Ice huts in Green Bay in 2018. Photo by Tim Sweet.
The first single-digit temperatures of the season on Tuesday put a thin layer of ice on some of the area’s fishing holes, but it’s still far from certain.
It’s a different story in the far north of the state, where anglers have been able to walk in protected bays for the past two weeks.
High temperatures in the mid-30s are back in the forecast, with the possibility of lows to mid-40 in a few days next week. The 15 day forecast showed highs above zero until the Christmas holidays. So it’s highly likely that not much will happen until the New Year.
Some fishermen have thrown the open waters of the Ahnapee River between Algoma and Forestville. The northern pike bite was very good, with a few trophy-sized fish reported as well as many smaller fish. A big pike, caught by Dennis Andre from Algoma, had 50 tiny shits in its stomach! Photos can be viewed in Algoma, Wisc. Fishing Facebook page.
The river also produced a few remaining brown trout, rainbow trout, and coho. Try throwing spoons, spinners, or stickbaits for mixed bags of pike and trout.
Meanwhile, if you’re reading this just off the press, the deadline to apply for Spring Wild Turkey and Fall Black Bear permits is 11:59 p.m. on Friday, December 10. If you missed it for the bear, you’re out of luck. . However, if you forgot to request a turkey tag, leftovers will be served in March.
On the hunting scene, the muzzleloading deer season ended on Wednesday and a four-day antlerless deer hunt concludes on Sunday, December 12. Archers and crossbow users can revert to full camouflage from December 13 through December 12. 23, then burst the flaming orange again on December 24. 1 in another antlerless deer hunt only. Camo returns the rest of January for an extended bow and crossbow hunt in Door and Kewaunee counties.
Great Lakes proposals
The US Fish and Wildlife Service accepts project proposals to protect, restore and enhance Great Lakes fish and wildlife habitat under the Great Lakes Fish and Wildlife Restoration Act.
The six objectives of the law are:
â¢ Restore and maintain self-sufficient fish and wildlife resources.
â¢ Minimize the impacts of contaminants on fish and wildlife resources.
â¢ Protect, maintain and, where degraded and destroyed, restore fish and wildlife habitat, including the enhancement and creation of wetlands that result in a net gain in the quantity of such habitats.
â¢ Stop illegal activities having a negative impact on fish and wildlife resources.
â¢ Restore threatened and endangered species to sustainable and self-sustaining levels.
â¢ Protect, manage and conserve migratory birds.
Supported in part by the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, the agency expects approximately $ 1.8 million to support the proposals during the fiscal year.
Meanwhile, U.S. Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) Have reintroduced the Great Lakes Fish and Wildlife Restoration Act last month provided essential resources to conserve and restore populations of fish and wildlife in the Great Lakes.
Since 1998, this program has supported anglers across the Great Lakes with projects such as wetland restoration and spawning lake trout detection in the wild.
This legislation would provide assistance to Great Lakes fisheries and wildlife agencies to encourage the conservation, restoration and management of fish and wildlife resources and their habitats by re-authorizing $ 6 million per year until 2027 for implement USFWS projects and activities of regional significance to the Great Lakes.
The Great Lakes Fish and Wildlife Restoration Act has been approved by Alliance for the Great Lakes, Ducks Unlimited, Great Lakes Fishery Commission, Great Lakes Commission, Pheasants Forever / Quail Forever, and The Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition.
MNR Bear Committee
I listened to the MNR Bear Advisory Committee meeting via Zoom on December 1, listening for over four hours to a diverse group of stakeholders discussing nuisance bear issues, research, regulations and quotas.
After much discussion, here is what they decided for a proposed quota for 2022 (target number of bears caught) versus total permits (based on past success rates): Zone A, quota of 1,075 ( 1,805 permits); Zone B, 800 (1,430); Zone C, 600 (3000); Zone D, 1800 (3680); Zone E, 200 (2000); and Zone F, 25 (250).
This fall, in the first year of the new management zones, the success rates by zone were A, 59.5%; B, 56%; C, 16.1%; D, 48.9%; E, 6.2%; F, 8.3%. It took a minimum of nine points of preference to draw a label in area A, 11 points in B, 2 in C, 2 in D (compared to 5 in 2020 in the old D), 1 in E and 1 in F .
As noted above, the deadline to apply for 2022 black bear permits or preference points is Friday, December 10 at 11:59 p.m. (same as spring permits for wild turkeys). View the new area map and learn more about black bear management in Wisconsin at https://dnr.wisconsin.gov/topic/hunt/bear.
Weekly water levels
As of December 3, Lake Michigan had fallen four inches over the past month and 18 inches over the past year, but was still 14 inches above December’s centennial average. Levels were 21 inches below the all-time monthly high set in 1986 and 44 inches above the all-time low set in 2012. The lake is expected to drop three inches in early January. .