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ghotierman

Statewide Slot lower limit for walleye.

64 posts in this topic

What is your opinion on walleye management? Should we lower the limit to four fish? Should there be a statewide slot? Or should management stay on a lake by lake basis?

Answer the poll and see how our ideas stack up!

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statewide limit lowered to 4

and lake by lake slot

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I IMO think there should be a 15" minimum length limit. A 4 fish limit is a tough call, I very rearly keep a limit of fish at 6 now. If the lake is on a hot bite then I would take a limit of fish home. 4 or 6 fish there are still going to be those people that it isn't going to matter, they will always take more than that until we as sportsmen and women stand up and tell the DNR we want stiffer penalties to stop the poaching.

But I think that the DNR should manage lakes on a per lake basis to enhance our fishing experiences.

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I think fluctuating limits and slots on each and every lake that change year to year would be best but would be impossible to achieve.

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What a great way to use the forum! For me 4 fish is enough. Do most people get their limit each time they go out? I can't tell you the last time I put 6 keeper fish in my boat when I was by myself. But then I don't consider myself an exceptional walleye fisher. It's all about responsibility. I pride myself on self imposed limits. We will always have fish pigs and law breakers. As I see and hear, those fishers that are capable of taking their limit each time don't. They know the impact that this has on their fisheries. My vote is leave the limit the same and slot lake by lake. Spend the time and money promoting knowledge of the sport not longer legislative sessions.

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All I know is when I was the age of my girls average fish was 3 lbs for the eyes. I take them out and they catch cigars. And they wonder why the youth is not involved in fishing now days.

HMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

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One of my boys made an interesting comment to me last winter as we were fishing. I asked how many of his friends like to fish and he said alot but they don't have the stuff they need. "What stuff do you need?" I said. answer: Depth finder, camera, portable shack, heater, gas auger you know the things we have. My friends can't afford that stuff. Wow! Did I teach them that? Myself and every fishing show. It costs alot to look the part. Kind of a different twist on youth interest.

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I agree completely with a 4 fish limit, the concept that some people dont understand is that when our prairie pot holes turn on they turn ON!! People do not show any responsibilities, they catch there limit and go back later that day for more. So in an essense the lake would be saving 2-4 fish per day from 1 fisherman. The lake we stay at got hit last year. The walleyes were biting, but there was not much size, 12-14 inches, we cruised the normal spots and yes we caught em' but we threw them back. But when you see 3 guys in a 14 foot boat trolling the prime spots, it leads me to one conclusion. Now this lake is only 400 acres, and for a week straight there were at least 20 different boats through there a day. How bad do you think this hurt the walleye population??

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Something needs to be done...but 15 inch min is fine...but then you get the guys who cull and keep the biggest fish they can catch you need a top end also..I grew up on the st.louis river in duluth and seen what the 15 inch min did there its really sad to see people fish all day to keep 2 5 pound plus egg layers...When i was younger 5 pounders were a common thing on the river and it wasn't that big of a deal alot of 8's and 9's also but now nothing like it was...Sad...i watched over 25 years now and have always wondered why nothing changes..Just more and more people fishing..witch is fin... but for every 1 person who cares and will throw back that 5 pounder theres 5 that will keep it...so those fish need protection also..

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I like all the ideas I also think that you could have a state wide slot and limit of 4 but then still have the lake by lake basis.

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I'm not in favor of a statewide slot, but were it to happen I'd much prefer it start at 14" then 15". To me that's more where the break is from a cigar to a decent eating sized fish. I prefer the smaller ones to eat anyway.

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There is no doubt there needs to be change. The limit should be lowered and the DNR should still do the great job they do with the slot restrictions on lakes that need them.

The 6 fish limit was set how many years ago?

And the fishing pressure is probably double what it was then. Especially fishing through the ice with all the new technology and portable shacks.

It's not all about the meat!

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I almost voted all three but changed to reducing limit to 4 and manage on a lake by lake basis. The minimum length may need adjusting from one lake to another. Case in point. Lake Osakis has been experimenting with a 15" minimum for about 10 years now. What they have learned in that time is that for normal lakes, 15" walleyes have already spawned at least once. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your point of view, Lake Osakis walleyes grow faster than normal and 15" walleyes are still too young to spawn. The result? We have continued to harvest the fish before they have spawned even with the minimum slot.

