February 11, 2020 – Fond du Lac, WI – Tuesday, February 11 was day 4 of the 2020 sturgeon spearing season, meaning 25% of the season is now complete. There were 35 lake sturgeon harvested today with 15 fish coming from Lake Winnebago and 20 from the Upriver Lakes. The Upriver Lakes harvest included four adult females, bringing the season total to 44. We are now 42 adult females away from the 90% trigger meaning that this fishery will continue for quite some time, quite possibly the full 16-days. A breakdown of the number of fish registered at each station can be viewed below:
The largest fish in today’s harvest was 104.7 pounds (72.8 inches) and registered at Stockbridge Harbor by Lance Olson.
The largest fish from the Upriver Lakes harvest was 75.4 pounds (66.3″) and registered at Critter’s by Mayson Muche. Congratulations to Lance, Mayson, and the other 33 spearers who filled their tag today.
Today’s Vignette: “The 1960 Sturgeon Spearing Season”
Yesterday’s vignette highlighted the 1950 sturgeon spearing season on Lake Winnebago. Today we will skip ahead a decade to remember the 1960 spearing season. I’ve provided a link to an intra-department memorandum put together by Gordon Priegel following the 1960 spearing season.
Here are a few highlights from that season:
-520 lake sturgeon were harvested.
-The average fish measured 55 inches and weighed 44 pounds.
-Four fish larger than 100 pounds were registered with the largest fish being 108 pounds (72 inches) and registered by Edward Jewson of Fond du Lac.
-2,688 licenses were sold for the 1960 spearing season.
-1,417 shanties were out on opening day.
-There was a 40-inch minimum length limit.
-The bag limit was 1 fish per season. 1960 was actually the third season with a 1-fish limit, the limit had been 5 fish per season as recently as 1953.