DNR seeks comment on proposed experimental walleye regulations in northern Cook County

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is seeking public input on experimental walleye regulations being considered for Saganaga, Sea Gull, and Gull lakes, and the Sea Gull River. All are located in Cook County, on or near the Minnesota-Ontario border. Regulations may include a 17-inch minimum size requirement and a limit of three fish, with only one fish over 20 inches allowed.

The regulations are being considered in response to concerns from anglers over a lack of smaller walleye in these waters, coupled with DNR assessment data showing declines in the number of walleye of all sizes present.

The minimum size limit is intended to protect younger fish from harvest, to maximize returns from natural reproduction and stocking.  The lower bag limit is intended to prevent harvest of too many fish.  The restriction on the number of fish over 20 inches has been included to be consistent with statewide walleye regulations, and to prevent overharvest of the largest walleye in these waters.

Two public meetings will be held to collect input on these proposals.

An open house will be held at the DNR Headquarters, 500 Lafayette Road, St. Paul on Wednesday Sept. 24, from 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Staff will be available to take comments on this proposal and other fishing regulations under review around the state.

A public meeting will be held at the Cook County Community Center,
317 West Fifth St., Grand Marais, on Saturday Sept. 27 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Grand Marais area fisheries staff will be on hand at that meeting to take comments on this proposal only.

The DNR will also continue to take input on the proposal for the remainder of the summer; comments will be accepted through October 7, 2014.

Questions and comments can be directed to the DNR fisheries office in Grand Marais at
218-387-3056, by email to Grand Marais area fisheries supervisor, Steve Persons at steve.persons@state.mn.us, or by mail to DNR Fisheries, 1356 E. Highway 61, Grand Marais, MN 55604.