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eyechoholic

Dnr's future plan for walleye slot?

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Sculpin

Correct. But the Wisc. bands have yet to make a commitment one way or another.  I believe harvest by spearing and angling is still on the table for the Mille Lacs band.  

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Stick in Mud

In terms of netting at other times of the year, I suspect the bands' decision to only net in the spring also has to do with their ability to (usually) get it wrapped up before there's much non-Native traffic on the lake.  If you've ever been around an access when the nets come in, or if you've ever heard some of the unpleasant conversations between the bands and the "spectators," I wouldn't want to be sharing an access with some of those guys, either.  

 

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Weathertite
3 hours ago, Bandersnatch said:

Am I mistaken, or did not the Mille Lac band say that they would not net the lake Spring 2016?

I haven't heard of that , Can anyone confirm this ?

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Stick in Mud

The above post was correct....the Mille Lacs Band has said it will not net.  The other six Wisconsin bands have yet to state their intentions, as far as I've heard. 

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delcecchi

All you ice fishrmen, if you kill a walleye in January or February it doesn't spawn in April 

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eyeguy 54

lol,  well aint dat da truth

 

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delcecchi

By the way, how is that 5000 pound quota doing?  Haven't heard mention of it lately.

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Stick in Mud

Good point, Del, though some will quibble with where you've started the calendar.  :) 

I got checked this weekend, and a different warden was up on the northwest end the weekend before (at least that's what I hear...I wasn't there).  I haven't seen a creel survey person sitting on shore.  I assume the wardens give input into the total harvest?  Or not, I have no idea.  There are a lot of WAG's built into the formulas that determine harvest, that's for sure. 

 

 

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leech~~
4 hours ago, delcecchi said:

All you ice fishrmen, if you kill a walleye in January or February it doesn't spawn in April 

Very good point Del! :)

I wonder if an 18" inch slot Walleye can produce the same amount of eggs as a 23"-26" inch netted Walleye? Since we will never know. Maybe we can ask some of the netters to weigh egg sacks out of each and let us know! ;)

Edited by leech~~
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Sportland_Bait
15 hours ago, delcecchi said:

All you ice fishrmen, if you kill a walleye in January or February it doesn't spawn in April 

That is true.  I have no problems not keeping any fish until we can help the fishery get to a level where we can have options.  It is a matter of all parties working together for what is best for the fishery.  Right now, I think we can all agree that right now it is out of balance and everyone is fighting for the scraps.

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jigginjim

I had thought of a couple different ideas,  A. build a walleye hatchery for Mille Lacs and surrounding area lakes.

B. Rather then Gill nets, the tribes use basket type to catch walleyes alive then strip the eggs for the hatchery. (tribes get their fish, yet spawning fish eggs can be used for a better turn around on eggs)

C. Which lake to barb-less hooks, and live bait rigs to circle hooks only. (this may cut down on gut hooked fish, and less kill of non-slot sized fish.)

Just my thoughts,   every body can come out better.

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leech~~
2 hours ago, jigginjim said:

I had thought of a couple different ideas,  A. build a walleye hatchery for Mille Lacs and surrounding area lakes.

B. Rather then Gill nets, the tribes use basket type to catch walleyes alive then strip the eggs for the hatchery. (tribes get their fish, yet spawning fish eggs can be used for a better turn around on eggs)

C. Which lake to barb-less hooks, and live bait rigs to circle hooks only. (this may cut down on gut hooked fish, and less kill of non-slot sized fish.)

Just my thoughts,   every body can come out better.

Yes, one set of fishing rules and limits for all man and no nets anymore. If one man can catch enough to feed their family with a hook and line so can everyman! ;)

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Sculpin

The Mille Lacs bands formal announcement to suspend spring gill netting came back in the first week in Aug. and was reported in St Paul paper, Mille Lacs Messenger, and perhaps others. In addition Gov. Dayton announced it at a town hall meeting in Isle at that time. The Mille Lacs bands estimated 2016 harvest would be about 3,000 lbs. this year, given the just announced 40,000 lb. harvest cap, which is the same as last year. 

