Reporting fish die-offs helps DNR, others respond when needed

Anyone who finds several or more dead fish in a lake or stream can help by reporting these fish die-offs, which happen occasionally and usually result from natural causes.
“It can be unsettling and concerning to find a number of dead fish,” said Tom Burri, limnology consultant with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, who deals with water quality issues related to fisheries. “We hope people will help us out by reporting dead fish right away so we can determine if an investigation is needed.”
People should call the state duty officer at 651-649-5451 or 800-422-0798 to report fish die-offs. Doing so provides a single point of contact for the incident. The point of contact is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. An early report also allows timely water samples or other response actions to be taken if needed.
If there is an immediate threat to life or property, call 911 first. For general information requests, people can also contact area DNR fisheries offices, but this is not the best way to report fish kills.

Bacteria a common culprit
One University of Minnesota study estimated that 500 fish die-offs happen each year in Minnesota.
In spring and summer, groupings of dead fish are usually the result of a common bacterial infection referred to as columnaris. Columnaris tends to affect fish as water temperatures warm and fish are stressed from the energy they spent on spawning. Columnaris infections can kill sunfish, crappies and bullheads, and occasionally, largemouth bass and northern pike.
Most fish diseases and infection issues found in nature tend to be concentrated in fish of a specific species and size range. In contrast, when an individual observes dead fish of vastly different sizes and from multiple species, human activity is a more likely a cause.
“People should try to describe the fish types and sizes they see when making a report. That kind of information helps immensely,” Burri said.
Human causes of fish kills can include water discharged at high temperatures, toxic chemicals discharged or spilled, pesticides and fertilizers, manure runoff, and low oxygen levels in a lake resulting from storm water that runs off urban or rural landscapes. Often, there are multiple causes contributing to fish deaths.
More information on fish kills is available on the DNR website.

SOURCE: Minnesota DNR

La Crosse's Monsoor wins $14,000 in FLW super tourney

DAYTON, TN - La Crosse's Tom Monsoor finished in 18th place in the  FLW Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament on Lake Chickamauga on Thursday.
Despite surviving the semifinal cut for the 50 top anglers from the 204-angler starting field, Monsoor failed to qualify for Friday's top 10 final round. However, he returns to La Crosse with $14,000.  
Monsoor, in his 17th year on the FLW Tour, was tied for ninth place after Day 1, then dropped into 25th after Day 2. He moved up seven spots on Thursday for his 18th place finish. Monsoor's total three-day weight was 47 pounds, 11 ounces, after weighing in 15-7 ounces on Thursday.
Jacob Wheeler of Harrison, TN, leads the event with a three-day  weight of 72-6.

Mille Lacs walleye fishing closing for July

Walleye angling on Mille Lacs Lake will be closed beginning Wednesday, July 1, and continuing through Friday, July 31. Additionally, anglers cannot use most live baits for any species in July. The exceptions are sucker minnows greater than 8 inches in length for targeting northern pike and muskellunge, and wax worms for panfish and perch.
The closure and live bait ban are due in part to a record ice fishing season on Mille Lacs this past winter that resulted in a harvest of almost 30,000 pounds of walleye. Closing the fishery in July, when warm water temperatures cause the highest rates of hooking mortality, is intended to avoid an unplanned closure later in the season. An unplanned closure would be triggered prior to the end of the open water season if the state reaches its share of the safe harvest amount agreed upon by the state and eight Chippewa bands that have treaty fishing rights on Mille Lacs.
With the exception of the month of July, walleye angling on the lake is catch-and-release this season. Catch-and-release walleye fishing is scheduled to re-open on Saturday, Aug. 1, and continue through Monday, Nov. 30. More information on Mille Lacs Lake is available on the DNR website.

SOURCE: Minnesota DNR

La Crosse's Monsoor survives cut in FLW super tourney

DAYTON, TN - La Crosse's Tom Monsoor dropped into 25th place after Wednesday's second round of the FLW Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament on Lake Chickamauga.
However, he did advance to Thursday's semifinal round reserved for the top 50 qualifiers.
Monsoor, in his 17th year on the FLW Tour, was tied for ninth place after Day 1, catching a 5-fish limit weighing 18 pounds, 7 ounces. He managed another 5-fish limit on Wednesday, but it weighed 13-13 for a 32-4, two-day total.
Jason Reyes of Huffman, TX, caught a five-bass limit weighing 27 pounds, 4 ounces – the largest limit weighed in the event – to capture the lead after Day 2 with a two-day catch of 10 bass weighing 49-14. He now holds a 3-pound, 4-ounce lead in the $1.3 million Super Tournament that features 204 anglers competing from the FLW and Major League Fishing.

