Fishing opener offers new chances to hook up
Area anglers can target more than a dozen fish species year-round on Lake Michigan, Green Bay and our inland lakes and rivers, but Saturday’s “season opener” still offers a few new things to get fired up about.
Provided you have a fishing license and inland trout stamp, you can try for stocked or wild trout on a number of county creeks (Scarboro and Krok, especially) or on Krohn’s Lake, where both the Department of Natural Resources and local clubs pay for stocked fish.
If interested, be sure to pick up a copy of the 2017-18 guide to trout fishing regulations, or check it out online at dnr.wi.gov/topic/fishing/regulations/troutregs.html.
Also opening Saturday are largemouth bass on the inland lakes and smallmouth bass on the rivers (catch and release only), and smallies on Green Bay. The perch and muskie seasons remain closed on Green Bay.
New this year, there’s a live release state records category, but it’ll take a whopper and plenty of documentation to get hooked up. To learn more, visit dnr.wi.gov/topic/fishing/recordfish/LiveRelease.html.
Winter in water
In the wake of the recent tragic deaths of two kayakers in Lake Michigan off Cave Point in Door County, the U.S. Coast Guard is reminding recreational users that even on warmer spring days, it’s still winter in the water.
Water temperatures are only in the low to mid-40s on the lake, cold enough to quickly cause loss of limb function.
The Coast Guard says the use of life jackets can dramatically increase the chance of survival should you fall in. It also allows a person to float with a minimum of energy expended and allows the person to assume the Heat Escape Lessening Position (H.E.L.P.), bringing the knees close to the chest and holding them in place by wrapping the arms around the shin portions of the legs.
In addition, the Coast Guard says you should:
• Always check and monitor the marine weather forecast before any trip out onto the lake.
• Carry all required and recommended safety gear, such as visual distress signals and a sound-producing device (a quality whistle) in the pockets of the life jacket that’s being worn so it’s close at hand in an emergency.
• Always notify family and friends where you are going and when you expect to be back — and stick to the plan. If plans unexpectedly change, notify them immediately.
Kewaunee County’s Deer Advisory Council, by a 3-2 vote with one member absent, voted for a holiday antlerless gun deer hunt at its April meeting. Door County is also recommending the Dec. 24-Jan. 1 hunt.
The reversal of the previous month’s vote at the Muskrat City Sportsman’s Club was due to the number of people that thought it would be a good opportunity to get out hunting over the holiday week when family members are around. Some members of the public also supported the special opportunity.
The holiday hunt will be for the 2017 season only and can be decided on an annual basis if the county would want to have it in the future.
There was a 34-percent increase in the antlerless harvest last year, but there appear to be a lot of whitetails on the landscape and another large fawn crop is expected after a very mild winter.
CDAC members stated that with plenty of free antlerless tags available and the new holiday hunt opportunity, it will be up to the hunters of Kewaunee County to do their part in the continuing effort to keep their local herd in check.
Baltimore orioles, rose-breasted grosbeaks and ruby-throated hummingbirds should be making their way up to the Kewaunee-Door Peninsula this week.
Warblers are also beginning their push, and many white-throated and white-crowned sparrows are migrating here now. White pelicans are back, especially in the southern Green Bay to Little Sturgeon stretch.
Comment on plan
The DNR has extended the deadline to comment on a 10-year Lake Michigan fisheries management plan to May 20.
Have a good fishing photo to share? You can enter it in the BoatUS (Boat Owners Association of the United States) “Best Catch” Photo Contest for a chance to win a fishing trip with former pro angler and TV fishing personality Mark Zona. Get the details at www.BoatUS.com/catch.
Kevin Naze is a freelance outdoors writer. He can be reached by emailing [email protected] or calling 920-883-9792.
This article originally appeared on Wisconsin: Fishing opener offers new chances to hook up