DNR proposal has bass, walleye opener on same date

  • Article by: DOUG SMITH , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 28, 2014 - 12:20 AM

Minnesota’s bass fishing season would open statewide on the walleye opener under a proposal by the Department of Natural Resources.

“I’m all for it,’’ said Vern Wagner, a longtime bass-fishing addict and vice president of Anglers for Habitat, which pushed for the change.

There is a caveat: The first two weeks of the bass season would be catch-and-release only everywhere except the northeast, where the season currently opens two weeks before the rest of the state.

“With climate change, bass populations are expanding in Minnesota,’’ said Linda Erickson-Eastwood, DNR fisheries program manager. “We decided to get rid of the split season between the northeast and the rest of the state.’’

Wagner agrees with the DNR that the additional fishing shouldn’t hurt the bass population. The traditional bass opener was intended to protect spawning bass, but Wagner said bass often are spawning even after the season opens.

It is among several proposed fishing regulation changes the DNR intends to adopt and is accepting comments.

Among other proposals:

• A statewide catch-and-release season for sturgeon would be June 16 to April 14, including border waters where there currently isn’t a season. “It will open up more opportunities to fish for sturgeon,’’ Erickson-Eastwood said.

• Flathead catfish fishing would close during the winter, when the fish are vulnerable to overharvest.

• Archers bowfishing for rough fish would be required to have barbs on their arrows. The Legislature inadvertently deleted that requirement.

• Border waters rules would be made more consistent with adjoining states’ rules. For example, darkhouses now will be legal on waters bordering South and North Dakota.

Questions, comments or requests for a hearing can be sent to linda.erickson-eastwood@state.mn.us.

Changes to muskie rules

Gov. Mark Dayton has signed a law setting a 54-inch statewide muskie minimum size, starting in 2015. But there will be some exceptions. The minimum size muskies that can be kept on border waters will be 50 inches, except on the Iowa border, where it will be 40 inches, and South Dakota border, where it will be 54 inches. The minimum size will remain 48 inches on some lakes with special regulations, and 40 inches in 21 metro lakes with tiger muskies.

Fishing license sales

Minnesota sold about 461,500 fishing licenses through Friday, up 64,000 from last year, but down about 7 percent from the 10-year average.


Doug Smith • doug.smith@startribune.com

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

Click here to send us your hunting or fishing photos – and to see what others are showing off from around the region.


Chicago Cubs - J. Arrieta 11:35 AM
Cincinnati - D. Axelrod
NY Yankees - H. Kuroda 12:08 PM
Detroit - K. Lobstein
Colorado - J. Lyles 2:45 PM
San Francisco - Y. Petit
Tampa Bay - J. Hellickson 6:05 PM
Baltimore - B. Norris
Atlanta - M. Minor 6:10 PM
NY Mets - J. Niese
Cleveland - C. Carrasco 7:10 PM
Chicago WSox - J. Danks
Minnesota - T. Milone 7:10 PM
Kansas City - J. Guthrie
Texas - N. Tepesch 7:10 PM
Houston - C. McHugh
Oakland - S. Gray 9:05 PM
LA Angels - C. Wilson
Atlanta 5:00 PM
Detroit 6:00 PM
Indianapolis 6:00 PM
Kansas City 6:00 PM
Green Bay
NY Jets 6:00 PM
St. Louis 6:00 PM
Carolina 6:30 PM
New England 6:30 PM
NY Giants
Washington 6:30 PM
Tampa Bay
Baltimore 7:00 PM
New Orleans
Chicago 7:00 PM
Denver 7:00 PM
Minnesota 7:00 PM
San Francisco 7:00 PM
Arizona 9:00 PM
San Diego
Seattle 9:00 PM
(21) Texas A&M 5:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Wake Forest 6:02 PM
Boise State 7:00 PM
(18) Ole Miss
Tulane 7:00 PM
Temple 8:15 PM
Rutgers 9:00 PM
Washington St
Weber State 9:30 PM
(19) Arizona State
BYU 8/29/14 6:00 PM
(6) Jacksonville St 8/29/14 6:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Bowling Green 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Western Ky
TX-San Antonio 8/29/14 8:00 PM
Colorado State 8/29/14 8:00 PM
UNLV 8/29/14 9:30 PM
Penn State 8/30/14 7:30 AM
Troy 8/30/14 11:00 AM
(7) UCLA 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Western Mich 8/30/14 11:00 AM
(5) Ohio State 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Appalachian St 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Ga Southern 8/30/14 11:30 AM
NC State
Boston College 8/30/14 2:00 PM
West Virginia 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(2) Alabama
Rice 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
(10) South Dakota St 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(24) Missouri
Fla Atlantic 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(22) Nebraska
California 8/30/14 2:30 PM
Marshall 8/30/14 2:30 PM
UC Davis 8/30/14 3:00 PM
(11) Stanford
Arkansas 8/30/14 3:00 PM
(6) Auburn
(16) Clemson 8/30/14 4:30 PM
(12) Georgia
Liberty 8/30/14 5:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Ohio U 8/30/14 5:00 PM
Kent State
Louisiana Tech 8/30/14 6:00 PM
(4) Oklahoma
Idaho 8/30/14 6:00 PM
Stephen F Austin 8/30/14 6:10 PM
(20) Kansas State
Fresno State 8/30/14 6:30 PM
(15) USC
Southern Miss 8/30/14 6:30 PM
Miss State
Texas-El Paso 8/30/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
North Texas 8/30/14 7:00 PM
(1) Florida State 8/30/14 7:00 PM
Oklahoma State
(14) Wisconsin 8/30/14 8:00 PM
(13) LSU
South Dakota 8/30/14 9:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(25) Washington 8/30/14 9:30 PM
Utah State 8/31/14 6:00 PM
SMU 8/31/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
Miami-Florida 9/1/14 7:00 PM
Ottawa 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Winnipeg 8/31/14 3:00 PM
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: Should the lake where the albino muskie was caught remain a mystery?

Weekly Question