2021 Sturgeon Season Comes To A Close

Sunday, Feb. 28, marked the final day of the 2021 sturgeon spearing season. It was a unique year with good water clarity and solid ice throughout the entire season.

Across the system this season, 291 juvenile females, 737 adult females, and 803 males were harvested for a total of 1,831 fish.

The Lake Winnebago harvest accounted for 1,467 fish consisting of 249 juvenile females, 660 adult females, and 558 males. This year’s Lake Winnebago harvest was the highest since the 2015 season. This season lasted the entire 16 days, though it was close to reaching the 90% triggers late in the season. This year’s Lake Winnebago harvest was driven by the favorable water clarity around portions of the lake as spearers fishing zones 1,2,3 reported they could see the bottom in most areas.

The final day’s harvest looked much like Saturday as 50 fish were harvested on Lake Winnebago. Many spearers had already pulled their shacks for the season resulting in minimal spearing effort around the lake during the final day. The busiest registration station was Blackwolf Landing, with 13 fish registered. This year, Stockbridge Harbor led all registration stations recording 303 fish. It was closely followed by Harrison Town Hall, which registered 290 fish.

The largest fish harvested on Lake Winnebago was the 135.8 pound (75.3 inches) fish speared by Kevin Ward. Kevin’s fish was an F2 female and registered at Blackwolf Landing.

Overall this season, 77 harvested fish weighed over 100 pounds, making up 4.2% of the total system-wide harvest. The percentage of fish weighing over 100 pounds in the 2021 harvest is similar to the 2019 and 2020 harvests. Over the past few seasons, the fish have been generally leaner, likely due to a diet consisting of more red worms than shad in recent years.

Click here to view the full harvest details.