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Fishing


halad

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As we hunt down and slaughter the remnants of the crappie boom the discussion starts on how we are all going to get our share of the walleye boom.

Here are my thoughts. The 2-fish limit is fine with me, 4 would be better for ones who have to drive a long way. If the Tribe gill nets the slot limit means nothing and just penalizes us tax-paying folks on the American side of the lake. One Tribe member made the suggestion that they put a net accross the lake on the Reservation line so the white man cant get their fish. When they gill net they set 5-miles of net right on the line they might as well go the rest of the way. Believe me they are still at war with the white man we may have won a few battles a hundred years ago but they are winning the war. The great Bud Grant tried to beat them and look what happened to him. Look at the casinos, notaxes and no competition.

The only hope is that they vote to commercial fish by hook and line only. That way bigger fish could be released and there wouldnt be the large losses of fish that rot in the nets.

If they gill net you wont have to worry about catching fish out of the slot because 99% of the fish in the lake will be 12 to 14 inches as they were for the first 25 of the 35years that i have been up here.

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Good post halad. That is why I don't understand the DNR rules of limit of 2, and the slot limit? This lake is not like Lake Mille Lacs where white man can fish anywhere on the lake. Just shows you how the white man should quit wasting the money on stocking a lake like Red with walleyes, and should of kept it a crappie and pike factory. It really will be interesting how this lake will be 10-15 years down the road for being a "Great" walleye fishery.

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Spearmanink.........How do you think red lake would stay a great crappie fishery with only one year class of crappies....they are at 11 years now and only live 9-12 years......where is the great crappy fishery in 2-4 years....Don't blame it all on the indians.....in the 80's there was alot of "white men" taking buckets full of walleyes off the lake........happened for many years......Look at the whole picture and open up your mind to everything going on before laying blame.

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There's more than one year class of crappie in there. We caught some 10-11" fish last year which were still nice fish, but not part of that 95 year class.

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i think it could have stayed a great crappie lake just the same way they are going to turn it into this great walleye lake.

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I agree if they stocked it with 41 million crappie fry instead of walleye I think things would have continued...

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If they gill net you won't have to worry about catching fish out of the slot because 99% of the fish in the lake will be 12 to 14 inches as they were for the first 25 of the 35years that i have been up here.


Good one Halad! I've fished those lakes where everything but the cigars were netted out.

I suppose the DNR could manage it for crappies...! Limit three, eleven to sixteen inch fish must be returned to the water, one fish over sixteen inches. Or something like that?

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Holy smokes Halad THANKS!!!!!!!!!! you just proved my point. You correctly showed that ingnorance has no boundaries-it exists on both sides of Red Lake. Reading the minutes from the Tribes meeting and some of the rants from the reservation shows that there are plenty of KNUCKLEHEADS both ways.

Yes it would be nice if the band had a plan. They don't so lets hope they do the prudent thing and not open up the lake for commercial harvest yet. BUT ITS THEIR NATION NOT OURS and that means they set their own rules PERIOD you can't do anything about it OK?

Regarding the GREAT BUD GRANT don't forget the do anything for a buck and keep my name front and center mentality. It cost you and I nearly 24 million bucks to fight a treaty battle that was not winnable. 5 million would have settled it and saved a few years and a lot of people valuable time to work on more important things. So yes THANKS Bud and PERM for.......................spending 24 million for NOTHING

Spend time working on things you can change instead of getting all frothy on things you can't. Speaking of frothys and frostys.........its time for some!! 40-45 degrees tomorrow WOW

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If its thier nation and not ours then why don't we pull the plug on and gov't aid and any tax monies that go to them! Why did we pay for the bulk of the share to restock red lake and we get to take 2 fish under 17"? How are the gill nets going to determine if a walleye is under 17"? They won't, the lake will be netted to thier pleasing again. I can't believe some people are blaming hook and line fishermen for most of the fish harvest. Take next year(fishing 108,000...tribes get 590,000lbs) doesn't look the same to me. If bleeding hearts are really trying to unite people why are we deviding the state into our land and thier land? Why not just call it all MN? None of the tribal members were around when the land grabbing was going on and neither were any of us. Every group of people in the US has been persicuted and put down at one time or another.

