DNR Fisheries to hold meeting on walleye regulation proposals

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is hosting an informational meeting to discuss walleye regulation proposals on Bowstring, Jessie and Sand lakes in Itasca County. The meeting is Wednesday, July 17, at 6:30 p.m. at the Sand Lake Community Center, on Itasca County Road 4.

The DNR will present data used to develop the proposals and give the angling public an opportunity to learn more about the proposed regulations. “Public input is an essential part of implementing special fishing regulations,” said Chris Kavanaugh, DNR Grand Rapids area fisheries supervisor. “This is an opportunity to learn more about the proposals before making formal comments.”

The proposed regulation is a 17- to 26-inch protected slot for walleye. Data for these lakes supports this change and is intended to improve fishing quality, the size and number of fish caught, while allowing harvest of the more abundant size groups. “This regulation has allowed significant improvements in a number of area lakes including, Winnibigoshish, Round, Island, Splithand and others,” Kavanaugh said.

In 2004, the DNR proposed these regulations for 10 area lakes. Public input received at that time indicated there was support for seven lakes. “We have heard from anglers on Bowstring, Sand and Jessie asking when those lakes could also have these regulations,” Kavanaugh said. “The other seven lakes in this group are currently being reviewed so it makes sense to consider these additional lakes at this time.” Regulation proposals are all independent but it is more efficient to consider them all at the same time.

For those unable to make the meeting, contact the DNR Grand Rapids Area Fisheries office or visit http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/areas/fisheries/grandrapids/index.html for more information.

Another informational meeting held in October. Comments will be accepted up to 10 days after that meeting.