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cjac

Bad legislation proposed, action needed

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cjac

Hi guys,

There is a new bill being proposed by one of the Minnesota Representatives to the State Legislature regarding pike and muskie management, and quite honestly, with more of an adverse impact to pike.

Here's the bill (below) and my translation:

In a nutshell, this bill would take control of the pike and muskie management out of the hands of well schooled and educated experts, who listen to and are influenced by sportsman's groups (Mn Darkhouse Assn, Muskies Inc, etc), and put it in the hands of those not inclined necessarily to represent our interests, studies, facts, and truth. It would be transferred to those seeking re-election, public approval, i.e. the Legislative body. The reps and organizations that give us what we have today would be a little yelp in a room full of big dogs barking away.

If you say "Things are fine now, why bother, or what's the big deal?"...that's a direct result of what's been done to get to this point and the bumps and bruises absorbed along the way. This bill would be a 100 steps backward after several long and trying steps forward.

It's the pike interest that is most at jeopardy. "Snot rockets", "slimers", "hammer handles".....those are labels that need to be shed. Pike play a critical role in a lake's balance, and need to be regarded in better terms than those mentioned above. This bill would squelch all efforts, slots, regs, that have been introduced to turn things around.

Whether you target pike with line or spear, or likely both, it's not a good deal. All efforts made collectively by the Darkhouse Assn, Muskies Inc, and the DNR would be open to being revisited by lawmakers, not experts.

Opening spearing to the 26 closed lakes??? I honestly don't know enough to comment. However, most spearers are conscientious enough and know what they're doing. If not, the "bad apples" will likely still do "whatever" despite of laws. That's where the Darkhouse Assn helps, but if this goes into effect, their influence is greatly diminished. Spearing has come a long ways, thanks to the efforts of these organizations working TOGETHER to make an impact.

What do you all think of the 26 closed lakes?? I'm VERY interested in your collective thoughts... These waters are being managed as trophy pike and muskie waters, good times for open water for sure. Are 26 additional lakes to the 4000+ pike lakes a major stumbling block?

Anyhow, after all that, if you're in this forum, if you chase pike with line and/or spear, this is something you would rather not see go thru. If you choose to, and please do, contact your Rep, sell the economic benefits (Unfortunately, money talks....) of a viable pike and muskie fishery in addition to your own wants of targeting big pike and solid populations of pike.

Sorry for the long post, but I wanted to make the spearing community aware. One person did contact the head of the Darkhouse Assn, they did not support this legislation.

Thanks, Chris

Here's the bill itself:

H.F. No. 3676, as introduced - 85th Legislative Session (2007-2008) Posted on Feb 29, 2008

1.1A bill for an act

1.2relating to game and fish; providing possession and daily limits for northern pike;

1.3authorizing spearing of northern pike statewide; requiring rulemaking; amending

1.4Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.401, subdivision 2; proposing coding for

1.5new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 97C.

1.6BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

1.7 Section 1. Minnesota Statutes 2006, section 97C.401, subdivision 2, is amended to read:

1.8 Subd. 2. Walleye; northern pike. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (B), a person

1.9may take no more than one walleye larger than 20 inches and one northern pike larger

1.10than 30 inches daily.

1.11(B) The restrictions in paragraph (a) do not apply to boundary waters.

1.12 Sec. 2. [97C.407] NORTHERN PIKE.

1.13(a) The possession and daily limit for northern pike is three, of which no more than

1.14one may be larger than 30 inches.

1.15(B) Northern pike may be taken by spearing on all lakes within the state.

1.16© Notwithstanding sections 97C.001 and 97C.005 or other law to the contrary,

1.17the commissioner may not adopt rules to take northern pike that are inconsistent with

1.18this section.

1.19 Sec. 3. RULEMAKING.

1.20The commissioner of natural resources shall amend Minnesota Rules, chapters 6262,

1.216264, and 6266, to conform with sections 1 and 2. The commissioner may use the good

1.22cause exemption under Minnesota Statutes, section 14.388, subdivision 1, clause (3), to

2.1amend the rules. Minnesota Statutes, section 14.386, does not apply except as provided

2.2under Minnesota Statutes, section 14.388.

2.3EFFECTIVE DATE.This section is effective the day following final enactment.

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cjac

One more thing......

Yeah, I'm a muskie guy first, although I did try to get out spearing this year but my back blew up so I couldn't go, bummer.

I put this here because it's in the best interest of the spearing community not to see this go thru either. With or without opening the 26 lakes, still not good for pike management and the voices of sportsmans groups like the Darkhouse Assn, Muskies Inc, etc.

Here's a list of the State Representatives ton contact and voice your disproval of this bill:

State Reps

Thank guys. Chris

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bassNspear

thanks for the information that you have posted here Chris. As far as the 26 lakes, im not looking ither way as to them opening it or closing it, becuase as my understanding, there is so many lake out there in the state of minnesota that we can spear on, where we dont need to have all these lakes to spear fish. I understand that these lakes are holding trophy fish, but im not out there to spear trophy fish, im out there to enjoy the sport, and if i see a monster, thats awesome. I would rather spear smaller fish to help keep the population down where we are not getting bigger and bigger.

I dont like the fact that there going to take the population figures out of the hands of the Organizations. I believe there the ones that are really out there watching it, and making sure there are alot of lakes that are going to be safe, and the population of these lakes stays on the rise.

