Eliminate catch and release season
I don't have the link, but studies show that the fewer the hooks and the fewer the Barb's, the lower the mortality rates.
I mostly spin fish these days, clipping trebles to singles and pinching the Barb's regardless of the season.
Just what I do.
Changes were made to the trout fishing regulations. Such changes will remain in place, unchanged for 3 years. After 3 years, a review will take place to measure the impact of the changes that were made.
This is the process. Make a change, wait 3 years, measure impact.
I would not support any changes in trout regulations until the 3 years is complete.
Writing trout regulations on a statewide level is more complicated than it seems. Anglers provide conflicting interests and positions. Sorting them out requires time and considerable dialogue.
I do strongly suggest ideas should be voiced to delegates of the Conservation Congress. The WCC delegates are experts at listening to all sides.
I don't fly fish, just never got the hang of it, but I do love crankbaiting trout. The early season is my bread and butter because once you start seeing bugs flying around, the trout don't eat cranks anymore. I don't see alot of difference between barbless and barbed hooks. Barbed hooks are a bit more forgiving and I think barbless anglers end up horsing the fish even harder in an effort to keep the hook in. I wish there was some sort of leeway on deep hooked fish though. Hate releasing fish that are not going to make it. But I doubt the warden is going to see it that way, and if the dnr does try to enact something in order to allow those fish to be harvested it would be so misused as to be pointless. I would love to keep 2 or 3 eater trout a (early)season, since I don't usually have time during season, and the area creeks I have are not conducive to my particular presentations after about April 10th. I really like this new longer early season, I just need to remember it, saw a guy fishing for the first time a week or so back and was thinking that he was kinda early, then realized I was just very late.
Early catch and release season should be barbless only. I see You-Tubers catching too many on spinners with trebles and some trout pay the price.
They should be able to keep a few as there are only a few die-hards on the streams in the early season.
Only the die-hard trout fishermen will be out stream fishing for trout in the coldest couple months of the year. At least let them keep a couple to eat if they are able to catch some!
I appreciate the comments. Most of us who would fish the earliest parts of the season don't keep trout after the "regular opener" anyhow.
Edit for clarification.
I should say we are mostly strict catch and release types anyhow. Being able to keep a few fish before May whatever probably is no incentive what so ever.
Thanks for the consideration though
I realize this is an older thread, but I think overall it would be a bad idea for a couple of reasons. First, let's face it, a lot of people have a hard enough time following the regulations as written when it comes to trout fishing in Wisconsin, especially as it pertains to harvest. You can fish the same stream, but on one side of a road/bridge you can keep 5 fish with no size limit and on the other side keep three with a designated size limit. I don't have a problem with this, but have encountered MANY that don't look at the maps in the regulations or cannot understand what the colors mean.
Second, I think if you open a certain part of the state to harvest year-round, it will become a destination for anglers from all over to congregate and over-harvest those streams or regions. Trout are not as hearty as other fish (like bluegills, crappies and perch) and are more sensitive to over-harvest as well as environmental factors. Think of it this way, if they picked one lake in each county and allowed the harvest of game fish year-round with no closed season, how do you think the populations of bass, walleye, northern pike, etc. would be in that lake compared to other lakes in the same area?
I think a regulation change like this would almost have to be implemented state-wide or not at all. I understand closing the season in the fall to protect the adult fish during and immediately after the spawn when they are very visible and vulnerable to harvest, but I wouldn't necessarily have a problem with the harvest season opening the first week in January. Only the die-hard trout fishermen will be out stream fishing for trout in the coldest couple months of the year. At least let them keep a couple to eat if they are able to catch some! Also, harvest would be limited from January through early March due to most pools that hold the most trout being ice covered and at least partially inaccessible to fishermen. The other option would be to keep the early harvest season artificial-only (like the C&R season is currently) but allow harvest, even if it is only two fish. There is nothing that makes me as sick as hooking a 12, 13 or 14"+ trout deep and being forced to release it knowing it is going to die. I harvest very few trout annually, and basically release every fish I can, generally only keeping those that were hooked deep and will not survive if released. Those are my thoughts. Remember, you asked for them and I charged you nothing for them! Tight lines this year guys and gals!
Increasing the keep season will just increase the need for stocking. Increased put, and take is in no ones best interest.