By the way if the tribes want to use the treaty from the 1800's then they should have to obtain the fish the same way they did when the treaty was signed, no motors and no spotlights etc.

One more idea, when the lake is netted out again we should put a under water fence on "our side" and just stock that side and let the rest of the lake just sit there empty.

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ditto. i cant agree more. NO goverment handouts stay on there sovergn nation and stay out of our politics.

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Gill nets are made to catch a desirable size fish by the size of the holes in the mesh. In other words a bigger hole will catch a bigger fish and the smaller fish just swim through the holes. What happened up here is the walleye catching was slowing down and there was a big market for perch so they started using a smaller mesh net and in addition to perch caught the smaller walleye. You could go to the place in Walker that sold fish and buy packages of "baby walleye". I dont buy walleye in a restraunt but i think the desirable fillet to be plated is larger than the size fish that we will be able to keep. The idea of the Gill net is to catch the fish by the gills so they cant swim out and get away. If the net cant be tended properly because of wind,weather, car broke, bad night or whatever the fish die in the nets and are wasted.

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It WILL be interesting to see what happens in the next 10-20 years. First off, I think that the DNR finally found their gonads somewhere and will do a better job of monitoring the lake this time around, you won't see the overharvest that happened in the past. After a few years of fishing frenzy by the sportsman and harvesting by the net full on the other side of the line, when the 'easy' fishing is gone, most sport fisherman will go elsewhere, where they can have a better chance of catching fish. The people that keep coming will still have have a good time catching the pike, crappies, and walleye that are left - the same as any other lake where people goto up north. The key will be to keep the fishing good enough to keep people coming back. You can't expect the boom fishing like the crappies have been or what the walleyes will be for several years, yet as much a people like to talk about 'the good times with friends' and the 'beautiful sunsets', sooner or later everybody likes to catch fish - thats what creates the memories that keep you coming back. Look at Leech in recent years, when the fishing goes down, the resorts have suffered. Hopefully it won't come to that again on Red.

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I live in Southern Minnesota and "ALL' the lakes here are overharvested, badly! There isn't any netting going on that I know of. There is a lot of double and triple dipping as such when the bite is hot to the point of extinction. "TIPS" and C & R is practiced but once the word gets out, it isn't long before the fish are gone. I think the Mille Lacs model has establish a great precedent on what can happen. If the same holds true for URL I think we will have a world class fishery for a long time. I have always said if one wants to see where the fish go, check every livewell and cooler on the Sunday after opener coming off of Mille Lacs. I am sure it would b e a real eye opener.

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Like General Custer i wont give up without a fight even though i know the outcome. Ok folks im done being the "demon" its all up to the "Fish Gods" now anyway. By the way a book i recommend is "Crazy Horse and Custer" by Stephen E. Ambrose, The good guys win. Like my good friend Hugo used to say "If you look in my window at nite you will still be there in the morning". Lakinooki

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Halad

Please don't retreat because of me. I may or may not agree with your opinions but I certainly respect your right to state them. This is a "forum" supposely where one can express themselves pro and con regardless, I think!!!!

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I agree that we should erect a fence and let the tribes stock and manage their own fish...without our money. -OR- I think we should let them have the rest of Upper Red and they should let us have back Lower Red. I wonder what kind of creatures are swimming in those waters. It doesn't make sense to share a lake and have different harvest rules and expect to maintain and sustain a healthy fishery. They need a seperate lake to do their netting and fish genocide. You would think Lower RL is big enough for them to get enough fish out of but they probably raped the lake and have no proper programs for stocking. I don't have any numbers to go off of but I would think that they could make more money off of fishermen if they let us fish any part of Upper or Lower and stop the netting. There would be resorts and stores for them to make money off of merchandise rather than our dead slot fish.