I hope they can come to great terms and figure things out so that everyone can be happy, and that our AWESOME fisherys here are going to stay awesome for many years to come.

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Jameson

 Originally Posted By: cjac

In a nutshell, this bill would take control of ... muskie management out of the hands of well schooled and educated experts

How does this bill take muskie management away from the experts?

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cjac

The DNR Commissioner's office, and in turn the DNR itself, is not in charge of laws/rules that control fishing anymore, law makers (politicians) are.

The group that would and has listened to the Darkhouse Assn wouldn't be there to hear the concerns anymore. It's in the hands of politicians seeking campaign funding, re-election, etc. They are not after nor are educated enough to know how to manage a fishery. That's why DNR reps with degrees and masters degrees in fisheries management and ecology need to be able to influence and drive the appropriate laws to give "us" what we want, and have given us what we have now.

Trust me on this one, not good if you target pike, no matter what method you use. I wouldn't have posted here with this is it wasn't in the best interest of spearers and anglers both.

Chris

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Jameson

 Originally Posted By: cjac
...not good if you target pike, no matter what method you use....

IF I am a spearer wanting to spear on Minnetonka, how is this bad legislation? This is GREAT legislation! "Trust me on this." \:D

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cjac

Tonka is one lake, if you're willing to see the other "several thousand" lakes decline for your own personal gain of spearing on 'tonka, then more power to you........

It's bad that even if you wanted to spear on 'tonka, the quality of fish would be on the decline......unless you like 14 inch stunted pike.

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bassNspear

i think that we dont need to spear on tonka, becuse of the muskies and the way they lake has become so popular. Just keep it the way it is to help save lakes.

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cjac

Thanks again B 'n'S! I wouldn't be in this forum if I didn't think it was important enough to share!

Chris

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Scott M

As a spearer and a musky angler, it doesn't really matter to me either way. There really hasn't been any scientific proof (please provide some if you disagree) of spearers taking muskies, either purposefully or accidental. I know the DNR tried a SCUBA diving study on Plantagenet and Bemidji like a decade ago and they failed to recover any speared and discarded muskies. The DNR used to have those pamphlets showing what a musky and a pike looked like when viewed from above in a spearing house, so they tried an educational campaign. I don't think people really spear musky, but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen.

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cjac

da_chise31

If we take muskies entirely out of this.....it's still a bad piece of legislation. In truth, the pike lakes and populations are as much or more at risk if this goes thru.

One step further: take spearing out of this issue, it's still not a good thing for the pike fisheries and fisheries in general.

Hope this helps to clarify and bring the real issue here to the top.

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Scott M

I reread that and am still confused...the proposed law says

 Quote:
1.15(B) Northern pike may be taken by spearing on all lakes within the state.

1.16© Notwithstanding sections 97C.001 and 97C.005 or other law to the contrary,

1.17the commissioner may not adopt rules to take northern pike that are inconsistent with

1.18this section.

This is a spearing only issue, correct? What am I missing (and don't worry about my feelings, I've been too thick-skulled to understand proposed laws before)?

The rule doesn't mean spearers don't have to follow the same slot limits on lakes with special and experimental regs. They do in this bill, right? Isn't that what 97C.001 and 97C.005 are?

Spearers just need to be prudent in size selection. Then nothing really changes. Would I spear on a lake with special regs (24-36" generally)? No, but some may want to. And it would be their risk to take. I'm sure when spearing opens there will be lots of C.O. checks on those lakes if the bill passed.

Maybe it's more of a social question than biological one, as in do we want to take those risks in allowing spearing on those lakes. It certainly is a biological issue if compliance with the slot is an issue.

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Jameson

 Originally Posted By: Jameson
 Originally Posted By: cjac

In a nutshell, this bill would take control of ... muskie management out of the hands of well schooled and educated experts

How does this bill take muskie management away from the experts?

Currently fisheries management is under control of the legislation. Evidence is the legislation last year closing muskie season in December. That law was signed into existence not by the DNR commissioner, but by the governor. This years proposed legislation does not set a precedent for how game laws are enacted.

So I hope all the folks who last year supported legislators making game and fish laws, continue to support their legislators in making game and fish laws this year.

And I don't really care if Tonka gets opened up to spearing. It's just when lake numbers, and angler numbers get put out there things get overly general. Putting names on lakes, and taking people personally helps keep things in real-life perspective.

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cherokee

I started out spearing some 35 years ago and started musky fishing about 30 years ago. I have caught more muskies than northerns I have speared. I love to do both and I know both sports can co-exist with proper education.

Leave it as is. There are plenty of lakes to spear. The worst thing that can be done is to let our legislatures take control of anything. Personally I think our legislators (except a rare few) are out of touch with the people and have no clue in how to manage a government yet alone a natural resource.

Dale

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merkman

 Originally Posted By: cjac
One person did contact the head of the Darkhouse Assn, they did not support this legislation.

Before anyone contacts their state rep; I would suggest they talk to their local leaders in the Darkhouse Assn first hand to get the true Darkhouse Assn viewpoint, rather than relying on a supposed third person contact.

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Hammer Handle

I read this bill over and over and saw the post under the musky/northern site.

I guess I just don't see this as a big deal. I could go either way and I don't see how this is "destroying" anything.

As far as the bill giving the right to "take over", it doesn't. I don't see it. What are they taking control of that they don't already govern?

It is extremely important to read the information without letting personal feelings get in the way. Like I said, i could go either way and see this as no big deal. What am I missing?

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