The M.L. Band has not said they would NOT harvest, only that they would not gill net.  They can still go out and spear their fish, or hook and line them.  

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delcecchi
1 hour ago, leech~~ said:

Yes, one set of fishing rules and limits for all man and no nets anymore. If one man can catch enough to feed their family with a hook and line so can everyman! ;)

What part of "their quota is theirs and they cam harvest it any way they please" is so hard to understand?

Slots are a mechanism for limiting rate of harvest, and don't even seem to be a good way to do so.  Alternatives would likely be better for the resource.

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leech~~
30 minutes ago, delcecchi said:

 and "they cam harvest" it any way they please" is so hard to understand?

 

This part! :D

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Sculpin
1 hour ago, delcecchi said:

What part of "their quota is theirs and they cam harvest it any way they please" is so hard to understand?

Slots are a mechanism for limiting rate of harvest, and don't even seem to be a good way to do so.  Alternatives would likely be better for the resource.

What would you propose as a viable "alternative"  to slots, they seem to work in other lakes.  Perhaps the difference in the case of Mille Lacs is that there is only a slot for sport anglers. Perhaps the lake can't sustain it both ways.

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Weathertite

What if : Instead of using part of our licence dollars to support the liberal arts programs. We used those dollars to support the local business around Mille Lacs Lake and shut down any kind of harvest from the lake for 1 yr ? Might not be the long term solution , But it would certainly help the Fishery. Both side would be giving up the same thing and it would be fair to all. Just a thought.

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mjk
On 2/2/2016 at 3:13 PM, Bandersnatch said:

Am I mistaken, or did not the Mille Lac band say that they would not net the lake Spring 2016?

I read something that said, yes, they are not netting.  Unfortunately, that doesn't mean other bands are going to refrain from netting this year.  And I thought I read that the other bands contribute heavily towards the total.

 I thought I also read that WI bands can net the lake - is that true?

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Stick in Mud
13 hours ago, Sculpin said:

What would you propose as a viable "alternative"  to slots, they seem to work in other lakes.  Perhaps the difference in the case of Mille Lacs is that there is only a slot for sport anglers. Perhaps the lake can't sustain it both ways.

I think the double-bind here is that the DNR needs (or, when this problem really got going, needed) to limit total harvest in order to prevent going over the poundage quota. Back then, when the lake was full of nothing but big walleyes that didn't have enough to eat, "we" anglers would've hit our quota very, very quickly if we had kept any big fish.  So the harvest slot of relatively smsall walleyes allowed us to keep fish without shutting down the lake/hitting the quota.  Add our harvest of small walleyes with the big walleyes eating the small ones, and now that those big walleyes are mostly gone, there are a few years of almost completely missing year classes. As far as I understand it, that's why the numbers in the lake are so low--except for the 2013 class that is now what we're all catching in relative abundance.

But the DNR was (and still is) stuck.  It lost the battle at the Supreme Court and is now stuck with the current system (or at least it doesn't appear willing to fight another battle).  It has to share harvest. It has no right to prevent Native harvesting in any matter they want. How do we divvy up the total while not going over the allotted 40,000 lbs?  That's the rub.  Slots ain't perfect, but what else can they do at this point? 

 

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Bandersnatch
2 hours ago, Stick in Mud said:

I think the double-bind here is that the DNR needs (or, when this problem really got going, needed) to limit total harvest in order to prevent going over the poundage quota. Back then, when the lake was full of nothing but big walleyes that didn't have enough to eat, "we" anglers would've hit our quota very, very quickly if we had kept any big fish.  So the harvest slot of relatively smsall walleyes allowed us to keep fish without shutting down the lake/hitting the quota.  Add our harvest of small walleyes with the big walleyes eating the small ones, and now that those big walleyes are mostly gone, there are a few years of almost completely missing year classes. As far as I understand it, that's why the numbers in the lake are so low--except for the 2013 class that is now what we're all catching in relative abundance.