As far as not reducing limits because of those that will violate them anyway, that would be a poor reason to leave things as they are. Simply put, no matter what laws we have there will be those that violate them but for the most part we do abide by the laws. If your not getting too many limits now then reducing it to 4 isn't going to matter much anyway and if you are it should help reduce the pressure on the resource.

Bob

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I don't think lowering the limit to 4 would have much of an impact - if any at all. They'd have to lower it to 2 to make an impact. I wouldn't mind seeing a 15" minimum though.

FI

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I think a 15-19 and 1 over 29 is the best solution...To many just for meat fisherman out there keeping the the biggest fish they can get..As far as numbers 6 is to many but I guess that could be a lake to lake thing but no more then 4....2 is ok with me that what i grew up with on the st.louis and the 15 inch min. but the no protection for the 20-29s is what killed that....

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6, 4, 2. I wouldnt care if the limit was four or two fish but I get to fish pretty often. They guy how can only go a few times a year is the one who wants a six fish limit and I can understand that. Two fish for me is enough for a meal for my girlfriend and I. Maybe a better deal than a lower limit would be two dirrent licsenses. One for the guy, or girl, who fishes alot with a four or two fish limit and conservation licsense for the couple time a year type fisherman with a six fish limit. It wouldnt be that hard. They already sell 24 hr and seven day licsenses. Make them a six limit and a year long liscense a four fish limit.

I do think six fish is too many, expecially if you can fish several days a week.

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I suspect that you are probably right that lowering it to 4 won't have much impact but we have to start somewhere. I would not object to even lower limits and more restrictive slots.

I know when we had our town meeting to discuss the results of the 15" experiment on Osakis this was brought up as a possible solution but the resort owners were not too keen on the idea. There were other ideas tossed around too like increasing the slot to 16" or higher, improving spawing beds, etc.

The primary objections to anything short of increasing the fishery without sacrificing limits or slots came from the local resort owners stating concerns of lost potential customers if they weren't allowed to keep more fish to take home. My thought is what's worse, reducing the limit or depleting the fishery to the point that there is nothing left? Sometimes we are willing to cut our own throat to spite our face as it were.

Bob

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There are some interesting view points about this topic, of course on this forum website most guys would be in favor of lowering the limit and a state wide slot, but thats not everyone's opinion either. IMO it all boils down to your self and the limits you put on for keeping or releasing fish. I honestly fish to keep a meal or a limit, and if my fishing skills let me (finding the fish, not missing any, line doesn't break, etc.). There are good things about slot limits and there are bad things about them as well. But imposing a total slot on the whole state is ridiculous in my book...every lake is different, and are your going to tell me a slot on Minnewaska or Miltona should be the same as a Lake Bemidji or Mille Lacs or Pepin or Vermillion or LOTW or Basswood? Each lake is different and recieves different amounts of fishing pressure, while holding different types of species, exotic or non, and each lake can classify as a different type of lake (mesotrophic, and I forget the other names). So like others have stated the DNR should regulate this and detemine what slot works for which lake and if the lake even needs a slot.

As for dropping the state limit to 4, I guess I don't really care if the legislature does or not, because like stated before guys who are gonna take over their limit will, thats why TIP was started so if you see guys doing illegal stuff then call it in, and the likely hood of people catching their limit of 6 now a days doesn't happen, unless you keep everything. And any lakes that you could get a good limit (15-20"ers) of 6 all have slot limits on them with a limit of 2 or 4 anyways, so doesn't make a difference if they drop it to 4 or keep it at 6.

It all comes back to our self limits and what we want out our fishing experiences, and also to keep our mouths zipped when we do stumbled upon a good bite and have it to ourselves, and don't tell the world. But that is getting harder and harder to do in this state, even in the BWCA with double the people who fish now days in this state. Too many noisy and lazy people out there that do not want to put in their time or work for the fish, and just expect it to come easy for them or information to be given out for free.

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I do agree on the lake by lake every lake is different..but these laws were made a long time ago and fishing has been growing more and more the equipment is so much better but in my opinion the fisherman do care as much...this lake gets fished out move on to the next...the laws are not keeping up I bet the number of fisherman has doubled sence the 6 fish limit was started if not on open water on the ice for sure..As far as resorts go not every lake will be as lucky as upper red was with crappies..that was a "walleye factory" well that factory was closed for business for a while how many more lake need to be fished out...1 was to many in my book

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Could not agree more with your last 2 posts pikehook!!