For the next few years we should enjoy the excellent walleye fishing on URL and cherish the years of the slabs. Who knows what the future brings. We'll just have to take advantage of what we have in front of us at the time and leave the politics to the suits.

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Thats ok Kato its the people up here who will suffer you folks down there will just haul your fishhouse to the next hot lake.

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I feel ya Halad, because look at Red now this winter with the crowds being nowhere like they use to be in the last couple years. This lake is going to be hit really hard in the next couple years again for what? 2 walleyes! LOL

Black Max you hit it right on the target, about what the Indians can take and what we can take off the lake. And that is why I don't understand the slot limit on the walleyes or even on the pike?

Wigglinmyworm, ask yourself that question? My answer is how could Red not keep being a crappie factory? Its a huge body of water, and they do reproduce, and other fisherman have caught smaller class sized crappies. Grant it, they would not have a huge class like that but still with that many crappies they would still hold up and keep reproducing...they did stock walleye in there so what do you think the walleyes eat in Red? Small crappies and crappy fry, and small perch, and usually with big pike they eat crappies too. Just the way the food chain system is. One thing I would like to point out that most of the walleyes came from Lake Vermillion, and now from what I hear that lake is not doing so well on walleye population size. That would be an interesting study on how the walleye population will be on Vermillion because of the effects of stocking Red.

As for me pointing the blame, who do you blame? Prolly both us and the Indians. But like Black Max said with the number of pounds of walleye take off each year by us and the indians, it really isn't fair. I understand they are their own nation and own rules but H#ll when we spend out tax money on stocking a lake for us to fish and they can take whatever sized fish they want up to 413,000 lbs. off the lake. It really makes you think wow what is the point of a slot limit for the white man? [Note from admin: edited out statement talking about iolegal activity- please read forum policy] There would be alot less conflict about this lake if white man didn't even own land on it. A theory I once heard was why not give the whole lake back to the Indians in trade that we take their rights off of a lake such as Mille Lacs or Leech or Vermillion? Because we only get to fish what a third of Upper Red, and I know that there are different tribes of Ojibwe (SP) in this state on each of those different lakes, and its just an idea. I actually would like to hear what some people would have to say on that idea! But I know really that something like that could not really happen.

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I sorta get ticked off, and really makes me fish by my own rules when I fish on lakes like that.


I think statements like THAT are scary! THAT is what some people DID do on "our" side of the lake- "fished by their own rules"...and got greedy. Yep, it happened on the other side of the Lake too, nobody has ever denied that. But if we all thought like that, exactly where would that leave us? Dead in the water, so to speak.

We didn't pay for even HALF the total restocking fee from what I understand.

And guess what? You don't HAVE to go and fish there. In fact with your stement above, I would probably prefer that you didn/t

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Spearman - Don't let me, or any of a huge number of sportsmen and women fishing URL (or anyplace else for that matter), see you fishing by your own rules. We'll be on the cell phone arranging an interview with the CO.

When you get ticked off from now on just head to the grocery store and buy more fish than your freezer will hold. That'll teach em'.

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I say quit busting spermans chops, he was just blowing off some steam about being discouraged about how many fish we get to catch vs. the tribes. And as far as us paying less than half of the restocking fees, I would have to say you are a fool to believe that for a second! Show me the numbers, from what I heard on this very forum the tribes only paid around $10,000, so unless the total bill was under 20k I'd say that you are wrong. Even if we did pay less than the tribes I will bet that we didn't pay for only our share of the lake that we are "allowed to fish".

This is just reverse discrimination against the fishermen of the state of mn. All the do-gooders want to rush in and make sure everyone knows that they are all about helping out the tribes against the "evil blue eyed fishermen". They don't give a crap about the lake or fishing , or even the tribes. They just want to make themselves feel good at the expense of others.

