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walleyenerd

Sturgeon Management Work

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walleyenerd

To monitor the lake sturgeon population, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and the Rainy River First Nation are co-operating on a sturgeon population estimate. The goal of the project is to estimate the number of sturgeon longer than 40 inches in the Lake of the Woods - Rainy River system, and to describe the size structure of the population.

Previous population estimates found the number of 40-inch and longer sturgeon increased from 16,000 (in 1990) to about 60,000 in 2004.

Anglers have had an important role in sturgeon management activities for over 10 years. During the 2004 population estimate, more than one half of the tagged sturgeon were donated by anglers fishing in Fourmile Bay and the Rainy River. If you happen to be fishing in an area where a tagging crew is working, please consider donating any sturgeon you are planning to release to be tagged. Do not hold for, or transport sturgeon to, the fisheries crew. Let them come to you. Should the fisheries crew not see you catch the fish, try to get their attention. If they are not there promptly, or have not communicated directions to you, release the sturgeon.

In addition to donating sturgeon, please keep a sharp look-out when travelling through Fourmile Bay. Fourmile Bay is very shallow, and nets set in the bay are vulnerable to being run over by boats, and destroyed. The ends of the nets will be marked with flags, and a series of buoys will be distributed along the net between the flags. Please don’t travel between the flags! The nets are very expensive, and in limited supply.

If you would like a bit more information on this project, please check out the Baudette Area Fisheries web page on the MN-DNR web site. The additional information will be posted later today.

Good luck fishing!

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Meat-Run

Thx for posting Walleyenerd.

MR

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walleyenerd

I thought I would provide an update from the weekend, and let you know what is being planned through next weekend.

Since last Tuesday (April 22) anglers contributed 145 sturgeon to be tagged. The biggest sturgeon we tagged was 69.5 inches long, but we did hear about 2 sturgeon that went 70 inches.

We tried to set nets in Fourmile Bay, at the Morris Point end, but due to high flows, those nets were fouled with debris. It took us three days to clean them to where they can be set again. Nets will be set in Fourmile Bay before the weekend, so anglers should be aware that they are there.

There will be about three crews working anglers on Friday and Saturday. Once again, if you plan to release any sturgeon you catch we would appreciate it if you would contribute them to be tagged. Don't hold any sturgeon for the tagging crews unless you are instructed to do so.

If you plan to fish for sturgeon, make sure the tackle you use is up to the task. Catching a big sturgeon on tackle more suited to walleye is very hard on the sturgeon, and it takes them a long time to recover.

Finally, please be aware of where you are fishing. Don't forget that sturgeon are protected in Ontario, and that fishing for them there is illegal. Make sure you are fishing on the Minnesota portion of the Rainy River and Fourmile Bay.

Good luck fishing!

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walleyenerd

I forgot to mention something really important! While working over the weekend I noticed that the majority of anglers are now handling their sturgeon correctly. smile Remember to support those bellies and don't hold them by their gills or tails when posing for those pictures.

For more information on how to handle your sturgeon, go to: http://files.dnr.state.mn.us/areas/fisheries/baudette/sturgeon_advice.pdf

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Alagnak

I forgot to mention something really important! While working over the weekend I noticed that the majority of anglers are now handling their sturgeon correctly. smile Remember to support those bellies and don't hold them by their gills or tails when posing for those pictures.

For more information on how to handle your sturgeon, go to: http://files.dnr.state.mn.us/areas/fisheries/baudette/sturgeon_advice.pdf

Awesome! We noticed the same thing. Thanks for the update.

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DTro

Thanks for the update.

We seen nets at the mouth of the rapid too.

Great reminder on the gear. Hate seeing 30 minute battles. Even the biggest fish should take no more than 10 minutes to land.

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