FLW Tour season ends abruptly for La Crosse's Monsoor
PLATTSBURGH, NY - La Crosse professional bass fisherman Tom Monsoor isn't going to the FLW Cup, the "Super Bowl" of world bass fishing, in August. Monsoor finished in 155th place in Friday's second round of the season-ending FLW Tour Qualifier on Lake Champlain in Plattsburgh, NY. Monsoor caught only four fish weighing 8 pounds, 7 ounces for a two-day total of 20-13, and dropping him into 57th place in the final standings. The veteran FLW Tour pro, in his 16th season, was in 24th place in the standings entering the four-day event to determine the top 42 qualifiers for the FLW Cup in August. Tyler Stewart of West Monroe, LA, leads the event with 40 pounds, 1 ounce.
La Crosse's Monsoor faces uphill climb in final FLW Qualifier
PLATTSBURGH, NY - La Crosse professional bass fisherman Tom Monsoor faces an uphill battle entering Friday's second round of the season-ending FLW Tour Qualifier on Lake Champlain in Plattsburgh, NY. Monsoor caught a five fish limit weighing 12 pounds, 6 ounces on Thursday, leaving him in 150th place. The veteran FLW Tour pro, in his 16th season, was in 24th place in the standings entering the four-day event to determine the top 42 qualifiers for the FLW Cup in August. However, his chances aren't good. Tyler Stewart of West Monroe, LA, leads the tournament with 5 fish totaling 22-3. Three anglers share 42nd place with 16-14, so Monsoor must make up at least 4 1/2 pounds to make it to Saturday's semifinal round.
State records topple for 2 species of Minnesota fish
Anglers have set two Minnesota state records for whitefish and golden redhorse. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources certified a record 13-pound, 9-ounce whitefish caught by an Oklahoma angler ice fishing on Lake of the Woods, and a 4-pound, 13-ounce golden redhorse caught by an angler who beat his own state record. The DNR certifies state record fish in two categories: for fish caught and kept; and for caught and released northern pike, muskellunge, lake sturgeon and flathead catfish. The Oklahoma angler, Billy King, (pictured) was getting an introduction to Minnesota ice fishing with two other anglers April 6. They were catching walleye, sauger and tulibee, and in the evening were fishing near a sandbar for the sunset walleye bite on Lake of the Woods. Despite the others initially catching more fish, King stuck to his spot on the ice and was rewarded with not only the biggest walleye of the day, but soon after, the huge whitefish. “This turned out to be the trip of a lifetime and I have to say that everyone was so nice. Not just in relation to the potential new state record, but everyone was so polite and welcoming. It made the trip all the more enjoyable,” King said. Ethan Rasset – already a state record holder for golden redhorse – was fishing for redhorse March 24, on the Otter Tail River with a friend from college. Rasset caught the record 4-pound, 13-ounce fish with a chartreuse curly-tail artificial lure, on a shallow flat with rubble that had produced a few smaller golden redhorse earlier in the morning. His previous record was a 4-pound, 8-ounce golden redhorse he caught in April 2018 on the Otter Tail River. Rasset said he was quite excited when he suspected he may have broken his own record. “Very few people can say they have broken a state record twice!,” Rasset said. Current records and information about how to submit documentation for a record fish are available at mndnr.gov/recordfish.
SOURCE: Minnesota DNR
La Crosse pro bass angler needs solid finish this week
PLATTSBURGH, NY - Tom Monsoor (pictured) is no stranger to Lake Champlain in Plattsburgh, NY, site of this week's last stop of the regular season on the FLW Tour. The La Crosse veteran professional bass angler is making his sixth FLW Tour appearance on Lake Champlain. Monsoor's best finish was in 2006 when he finished 18th. Monsoor, in his 16th year on the FLW Tour, is currently in 24th place in the 170-angler FLW Tour standings this season and must have a solid finish this week to advance to another FLW Cup in August. Monsoor has appeared in six previous FLW Cups, his last in 2014. John Cox of Debary, FL, is atop the 2019 standings with 1,057 points. Monsoor has 873 points. Monsoor has won $50,000 this year, including a sixth-place finish and $18,000 on Cherokee Lake in Jefferson City, TN, in April. He has collected $931,427 during his long FLW career. Monsoor's goal is to finish at least 42nd this week. That's how many anglers qualify for the FLW Cup. "I have to finish at least 42nd. Then I'm in for sure," he said Wednesday morning. "I could make it maybe if I finish in the top 50, but the standings move around so much." Monsoor took 10 totes and 50 poles with him, but said his patented swim jig was working the best during pre-fishing earlier this week. " I caught a few fish on other things, but not that great," he said. "We'll just have to wait and see," adding the bite has been OK, but nothing great during practice.
Additional public meeting set on statewide inland trout management plan
SOURCE: Wisconsin DNR
Bowfishing Association of America tournament scheduled June 29
SOURCE: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Releasing big sunfish helps protect against stunted population
Minnesota anglers harvest around 16 million sunfish each year, making them the state's most harvested fish. To protect big sunfish and avoid stunted populations of sunfish, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is encouraging anglers to release large sunfish, and keep smaller fish for eating. Sunfish spawn in large nesting colonies during the spring and early summer. Parental male sunfish build and defend nests. Females will select a male, lay eggs, and leave them for the male to protect and fan with his fins. These nest-building male sunfish play an important role in repopulation with the largest sunfish often getting the best spawning sites. When anglers keep only the largest sunfish, which are usually males guarding nests, the remaining small males don’t need to compete with larger males to spawn. Instead of growing, they devote their energy to spawning at younger ages and smaller sizes. Spawning sunfish are particularly prone to over harvest because they are very aggressive while defending a nest. Anglers can help by releasing spawning sunfish, especially large, nesting males. Released fish have a high survival rate and will typically return to their nests to complete the spawning cycle. Minnesota angler attitude surveys between 1987 and 2017 found that anglers were generally satisfied with the number of sunfish they caught, but were often dissatisfied with fish size. “To maintain a high quality fishery, it’s important that anglers, guides and resort owners, all understand the important role these large nesting fish play, and that we all work together to exercise a conservation ethic that ensures these fish thrive,” said Grand Rapids area fisheries supervisor Dave Weitzel. Protecting larger spawning sunfish is supported by a study of the Fuller Tackle Contest in the Park Rapids area. The study found that until 1953, mean weight of entered bluegills fluctuated around 1.3 pounds. After 1953, mean weight declined. The change in fish weight coincides well with the 1954 regulation change that allowed for year around sunfish angling, and no longer protected the spawning season. Since the 1954 regulation change, sunfish numbers have generally increased in DNR lake surveys, suggesting an overall increase in sunfish densities - a trend often linked to a decline in size. More information about sunfish biology and management can be found at mndnr.gov/fish/sunfish.