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Let’s all untangle our undies and look at this from an effective angle for the future. He said this and he said that is an easy thing to do when the chips are down. The point that interests me is when the walleyes went down in the first round everybody was pointing fingers in different directions looking for somebody to blame. Then out of nowhere we have crappies in every square inch of water and all is good again. Now that crappies are on a slow bite out comes the blame game. You know whose fault I think it is? Mine, just as much as it is yours, and just as much as it is the fisherman next to you, the one across the lake, down the road from you and even the ones from out of state. We all could have done things differently to achieve a better outcome that what we seen.

What’s done is done, we as an intelligent, reasoning and learning creature should be able to look back at each one of our own actions and say: “that was a bad decision, I shouldn’t do that again” we are all to blame for what happened, no amount of name calling or mudslinging will fix that, what will help to shape the future is learning from the mistakes made and coming to an civil, overall agreement on how to approach things the next time trouble is on the horizon. That does not get accomplished by badgering each other.

I would like to see one law across the lake, with no gray areas. I also want a million dollars and a private jet to fly to Bora Bora to fish Marlin. I would guess I will receive neither wishes. Currently many groups are working together to the best of their efforts to come to a solution to this problem. We don’t see that good news, only bad stuff makes headlines.

So let’s try to have a civil discussion that may generate some good ideas for the future. I really don’t care to see name calling, threatening quotes and statements about unethical practices, we are all better then that. Also remember that we are on-line in front of the whole world including children (yes many young ones frequent these pages) , the future leaders that will make the decisions when we have grown tired of fighting with each other. They don’t need to read a post full of mudslinging, young adults get enough of that in this world as it is.

And just to clarify that I am not shooting from the hip as an unkown guy from out of town. I lived through the walleye crash in Waskish/Upper Red Lake and watched as my friends, nieghbors and family slowly went broke and left my hometown in search of other methods to put food on the table, I myself had leave to make a living since nobody could find a solution, just blame each other.

With all that said what things will you do in the future to help?

Jon Petrowske

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For a young buck, you are wise beyond your years!!!! I second your post!!!!!! wink.gif

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And as far as us paying less than half of the restocking fees, I would have to say you are a fool to believe that for a second! Show me the numbers


From the Minnesota DNR website:

"The meeting between Whitefeather and Sando led to the formation of the Red Lake Fisheries Technical Committee, a team of state, federal, band, and University of Minnesota fisheries experts who eventually hammered out the walleye recovery plan. A group of reservation and Waskish-area citizens also offered input.

The agreement, signed in April 1999, called for stocking 40 million walleye fry up to five times during the next decade, a zero-walleye limit on all state and tribal waters until stocks recover, and stepped-up enforcement. The band, through the federal BIA, would pay $40,000 of the $68,000 annual cost of the stocking program; the state DNR would foot the remaining $28,000 from money generated by fishing license sales"

Now, I can't say that is FACT, but they are the numbers I have always heard. You can read it all right here:

http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/volunteer/marapr00/red_lake.html

I don't want to argue about any of this anyway. THAT is precisely what will be the downfall of the whole situation again. If you can't come up with anything constructive to say, then you are better off not saying anything at all.

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I looked at your post and saw the numbers and it is not stated for sure, but even if they are the hard numbers we fishermen get to fish 22% of the whole red lake system and according to those money numbers we paid for 41% of the restocking fee. It still doesn't seem fair to us the lic.holders of the state. I think the state has paid a whole lot more than those numbers for the restocking of that lake no matter what that report is stating.

For the record I think they should have left URL as a trophy crappie lake. You can get eyes in just about any other lake in the state, but having slabs that big for the general public to have a shot at them was really something special.

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"I sorta get ticked off, and really makes me fish by my own rules when I fish on lakes like that."

That is the thinking many of us had, me included, in the 70's and 80's. What did it get us? A huge lake with nobody fishing. frown.gif We've lived through this once already. It's not going to happen again!!!

