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Monday, April 15th, 2024

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Monday, April 15th, 2024

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Steve Weisman

Iowa hatcheries collect 200 million walleye eggs to boost stocking with ideal netting conditions this year

Each spring, fisheries biologists and hatchery personnel prepare for the Iowa DNR’s annual gill netting and egg collection that results in stocked walleyes in many state waters. Four hatcheries take part in the collection: Lake Rathbun, Storm Lake, Clear Lake and Spirit Lake, with collected eggs transported to either the Lake Rathbun Hatchery or the Spirit Lake Hatchery.

Iowa hatcheries collect 200 million walleye eggs to boost stocking with ideal netting conditions this year Read More »

Farm ponds produce some great fishing in Iowa

In 2023, 186 qualifying catches in Iowa’s Master Angler Program were taken at farm ponds across the state. The Master Angler Program recognizes “memorable-sized catches” for more than 40 fish species. 
Farm ponds produced most of the fish that fit that category last year. Next on the list was West Lake Okoboji with 58 qualifying catches, while East Lake Okoboji was third with 46 qualifying catches.

Farm ponds produce some great fishing in Iowa Read More »

Student Angler Federation’s Junior and High School Bass Fishing Iowa State Championships returning to the Okobojis

For the second consecutive year, Bass Federation’s (TBF) Student Angler Federation (SAF) is returning to the Okoboji Chain of Lakes for the SAF Iowa State Championships.
This year’s championship will be held on April 27.
“Last year we had nearly 50 boats consisting of two youth partners per boat for the 2023 SAF Championships,” said SAF Youth Director Bob Harris. “With the leagues growing across the state, I am anticipating we could approach 70 teams this year.”

Student Angler Federation’s Junior and High School Bass Fishing Iowa State Championships returning to the Okobojis Read More »

Big money up for grabs during the 42nd Annual Walleye Weekend on Iowa Great Lakes

Each year the Iowa Great Lakes Area kicks off the walleye season with the Iowa Great Lakes Area Walleye Weekend tournament put on by the Iowa Great Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce. This year’s tournament begins at midnight on Saturday, May 4, and ends at 11:59 a.m. on Sunday, May 5.
This is the 42nd annual event, and to help celebrate the event, 10 tagged walleyes have been released into the Iowa Great Lakes chain of lakes with the grand prize for catching one of these tagged walleyes this year set at $42,000.

Big money up for grabs during the 42nd Annual Walleye Weekend on Iowa Great Lakes Read More »

The journey back for the bald eagle, and where to find them in Iowa

Winter into the early days of March are a great time for Iowans throughout the state to enjoy witnessing bald eagles, the national symbol of our country.
During this time, many eagles from northern states and Canada migrate south to find food. Traditionally, the highest concentration of eagles in the Midwest is along the Mississippi River with anywhere from 4,000 to 7,000 bald eagles wintering along the Mississippi, from the Twin Cities in Minnesota to 50 miles south of St. Louis.

The journey back for the bald eagle, and where to find them in Iowa Read More »

Wetlands to be established on Iowa’s Okoboji View Wetland Complex

The final touches on Iowa’s Okoboji View Wetland Complex, a major clean water project near the Okoboji View Golf Course west of West Lake Okoboji, are scheduled for this spring with completion by the end of this June.
The Natural Resources Commission approved the project at its January meeting. The project involves a 78-acre waterfowl protection area, the George Wylie Phelps Wildlife Area, on which two separate wetland pools will be restored.

Wetlands to be established on Iowa’s Okoboji View Wetland Complex Read More »

Iowa DNR shares hunting and trapping results from 2023 during public meetings

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources hosted a total of 18 town hall style meetings on Feb. 20-21 across the state to recap hunting and trapping seasons, discuss possible rule changes and to address comments from those who attended the meetings.
“Feedback from all the meetings was positive with all of them lasting at least two hours, which meant they were having good discussions,” said Todd Bishop, Wildlife bureau Chief for the state of Iowa.

Iowa DNR shares hunting and trapping results from 2023 during public meetings Read More »

Iowa’s Ice Hole Festival on West Okoboji leads to Recreational Ice Diving Certification

The weekend of Feb. 9-11, as the ice fishing season was pretty much drawing to an end on the Iowa Great Lakes, my son, who was fishing off Triboji on the north end of West Okoboji, told me about a bunch of people off Pike’s Point.
My first thought was maybe a late perch bite, because my son said they appeared to be out in pretty deep water. However, he told me, “But, dad, they didn’t act like ice fishermen. They were all kind of bunched up in a group.”
After a little research, I found the answer, and it was certainly an interesting one.

Iowa’s Ice Hole Festival on West Okoboji leads to Recreational Ice Diving Certification Read More »

Here’s what it takes to get a Master Angler Award in Iowa

I am often asked what size of fish it takes to get a Master Angler Award in the state of Iowa.
So, I did some digging on the Iowa DNR website, and this is what I found for nearly 40 fish species.
Holly Luft, who has administered both the Mast Angler Award and the First Fish Award, notes the awards are popular.
“Between the two, we will process between 5,000-6,000 applications each year,” Luft said.

Here’s what it takes to get a Master Angler Award in Iowa Read More »

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