New Fishing Regulations Expand Opportunities, Limit Smelt Harvest|
Michigan anglers will have several new opportunities, but also will face a new restriction, because of fishing regulation changes approved at the Nov. 6 Natural Resources Commission meeting in Lansing.
Department of Natural Resources Director Rebecca Humphries signed fisheries orders that extend the spearing season through the ice for pike and muskellunge in certain waters, extend the whitefish spearing season on the Great Lakes and connecting waters, allow all anglers to use three rods, and establish a two-gallon limit on smelt.
The spearing season for pike and muskie will now run from Dec. 1-March 15, instead of just January and February and the whitefish spearing season will now be open year-round. The new seasons are the result of legislation enabling the DNR to set spearing regulations.
Anglers have been allowed to use three rods when fishing for salmon on the Great Lakes for a number of years, but were restricted to two rods elsewhere and when pursuing other species in the Great Lakes. A survey of anglers showed overwhelming public support for three rods. The new regulation allows anglers to use three rods on all waters and in pursuit of all species, though the DNR retains the authority to reduce the rule to two rods if necessary.