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I wouldn't dispute anything you just posted. I am sure those numbers DID in fact change as they started the stocking. But the Band may have chipped in more too. I don't think we, the public will ever know for sure how much it cost in all.

I also agree, it has been AWESOME fishing for the slabs. If in fact, there could be any guarentee that it would continue like that for years & years, I would be right there with you in your plea. However, I think there should be red flags going up all over- since the FIRST year the crappies were being caught in large numbers. Why? Because right from the start, they were almost ALL the same exact size. Very seldom did you catch any small ones. What does that say? It says to me what everyone has been posting for years. There was one STELLAR year class of fish in 1995, and that's really about it. Yeah, there have been other years where they had a decent hatch. I can tell you for a fact in the early 80's 4 people fished the lake and caught a limit of walleyes AND crappies there in ONE day over Memorial day weekend. Ed & Marie Hudec could vouch for that. So the Crappies have always been there, just not sure what kind of numbers there were. Besides that one weekend, I can't remember catching more than 6 up there the rest of my life other than during the boom.

Would it have changed, and remained a "Crappie Hotbed" without the walleyes as competition? Who knows? How can we even say that the walleyes would not have made a comeback on their own at some point? We can't. And my guess is they would have. It may have taken 10 years or more, but as long as there were a few of them left, and nobody fishing for them, I think they would have taken back over on their own at some point anyway. It had ALWAYS been the best natural producing (by numbers) walleye lake in the US. The frye from the lake had at one time stocked just about every other walleye lake in Minnesota.

Hard to change what nature intended, whether we wanted to or not.

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This continues to be a difficult discussion, and probably will be for a few more years to come. The numbers stated a bit earlier are very close to correct.

The bands paid approximately 40K to the State's 20K. There may have been additional monies distributed here and there, but for the most part it plays out to be a 2:1 deal. It doesn't sound fair, but the bands will be allowed to harvest approximately 68% of the allowable quota. Slightly MORE than 2/3 of the overall allowable poundage. The harvest ratio is actually based on the overall water surface controlled by each owner. The bands control a much, much larger percentage of these lake's surface area. Like it or not, that's the way it is.

The DNR has worked very closely with the tribes to agree on a program that will sustain this fishery. The tribes have promised to "police" their own harvest, and I trust that this will be honored. They actually have much more to lose in this than we do in terms of long term income to an impoverished area. Think about the revenue that will be generated by re-opening this walleye fishery. If the resource gets raped again there may not be another alternative - like the crappie boom.

Just for the record, these fish are a Vermillian "strain" of walleyes. They have been cultivated from eggs and milt from walleyes seined in Lake Vermillion - just like the majority of Minnesota's stocking walleyes come from the eggs and milt strained from Winnibigoshish walleyes at Cutfoot Sioux. The fish themselves were not "taken" from another lake and restocked into Upper Red, so it will have no negative impact on Lake Vermillian (sp?).

I'm glad to see cooler heads prevail here. I know that it's a passionate issue, and I respect each opinion stated here, but it's extremely important to get the facts before starting an argument. The website listed above can provide excellent data on the subject.

The DNR has devised a program to monitor the overall harvest of walleyes based on an annual quota that is reached for each respective party. The mathematics behind this are solid and repeatable. The numbers have been initially set on the conservative side to protect the fishery during the first few "boom" years. If the DNR determines that the lift net numbers are stable or improving, the slots can be relaxed, or limits made more liberal. It will work - it's already working on other MN lakes.

I too grew up catching URL's walleyes. It was really sad to see the fishery get abused the way it did, and I'm not talking about the subsistance fishing. Back in the 70's there were people getting busted almost weekly with 100's of walleyes over thier limit - and those were only the ones getting caught.

My hope is that this fishery is brought back to the days when you could hardly get a minnow to the bottom of Red Lake without catching a nice 16 inch walleye. Those memories that I have as a kid camping at Sunset Lodge campground, and fishing with my Dad and brother are priceless, and I'm anxious to make those same memories with my own children.

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