La Crosse's Monsoor ready for return to FLW season

DAYTON, TN - La Crosse's Tom Monsoor, in his 17th year on the FLW Tour, is among 206 bass fishing pros assembled on Lake Chickamauga in Dayton, TN, for Tuesday's first round of the revised FLW Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit regular-season super tournaments.
The COVID-19 pandemic shutdown forced major changes to the remainder of this season’s FLW Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit.
Among the changes, was an invitation to Major League Fishing’s pro anglers to join the FLW Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit for three newly created “Super Tournaments” that include an expanded roster and higher payouts. The increase in the number of entry fees paid by the MLF pros, plus an extra investment from the two organizations, could result in tournament payouts of approximately $3.8 million through three events (a $1.37 million increase), depending on the field size. Assuming there is a 200-boat field, 50 percent of the anglers earn at least $10,000 at each event.
“It’s an understatement to say that these are historic times in professional bass fishing, but that’s exactly what we’re dealing with – a situation our industry has never faced before,” said FLW Executive Vice President and General Manager Kathy Fennel. “As we discussed how FLW should emerge from the quarantine period, we realized that we could work together with MLF to give both organizations’ anglers even better opportunities to earn money and represent their sponsors.
Needless to say, anglers are excited about the new payouts resulting from larger fields.
"It should be a lot of fun," Monsoor said, describing it as taking the stars from both organizations and combing them into all-star events.
Another change in the revised FLW Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit schedule also includes a stop on the Mississippi River in La Crosse from July 29-Aug. 1.
"I can't wait for that one," said Monsoor, currently in 66th place with 394 points and $24,500 in the this year's Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Angler of the Year standings.
However, first things first, beginning early Tuesday morning on Chickamauga. Monsoor has fished in four previous tournaments there with his best finish in 2011 where he managed third place and pocketed $31,500.
Reflecting on his four previous tournament experiences on Lake Chickamauga, Monsoor said with a big smile, "If the water's high, then I do well because I'm a river fisherman. There are a lot of 7-8-9 pound largemouth in that lake, too."
Monsoor has accumulated $956,027 in his FLW career, needing only $43,973 to the $1 million milestone.

La Crosse's bass pro Monsoor shares 9th place in FLW tourney

DAYTON, TN - La Crosse's Tom Monsoor is tied for ninth place after Tuesday's opening round of the FLW Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament on Lake Chickamauga.
Monsoor, in his 17th year on the FLW Tour and heading toward the $1 million mark in career winnings, caught a 5-fish limit weighing 18 pounds, 7 ounces.
Jacob Wheeler, from Harrison, TN, leads the four-day event with 24-9.
Tuesday's event marked the return of the FLW Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit Super Tournament series after the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown in March.
While the majority of the other 203 anglers in the field fished close to shore, Monsoor tried deep water and it paid off. Using his patented swim jig, albeit a heavy 3/4-ounce rig, he caught his largemouth bass limit in water 15-25 feet deep.
"I had dead one and lost 4 ounces for that," he said, disgustingly. "Typically, that doesn't happen."
The 4-ounce penalty would have pushed Monsoor into 8th place. Monsoor's largest bass weighed 6-10.
"I thought that one was a monster, maybe 8 pounds," he said.
Monsoor said he fished four spots on Tuesday and caught all of his fish at only two of them.
Monsoor has also gone from first to last in the 204-angler field when leaving the starting docks on Wednesday.
"Yup, from first to last," he said, laughing while busily preparing for another day on the water.

Northern Zone smallmouth bass season opens

SPOONER, Wis. – With waters warming up, smallmouth bass season will open beginning on June 20 for the northern management zone.
While smallmouth bass season is currently open in southern Wisconsin, anglers will now have the opportunity to harvest them from these additional waters:
* Wisconsin-Michigan Boundary Waters.
* Northern management zone.
* Tributaries to Lake Michigan – north of Hwy 29 in Door and Kewaunee counties.
* Lake Superior – including Kakagon River and Slough.
Smallmouth bass harvest season varies by location. Anglers should consult the 2020-2021 Hook and Line Fishing Regulationsfor daily bag and size limits and season durations. All regulations and license requirements apply.
“The beginning of smallmouth bass season offers another great angling option in northern Wisconsin,” said Craig Roberts, a fisheries biologist with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. “Smallmouth bass are known for their tenacity and being both aggressive and hard fighters. They will bite all summer long in both lakes and rivers and offer great fishing for the whole family.”
Anglers may purchase a license online through the GoWild system or at certain essential businesses. Please visit the fishing license webpage for more information.
Insight into local smallmouth bass fishing locations can be found in the 2020-2021 Wisconsin Fishing Report. A list of quality bass waters is available on the DNR’s fisheries webpage.
The DNR encourages anglers to continue to fish close to home, practice safe social distancing and adhere to c
For specific information regarding COVID-19, we encourage the public to frequently monitor the DHS website for updates and to follow @DHSWI on Facebook and Twitter, or @dhs.wi on Instagram. Additional information is available on the CDC website.

SOURCE: Wisconsin DNR