On select Wisconsin lakes, 28-inch muskie size limit encourages keepers
Every two months or so, Larry Meiller invites three outdoor writers on as guests of his Wisconsin Public Radio show. Patrick Durkin, Tim Eisele and myself were on Larry’s show Wednesday, May 30.
One listener called in with a question about fishing Day Lake in Ashland County, where he found the lake to have a 28-inch muskie size limit. He wondered if the DNR put that size limit in place to encourage anglers to keep a muskie or two.
The answer to that question is yes. Wisconsin lakes with 28-inch size limits made that list because they exhibit slow growth rates and above-average natural reproductions rates. Some, but not all, of those lakes could also have a limited forage base upon which those muskies must survive. Local fish biologists requested that size limit for those lakes in hopes that anglers would keep a few muskies. If that happens, we might see improved growth rates.
There are 15 lakes, plus the Spider/Moquah chain, in six Wisconsin counties that have the 28-inch muskie size limit, with a bag limit of one per day, according to 2016 regulations:
- Price County: Butternut and Solberg.
- Vilas County: Upper Gresham.
- Oneida County: Bearskin, Booth, Julia (near Three Lakes), Squaw.
- Ashland County : English, Mineral, Day, East Twin, Spider/Moquah Chain, Spillerberg, Potter.
- Iron County: Owl.
- Sawyer: Black.