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I agree, that the laws haven't kept up with the #s of fisherman and the advancements (GPS, Sidefinding depthfinders, quiet outboards, cameras, on-line fishing reports,4 wheelers, portable icehouses,portable heaters, Vexilars, LakeMaster maps, ect, ect.) that we have today. But I also don't believe WE , as fisherman, have kept up either. Our "meat mentality" hasn't changed in proportion to the advances we've made to catch fish.

Don't get me wrong, I love all the technology, and have most of them, and love using them. I'm also not against keeping a limit of fish. What I'm against, is taking more that we need. Taking 3 fish one day, 4 the next, 6 the next, giving a few to the neighbors, keeping 5 the next, giving a few to the in-laws, &going back and keeping 4 more, ect. It's nearly impossible to enforce the possession limit.

That's where our thinking has to change, as a whole. There has been a change in attitudes with some, I believe. Catch and release, Catch, Photo and Realease, enforced slot limits & self imposed slot limits are talked about here quite a bit . It is what's NOT talked alot about (TAKING & KEEPING OVER POSSESSION LIMITS) that is hurting fish populations and quickly decimating those HOT lakes.

It's gonna take more time, but I think we can set examples, educate and point out how times have changed, and some of our attitudes may have to change also. The fisherman that bashes the DNR for imposing slot limits / lower limits and in the same breath says the DNR isn't doing their job (keeping lakes full of fish), needs to look in the mirror. The DNR has done some really good work, IMO, with what they have to work with. They will never be able to keep up with "us" if we don't change with the times. There's exponentially more factors going against quality fish populations than there was 20 yrs ago. Only fishermans attitudes / beliefs will be able to make up to those factors. That, and more calls to TIP (1-800-652-9093 or #TIP). IMO.

Oh almost forgot subject - limit 4, & lake specific slot limits.

(although this may not be realistic. I can't imagine each lake being intensely studied and individual lake management plans being developed. In an ideal world, yes. Hopefully, I'm wrong there. More slot limits, whatever they are, will be welcomed by me.)

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Leave the limit at six but have a none between 20" - 28". One over 28" in posession with no minimum size for eaters. I hear alot about a 15" minimum but I believe every guy could keep 50 12" Eyes and if we would throw back just one big one we would do our lakes more good. I would really like to see a study on that.

I'm thinking that would keep some of the people from sleeping overnight and just fishing for the big ones that don't taste any good anyway. Eat the small ones and throw back everything over 20".

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I know the 15" minimum on Lac Qui Parle was a disaster. That is a lake where they should grow fast. Just ended up with tons of fish below the minimum The DNR was saying that some fish were dying before reaching that 15". My opinion 4 fish - One over 19".

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I agree with the 4 fish limit. We now have only one over 20. I have heard the "no impact from reducing limits" line from the DNR.

Funny thing tho. I have a friend who was a biologist in the Glenwood fisheries office in the early 80's. He said they watched a good year class of wallyes develop in Minnewaska and watched until they got to about 17-18". They were hard on the forage, there was a good ice bite, followed by a real good summer bite, and another good winter, the next summer the DNR found that almost the whole year class had disappeared. They could hardly believe it.

The DNR creal surveys don't evalute what really goes on. I know which fish houses on Minnewaska will do double runs daily early season when the bite is good. I know a few older gentlemen who want to "have a fish fry" "want to take some to

Arizona" so they will make double runs when they can. I know the CO and he can't prove much unless it goes on for many days or he catches them overlimit on the lake.

When the walleye numbers are good on Reno it is susceptible to a good June bite. Don't get run over by the same boats doing 2 a days going back and forth to a certain town south of the lake. When Emily is good, usually between Memeorial and Fathers day certain Stevens county elderly gentlemen will do morning/evening runs and distribute to their extended families.

This goes on over the entire state. It is undetectable by CO's. It is unmeasurable by the DNR creel survey's. These guys don't get caught over limit on the lake, but they take a lot of fish over time. A 4 per day limit would at least put a muzzle on this type of abuse.

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Well look at it this way a double run at 4 fish is only 8 instead of 12.....So 4 fish are still swimming...

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