Panfish Project in Progress

Bureau of Fisheries staff have been busy this spring conducting trap net surveys in waters across the state to monitor the impacts of new fishing regulations for sunfish and crappie. This work is part of the Big Panfish Initiative, a five-year study to determine if more conservative fishing regulations result in improvements to the size structures of sunfish and crappie populations, providing more consistent opportunities to catch bigger fish. The study includes annually monitoring the 11 lakes where a daily limit of 15 and a minimum size limit of 8 inches have been established for sunfish. There are also 9 lakes where the statewide crappie minimum size limit increase from 9 to 10 inches is being evaluated.

For more information on this program, check out our Sunfish and Crappie Management webpage. The 2021 survey results will be posted later this summer.

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