We are only a little over a month away from the 2013 sturgeon spearing season on the Winnebago Pool Lakes, and trust me when I say that it will be here before you know it! So while you get your spearing equipment ready and reminisce about past spearing experiences, please take a moment to review the regulations for the upcoming sturgeon fishery.
There are a few points that I would like to highlight:
- The sturgeon spearing hours have NOT changed, and therefore spearers will be able to spear from 6:30 AM to 12:30 PM each day of season. We have a rule proposal in place to attempt to change the spearing hours to 7:00 AM – 1:00 PM, but this rule will not be in place for the 2013 spear fishery.
- The legal spearing age has changed from 14 years of age to 12 years of age. Any youth that turn 12 between the October 31, 2012 deadline and the final day of the spear fishery are eligible to purchase a Lake Winnebago spearing license. Military personnel home on leave are also eligible to purchase a Lake Winnebago license up to the last day of the 2013 fishery.
- The system-wide harvest caps have not changed from those set in 2012 and are set at (400 juvenile females, 828 adult females, and 1200 males)
The colder weather has been making ice, and hopefully Mother Nature will bless us with safe ice conditions for the 2013 sturgeon spear fishery! I’m looking forward to February 9, and I wish everyone safe travels and a memorable 2013 sturgeon spear season!
PRyan P. Koenigs
Upper Fox – Wolf Fisheries Work Unit
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources