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Tag Archive | "fishing"

Weekly fishing tip

From the Michigan DNR

Gear maintenance an important task
With the colder months quickly approaching, many anglers may be getting ready to store their gear for the season. There are a few maintenance tips you should follow so your quality gear is ready to be used next season.
1. The biggest tip is to always make sure all of your gear is clean and completely dry before storing it. Start by cleaning everything (rods, reels and lines) in fresh water with soap or the manufacturer’s recommended solution to remove any materials that may have become attached or embedded.
2. Now is a great time to inspect your gear for any damage and make repairs, or prepare for replacements.
3. Don’t store any of your gear in direct sunlight and don’t store any of your gear where heat and/or moisture might build up.
4. Have waders? Air them out completely and don’t forget to hang them upside down for the months they are out of use.
Check out the DNR’s weekly fishing tip, obtained from various angling resources throughout the country. Go to www.michigan.gov/dnr and click on fishing, then weekly fishing tip.

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Weekly fishing report

From the Department of Natural Resources

Steelhead action continues to build in the river systems. November is the month where catch rates increase for perch, pike, whitefish, walleye, bass and steelhead. Some decent bluegill fishing was reported on inland lakes. This is a good time of year to grab a pole and head out for some fall fishing.
Southwest Lower Peninsula Fishing Report as of Nov. 3
St. Joseph: Pier anglers continue to catch good numbers of whitefish when using a small hook with a single egg. Steelhead were also caught.
St. Joseph River: Has good steelhead action all the way up to the Berrien Springs Dam. A few chinook were still going through the fish ladder at Berrien Springs. The river still has plenty of fish but few anglers were out.
South Haven: Whitefish and a couple steelhead have been caught however fishing pressure was low. Anglers are using spawn bags or a single egg on a small hook.
Kalamazoo River: The salmon run is reaching its end but steelhead activity is starting to increase up near the Allegan Dam.
Grand Haven: Is producing some steelhead off the pier but catch rates were still hit-or-miss. Those fishing the south pier caught whitefish on a single egg or spikes.
Grand River at Grand Rapids: Is still producing a few leftover salmon however most are targeting steelhead, especially up near the Sixth Street Dam. Try spawn, spinners, small spoons, or a jig and wax worm. A few walleye were also caught.
Grand River at Lansing: Steelhead were caught at Lyons but the fish have not made it up to Lansing. Walleye were caught over at Moore’s Park.
Looking Glass River: Is producing some pike for those fishing with minnows.
Muskegon: Is producing some steelhead for those fishing off the pier with spawn.
Muskegon Lake: Has walleye for the taking. Boat anglers slow trolling in the late evening have caught fish.
Muskegon River: Water levels are good and lots of steelhead are downstream from Newaygo. Some are fly fishing while others are floating fresh spawn. Walleye and northern pike have been caught near Hardy Dam. Those fishing upstream of Hardy Dam have caught some big smallmouth bass.
You can now get the weekly fishing reports sent to your email address. To sign up, visit the weekly fishing report at www.michigan.gov/fishing.

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Catch of the Week!


Ashlynn Davis, 4, of Cedar Springs, caught this bluegill while fishing with her dad, in a creek near Lincoln Lake, in Spencer Township. And what special gear brought in this fabulous fish? A Dora the Explorer fishing pole, of course! This is the second fish that Ashlynn has caught, with the first one being caught in Texas.
Way to go, Ashlynn! You made the Post Catch of the Week!

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Trout fishing at state forest campgrounds and parks

Looking for a vacation destination that combines great fishing, beautiful scenery, and affordability? Many of Michigan’s state parks and forest campgrounds are located on or near high-quality trout waters.

Michigan boasts more than 130 state parks and state forest campgrounds that are within one mile of a trout lake or stream.

The Department of Natural Resources’ Forest Management Division and Fisheries Division have teamed up with the Michigan Chapter of Trout Unlimited to collate and catalog these opportunities. Maps of campground locations and corresponding fishing opportunities are available online at www.michigan.gov/dnrrecreationcamping and www.michigan.gov/fishing.

Campgrounds near trout fishing are located throughout the state. In southern lower Michigan, state parks provide the camping experience. In the Upper Peninsula and northern Lower Peninsula, there are camping opportunities in both state parks and state forest campgrounds.  All offer a unique experience.

“State forest campgrounds provide an opportunity for anglers to enjoy great fishing in a rustic setting,” says Lynne Boyd, chief of the DNR Forest Management Division.

The state parks offer many fishing opportunities for everyone from the first-timer to experienced anglers, said Ron Olson, chief of the DNR Parks and Recreation Division. Trout fishing is available everywhere from Spring Mill Pond in Island Lake State Recreation Area to Tippy Dam on the Manistee River.

“The diversity of camping locations and the diversity of trout fishing experiences available are numerous, and would likely take any one person years to experience,” said Jim Dexter, acting chief of the DNR Fisheries Division.

