Sturgeon Report 2-18-15

Here’s today’s Sturgeon Update from Ryan Koenigs of Wisconsin DNR

Dear Winnebago System Sturgeon Enthusiasts:
The 5th day of the 2015 sturgeon spearing season is in the books with a total harvest of 166 fish (152 from Lake Winnebago and 14 from the Upriver Lakes).  The largest fish harvested today was registered at Critter’s by Thomas Hillman (70.9” and 125.1 pounds) (photo).  
Today marked the final day of the 2015 spear fishery on the Upriver Lakes.  The season closed with a harvest of 288 fish (59.5% of license holders), including 9 fish tipping the scales at more than 100 pounds. As I stated yesterday the 5 day season is on par with the average season on the Upriver Lakes since the lottery fishery was implemented in 2007.  
The 152 fish harvested from Lake Winnebago bring the season total to 1,447 fish.  The 66 adult females harvested today bring us to within 63 adult females of the 90% trigger for the System-wide harvest caps.  I’m guessing tomorrow’s harvest will be cutting it pretty close to that mark.  We are 151 adult females away from the 100% closure as well, meaning that even if we do not reach the 90% trigger tomorrow we may reach the closure if effort and harvest ramp up on Friday.  It really will be touch and go on season length with the season closing either Friday or Saturday.  The largest fish harvested to on Lake Winnebago was a 121.0 pound, 70.5” female registered by Ralph Nett at Waverly Beach (photo). 
As you may know, this season marks the 3rd season that 12-13 year old youth are able to sturgeon spear.  While working at Payne’s Point today I helped register a fish harvested by Logan Roehl of Neshkoro.  Logan is a 12 year old spearer and was lucky enough to harvest a fish in his first year spearing!  His dad was with him to register the fish and let me tell you it was hard to decide who was more excited Logan or his proud father.  Congratulations Logan and thank you for your interest in the sport of sturgeon spearing.  It’s great to see youth show interest in the sport, because after all these are our future spearers!
Until my report tomorrow, good luck out there and throw straight!