are very concentrated in one location, such as a river or the bay of a lake where fish are congregated during spawning.
Areas closed to fishing are listed and updated on the DNR website at mndnr.gov/fishmn.
Portions of waters closed to fishing also are posted at access sites and in other visible areas. Anglers may fish in areas that are not posted.

SOURCE: Minnesota DNR

740,000 catchable size trout stocking underway

MADISON, WI - Stocking trucks are rolling from state fish hatcheries now and will deliver about 740,000 catchable-size trout to inland waters in time for opening day of the 2018 regular inland trout season.
A total of 275,000 rainbow, 200,000 brown, 215,000 brook and 50,000 lake trout will be stocked in more than 400 waters by May 5, according to Jeff Mosher, Department of Natural Resources fish production manager.
"Gear up Wisconsin! Fish hauling trucks will be coming to publicly accessible waterbodies near you in time for the May fifth opener," Mosher said. "We're glad to be able to provide exciting fishing opportunities for anglers of all ages, and we thank you for your continued support in making Wisconsin one of America's best fishing destinations!"
The fish to be stocked out were raised at Nevin Fish Hatchery, Osceola Fish Hatchery and St. Croix Falls Hatchery. A complete list of 2018 inland waters expected to receive catchable trout can be found by visiting the DNR website, and searching "Catchable Trout."
Additional fish were raised and are being stocked through cooperative rearing agreements with fishing clubs. About 70,000 fish will be stocked in urban fishing waters, small lakes and ponds cooperatively managed with the local municipality and used as a place for fishing clinics and kids fishing.
Many urban waters have no length limits and a special season for juveniles 15 years of age and younger as well as certain disabled anglers. For 2018, the special season started March 10, and runs through April 27. These waters also have a daily bag limit of three trout, one gamefish and 10 panfish. For details, search the DNR website, dnr.wi.gov, for "Fishing Regulations" and look under Urban and Community Fishing.

SOURCE: Wisconsin DNR


La Crosse's Monsoor 91st in FLW Tour Qualifier

SOMERSET, KY – Friday, April 13, certainly wasn't lucky for La Crosse professional bass fisherman Tom Monsoor.
The veteran Monsoor finished in 91st place in the FLW Tour Qualifier on Lake Cumberland in Somerset, KY.
Monsoor caught a five fish limit weighing 13 pounds, 2 ounces in Thursday's opening round, good enough for 42nd place. However, he managed only  9-14 on Friday, despite another five fish limit. His two-day total was 23-0.
Pro Andy Morgan of Dayton, TN, took a 15-12 limit to the scale Friday to maintain his lead after Day Two. Morgan’s two-day total of 10 bass weighing 34-11 gave him a 1-6 advantage heading into the third day of competition in the four-day event that features a field of 183 of the world’s best bass fishing professionals and co-anglers competing for top awards of up to $125,000 cash in the pro division and up to $25,000 cash in the co-angler division.
The field is now cut to the top 30 pros as anglers resume competition Saturday morning, with only the top 10 pros advancing to Championship Sunday.
Monsoor finished 59th in the FLW Tour Qualifier on Lake Lanier in Gainesville GA, recently, pocketing a $10,000 check.

Get fishing questions answered or license at Fish Minnesota

What species can I fish for? What kind of bait is legal? What kind of fish can I keep?
Don’t have a fishing regulations book handy? No problem. You can find the answer at Fish Minnesota, the fishing information webpage at mndnr.gov/fishmn.
Fish Minnesota is a mobile-friendly destination for information on when, where and how to fish. Users also will find a link to LakeFinder, which provides detailed information on more than 4,500 lakes throughout the state.
“Fish Minnesota has become a go-to resource for many anglers because it can be accessed anywhere there is mobile phone service,” said Al Stevens, DNR fisheries lake and stream survey program consultant. “In addition to fishing regulations, there is a trove of information available through Fish Minnesota, including maps and stocking reports.”
In a rush to get on the water? Fish Minnesota includes a link to purchase a fishing license with your smartphone. Following the license purchase, buyers receive a confirmation email or text that can be presented to a state conservation officer as proof of a valid fishing license.
The printed 2018 Minnesota Fishing Regulations booklet is available anywhere DNR licenses are sold and at mndnr.gov/fishmn.

SOURCE: Minnesota DNR