The Recreation Passport has replaced motor vehicle permits for entry into Michigan state parks, recreation areas and state-administered boating access fee sites. Michigan residents can purchase the Recreation Passport ($10 for motor vehicles; $5 for motorcycles) by checking “YES” on their license plate renewal forms, or at any state park or recreation area. To learn more about the Recreation Passport, visit www.michigan.gov/recreationpassport or call (517) 241-7275.

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DNR to raise Great Lakes muskies rather than northern muskies

The Department of Natural Resources plans to raise Great Lakes (spotted) muskellunge at its Wolf Lake State Fish Hatchery this year, a change of direction from the northern muskies the department has raised in the past.

“This is a key turning point in our muskellunge production program,” said DNR Fish Production Manager Gary Whelan. “This strain of muskellunge is native to most of Michigan; the northern muskellunge is native to only a small portion of the far western Upper Peninsula in the Wisconsin River drainage.

“The spotted muskellunge will be more at home in more waters than northern muskies.”

The DNR has been studying the idea of raising spotted muskies for more than a decade, but did not want to bring the Great Lake strain into the hatchery system while raising northern muskies because of potential disease concerns.  DNR Fisheries Division personnel plan to take 1.5 million eggs from spotted muskies in Lake St. Clair and the Detroit River this spring with a goal of producing 40,000 10- to 12-inch fall fingerlings.

In order to minimize the risk of spreading disease, the DNR will not take eggs from northern muskellunge this year, but will evaluate the need to produce northern strain muskies in the future.  Ideally, the department will address the disease concerns and be able to raise both strains in the future, Whelan said.

To learn more about fishing in Michigan, go to www.michigan.gov/dnrfishing.

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Fishing guides need permit on lakes and streams

The Department of Natural Resources reminds fishing guides who utilize state-owned lands to access Michigan’s inland lakes or streams as part of their commercial operation that they are required to have written permission from the DNR prior to using state- owned lands.

Since 2006, inland fishing guides in Michigan have been required to obtain written permission, in the form of a lease to use state-owned public water access sites.  Guides pay an annual Use of Land fee, must also provide proof of general liability insurance, and must have a state-issued inland pilot’s license or a U.S. Coast Guard captain’s license.  Use of Land fees provide funding for maintenance of state forest lands, including public-water access sites.

Michigan residents and visitors have an abundant supply of freshwater inland lakes, streams and Great Lakes that provide a variety of recreational fishing opportunities.  Annually, it is estimated that two million residents and visitors fish Michigan waters.  Michigan’s recreational fishery has an annual economic value of more than $2 billion and provides more than 15,000 jobs statewide.

For more information, contact, Brenda Mikula, DNR Parks and Recreation Division, at 231-597-0472 or visit www.michigan.gov/dnrfishing and click on Angler Information, Inland Fishing Guides, to find a link for the fishing guide lease application form.

For information on how to obtain an inland pilot license, contact, Sylvia Roossien, DNR Law Enforcement Division, at 517-241-3793.

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Free fishing weekend

The Department of Natural Resources and Environment reminds everyone that Winter Free Fishing Weekend is scheduled for Saturday, Feb 19, and Sunday, Feb. 20. On that weekend, everyone—residents and non-residents alike—can fish without a license, though all other fishing regulations apply.
Michigan has been celebrating Winter Free Fishing Weekend annually since 2000 as a way to promote awareness of the state’s aquatic resources. With more than 3,000 miles of Great Lakes shoreline, 36,000 miles of rivers and 11,000 inland lakes, Michigan and fishing are a natural match.
“Fishing is a perfect way for families to spend time together while enjoying the beautiful scenery Michigan has to offer in the wintertime,” said DNRE Director Rodney Stokes. “It is a low-cost and interactive outdoor activity—perfect for engaging children in the great outdoors.”
A number of activities at state parks have been scheduled to coincide with the weekend, while clubs, local communities and conservation organizations are also staging events. Many provide bait and free use of equipment. The events often include experienced anglers willing to introduce novices into the joy of fishing.
For a list of Free Fishing Events scheduled across the state, visit www.michigan.gov/freefishing.

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DNR certifies new state record pumpkinseed fish

OUT-Pumpkinseed-fishThe Department of Natural Resources has certified a 2.15-pound pumpkinseed caught Oct. 26 from Lake Nepessing as a state record.

Deaunti Kemp of Flint was fishing with a leaf worm on the Lapeer County lake when he caught the 12-1/2 inch sunfish. Kemp’s pumpkinseed eclipsed the record of 1.58 pounds, set in June this year from Pickerel Lake in Emmet County.

The pumpkinseed marks the fifth time a state record fish has been caught in 2009. New state benchmarks have also been set for Great Lakes muskellunge, brown trout and redear sunfish.

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Three reasons for Americans to respect hunters, anglers

National Hunting and Fishing Day is set for Sept. 26, 2009. Congress formalized the annual celebration 37 years ago but organizers say hunters and anglers deserve America’s respect now more than ever.

