The Minnesota DNR announced Friday, July 21 that walleye fishing will remain closed on Lake Mille Lacs until Friday, Aug. 11.
The central-Minnesota fishery has been closed to walleye fishing for the last two weeks and the closure was to remain in place until Friday, July 28 to protect the walleye population, according to the DNR. Up to that point, catch-and-release for walleyes had been in place this open-water season.
According to the DNR release Friday, the closure was extended “to protect the fishery and ensure the long-term sustainability of Mille Lacs Lake’s walleye population.”
The release went on to say that, “In order to extend the walleye fishing season through Labor Day, the state will allow for an additional 11,000 pounds of walleye harvest. Catch-and-release walleye fishing will run from Friday, Aug. 11, through Monday, Sept. 4, for the Labor Day weekend. Walleye fishing will then be closed from Tuesday, Sept. 5, through Thursday, Nov. 30.”
According to the DNR, the decision to allow for the additional harvest was made with input from the Mille Lacs Fisheries Advisory Committee.
As with the current closure, fishing for all other species at Mille Lacs will remain open during the extended closure, with only artificial baits and lures allowed in possession, except for anglers targeting northern pike or muskie, who may fish with sucker minnows longer than 8 inches.
A prohibition on night fishing will remain in place from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. through Nov. 30. However, anglers may fish for muskie and northern pike at night, but may only use artificial lures longer than 8 inches or sucker minnows longer than 8 inches, according to the DNR release. Bowfishing for rough fish also is allowed at night, but possession of angling equipment is not allowed and only rough fish may be in possession, the release said.
For more information on the regulation adjustments and more, go to www.mndnr.gov/millelacslake.