Sturgeon Report – 2-16-15

Here’s today’s Air Tech Sturgeon Update from Ryan Koenigs from Wisconsin DNR


Dear Winnebago System Sturgeon Enthusiasts:

Day 3 of the 2015 spear fishery has come and gone and the harvest continues to stay strong. Spearers harvested a total of 233 fish from Lake Winnebago
today, while the Upriver Lakes harvest included 36 fish. For the 3rd day in a row Stockbridge Harbor remained tops on the lake (62 fish)
in terms of number of fish registered, with Payne’s Point being a close 2nd (53 fish). A more detailed breakdown of the numbers registered
at each station can be viewed in the attached PDF document.
Only 7 adult females were harvested from the Upriver Lakes today, meaning that we are still 8 adult females from the 90% trigger. At this time I’m guessing
we would eclipse the 90% trigger on Wednesday, but may be able to get there tomorrow. Therefore, it’s likely that the Upriver Lakes season will close
either Wednesday or Thursday. On Lake Winnebago, we have reached 65% of the adult female harvest caps after 3 days. I’m anticipating harvest numbers
to decrease over the next few days, and I anticipate we may reach the 90% trigger sometime later this week and the season is expected to close as early
as Thursday or as late as Saturday.
Only 3 fish 100+ pounds were speared today with the largest being the 119.5 pound, 74.3” fish registered at Critter’s by Robin O’Connell of Winneconne
(attached photo). I was also able to track down a photo of the largest fish speared thus far this season (129.3 pound, 78.2” by Tom Reise yesterday)
and have included that photo as well.
As you are all aware, I like a good sturgeon spearing story as much as the next spearer. I was able to get out on the ice today, but unfortunately I did
not see a fish. However, Hunter Levenhagen of Oshkosh fared much better. Hunter (19) was lucky enough to spear a fish today during his 1st ever spearing season. On top of that the fish was 110.0 pounds and 73.2” long, registered at Wendt’s today. The story is the icing on the cake though.
It turns out Hunter hit the fish on his first throw, but the spear bounced off the fish. However, the contact stunned the fish temporarily and Hunter
was able to retrieve the spear and re-throw to land this fish and join the 100 pound club. Now if that isn’t a “fish tale” I don’t know what is. Congratulation
Hunter and I’m sure that you are now “hooked” on this sport for life.

Good luck spearing tomorrow and during the remainder of the season!