OUT-National-hunting-Deer-t“Recent-year surveys show nearly 8 in 10 Americans approve of hunting and more than 9 in 10 approve of fishing. That’s strong support. But, when viewed in the context of a recession and other modern headlines, our sporting traditions look even better today,” said Denise Wagner of Wonders of Wildlife museum in Springfield, Mo., the official home of NHF Day.

She added, “On NHF Day, I hope people will pause to reflect on hunter and angler contributions to society. And for those of us who’ve long understood and enjoyed these passions, share the pride by introducing someone new to hunting, fishing or shooting.”

Here are three reasons for the American public to value hunting and fishing today:

Economic Impact

No bailouts needed here. Hunting and angling together are an economic force worth $76 billion a year. In 2010, America’s economic stimulus package will generate its highest level of federal spending at $236 billion—but hunters and anglers will spend almost a third of that amount all by themselves. A Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation report shows if hunters and anglers were a nation, their Gross Domestic Product would rank 57 out of 181 countries. About 1.6 million jobs depend on hunters and anglers. Gas stations, stores, restaurants, hotels and other businesses benefit, especially in rural America. And these recreations are comparatively recession proof. In the first half of 2009, hunting and fishing license sales actually gained 7.6 and 5.4 percent, respectively, over 2008, say the National Shooting Sports Foundation and Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation.

Wildlife Management

Rabies, crop damages, nuisances. Hunting helps control these wildlife issues and many others—none more dramatic than highway accidents involving deer. White-tailed deer once were on the verge of extinction but rebounded behind historic conservation efforts. Today, deer numbers are skyrocketing. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety estimates 1.5 million deer collisions occur each year. Over 200 people are killed annually. According to a Western Transportation Institute calculation that includes costs of emergency response, injuries to driver and passengers, damages to vehicle and more, the 2009 average cost of hitting a deer is $6,600. Total public cost: $9.9 billion a year. Now consider that, nationwide, for every deer hit by a motorist, hunters take six. Imagine the human casualties and costs if hunting ended.

Conservation Funding

What if Congress announced a tax increase to cover $2 billion in annual expenses for conservation programs? Don’t worry. Hunters and anglers are already paying that tab. For the privilege of consuming surplus, renewable game and fish resources, hunters and anglers purchase licenses. They also pay special excise taxes on firearms, ammunition, bows, arrows, rods and reels. Combined, these fees generate $100,000 every 30 minutes, more than $1.75 billion per year, for wildlife, fisheries and habitat programs. Hunters and anglers also contribute another $300 million a year to nonprofit organizations that extend conservation benefits even further. Results have brought many species—turkey, elk pronghorn, Canada goose, wood duck and others—and their habitats from vanishing to flourishing. These efforts enabled restoration of other species such as wolves. America’s living landscape is a precious asset for all citizens who enjoy wildlife and wild places.

For more information, visit www.nhfday.org.

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DNR reminds anglers about bait restrictions

As salmon begin making their way up the state’s rivers from the Great Lakes, the Department of Natural Resources reminds anglers that the use of salmon eggs and minnows for bait is restricted in some waters as part of a strategy to slow the spread of viral hemorrhagic septicemia (VHS).

VHS, a disease that causes fish to die from internal bleeding, has caused mortalities among a number of species of fish in Michigan in both the Great Lakes and inland waters. The disease has been found and has caused fish kills in Michigan’s waters of Lake Erie and Lake Huron. VHS has been found in Lake Michigan, but not in Michigan’s waters. Inland, it has been found in Budd Lake in Clare County and in Baseline Line Lake in Washtenaw County. VHS has not been found in Lake Superior.

“Basically, if you don’t take any spawn out of the watershed it came from and you fish below the first upstream barrier from the Great Lakes, you are legal,” said DNR fisheries biologist Gary Whelan.

“But you can not use it upstream from the first dam or in another body of water.”

Anglers who purchase spawn for bait should look for certified VHS-disinfected spawn as this bait can be used anywhere in the state. Certified VHS-free spawn and minnows are widely available and can be used up to 14 days after purchase.

Anglers who purchase bait must retain their receipt to prove it is disease-free. Uncertified bait may only be used in waters that have tested positive for VHS, as listed in Fisheries Order 245 which can be found on the DNR’s Web site at www.michigan.gov/vhs, and uncertified bait can be used for only three days after purchase.

“There is no known treatment for VHS,” Whelan said. “Our best defense against it is trying to prevent its spread.”

Anglers and boaters can help prevent the spread of VHS, as well as

other invasive species, by taking a few simple precautions:

  • Do not move fish from one body or water to another
  • Do not empty bait buckets into the water
  • Drain live wells and bilges when leaving the water
  • Disinfect boats between uses

For more details on all aspects of VHS and fishing regulations specific to VHS, check the DNR Web site at www.michigan.gov/vhs.

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