But the DNR was (and still is) stuck.  It lost the battle at the Supreme Court and is now stuck with the current system (or at least it doesn't appear willing to fight another battle).  It has to share harvest. It has no right to prevent Native harvesting in any matter they want. How do we divvy up the total while not going over the allotted 40,000 lbs?  That's the rub.  Slots ain't perfect, but what else can they do at this point? 

 

Sorry, but that is entirely off base from how I understand that the MNDNR has been managing the slot.

 

They have been targeting the same year class fish for three-four years since there are fewer and fewer of them, not many "Slot Fish" are caught.

 

Last seasons shut down was not brought on by kept Slot Fish, but by estimates of Hooking Mortality in my understanding.

 

As an aside, having the slots target the very same fish that the net sizes do, is a bit on the stupid side.

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Sculpin
3 hours ago, mjk said:

I read something that said, yes, they are not netting.  Unfortunately, that doesn't mean other bands are going to refrain from netting this year.  And I thought I read that the other bands contribute heavily towards the total.

 I thought I also read that WI bands can net the lake - is that true?

Correct, there are 6 other Tribes that come over from Wi. to join in the festivities. In addition, a good deal of the decision making process is dictated by the GLIFWC, Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission. It was in fact the GLIFWC that made the harvest recommendation for 2016. The Wi.  Bands have not yet made any commitment one way or another on Mille Lacs. They are however looking to expand their harvest to other major lakes in the treaty area, including Vermilion.

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Stick in Mud

I don't even remember what the slots have been the last three or four years, to be honest.  I'm also not sure I follow your argument, but it's been a long day. If the slots have been targeting the same year class of fish for the last three/four years, and our harvest of those fish is the cause of the low numbers, then wouldn't there only be one "missing" year class?  I mean, four years ago the current 18-20'' fish were, what, a few inches long?

Good point about the hooking mortality; yes, that was a lot of the "harvest" last year, as far as I understand. 

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eyechoholic
21 hours ago, Weathertite said:

What if : Instead of using part of our licence dollars to support the liberal arts programs. We used those dollars to support the local business around Mille Lacs Lake and shut down any kind of harvest from the lake for 1 yr ? Might not be the long term solution , But it would certainly help the Fishery. Both side would be giving up the same thing and it would be fair to all. Just a thought.

If they do that they need go around the whole state and bail out resorts on other lakes that are going through lean times due to bad fishing years. You can't just favor mille lacs. When times are good save some of that money for slow times it's business 101. If you can't make it through sell your resort they are worth quite a bit. No pity from me and here is why. I own a house framing business it's good right now but from 2006 to 2010 there wasn't any new houses going up and if there was you got paid half of what you were getting before. The state wasn't bailing my ass out or anyone else in the industry you either make it through or you dont.

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Bandersnatch
18 hours ago, Stick in Mud said:

I don't even remember what the slots have been the last three or four years, to be honest.  I'm also not sure I follow your argument, but it's been a long day. If the slots have been targeting the same year class of fish for the last three/four years, and our harvest of those fish is the cause of the low numbers, then wouldn't there only be one "missing" year class?  I mean, four years ago the current 18-20'' fish were, what, a few inches long?

Good point about the hooking mortality; yes, that was a lot of the "harvest" last year, as far as I understand. 

You can sort of read it between the lines in this one:

http://www.messagemedia.co/millelacs/outdoors/walleye-fishing-returns-on-mille-lacs/article_e624d81a-7cb2-11e5-8c57-df910697fc93.html

 

I was looking for the comments by Don Pereira, DNR Fisheries chief, made at the last meeting in Brainard, where he actually came out and admitted that they had set the slot to follow the almost nonexistent year classes in an effort to keep actual harvest down, but sorry, couldn't find that one. (and I gotta work sometime!)

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delcecchi

It now seems that the slots and resulting high numbers of big walleye led to cannibalism and poor recruitment for several years.

The DNR had several alternatives to limit harvest, and slots seemed to be the one they believed would be most acceptable to anglers.

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