With the new regulations on some WI lakes, does anyone feel there should be a size limit? I have my personal sizes at 7.5" for bluegills in the winter and 8" in the summer. I ask because I have seen people with buckets of bluegills around 5" then brag about how they caught their limit without any mention of the size. As for crappie and perch, I usually aim for 9" or bigger. I also know it's everyone's right to keep what they think but I personally prefer quality over quantity.
MN has regs that on certain lakes you may not keep more than 5 fish. !0-11"" bluegills are not uncommon on those lakes. Many fisherman avoid those lakes, but those are the ones that I prefer. They have a 5 fish limit for crappies on some as well. One in particular that I fish in summer coughs up 9-10" bluegills and 10-12" crappies in one spot. If I wanted to, I could take the 5+5, but I don't.
One lake in my area here has a reduced bag limit of 10 bluegills. That still isn't low enough to keep the fish hogs away. Wish they would drop it to 5 fish. That would help the lake to become a true trophy lake.
FJW, looks like a spot I have. I can see by the pics they are an identical type fish. even if you do keep them they are gross and just littered with black parasites and white grubs. I have caught many in the 10-10.5 range. Amazing little lake, but it could get raped fast if word got out. I never tell a sole about the lake, I keep it to me and the family. Catch and release only. I see people come there and catch the shallow spawners every year, but after that, not a person fishes panfish.
I can see by your pics they are probably littered with black parasites as well, esp when they have them on the fins and outside of the skin.
Ok i see so many saying a bigger size limit, But yet jump all over a person keeping a limit of smaller fish. So are the same people going to be mad and complain if the size limit is say 71/2 inches and they keep a limit every time out. Yes there is no pleasing everyone at the same time. I keep gills about 7 to 71/2 inches and have thrown back bigger. And I don't fish for them during the spawn. Same with any fishing I do, leave them alone during spawning time, that's not fishing that is catching and molesting them. I quit fishing bass tourney's because of them being held during spawning time. Ripping fish of beds is not being a big person in my book.
Yes all that is my choice and what you choose is your choice as well. If the license allows you to fish and keep them then complain to the DNR and have the rules changed. If the body of water has plenty of fish or stunted fish there may be a reason that you are allowed so may fish, hmm the science and all the testing the DNR does may have a lot to do with fish limits. And before you jump on limits and so forth, get the Data from the DNR and there research so you make your self look like you reached puberty when you want to change limits or laws.
There's a lake I fish on a regular basis, I no longer keep any of the gills I catch in this lake. It's unreal the size of these fish in this small deep lake. My friends want me to take them but I will not take anyone. I take one person to this place it will be all over.my personal best was a 12 incher last summer, yes I kept it , its at the taxidermy shop.
After reading many comments over the years I can see most of us have the same concerns, only different solutions. My main concern with more and more regulations is who is available to enforce them. Most of our wardens are kept quite busy with with other problems. I haven`t seen a warden on a lake or dock in years. At my age I`m very happy to just be able to be on the water, and try not to worry about what other people might or might not be doing. Life is to short, try to make the most of it.
I really think one of the biggest factors to consider when keeping panfish is the size of the lake.
Look at Lake Emily for example. If I remember correct, the winter of 2014-2015, that lake produced like I never seen before. Limits of crappie/gills (25 a person at the time) within a few hours and the crappies would average 10+" and the gills around 8.5-9.5".
This was my go to lake for years and during the winter, seeing 15 other guys out on the ice was a busy day. That winter of 2014-2015, word got out about the fishing and the lake looked like a city on the weekend. It literally took one winter to wipe out a 268 acre lake.
I fished this lake a lot since then with not much to show for as far as panfish go. Haven't caught a crappie out there since that winter. Haven't caught a gill out there worth keeping since that winter.
Last year they finally put a 10 fish limit for panfish and FINALLY put a slot on the pike which the lake needed really bad. I still read posts from that thread and was disappointed to see some of the gills people were keeping this past winter but it is what it is.
The bottom line is that it is up to us, as fisherman, to be responsible with our harvest choices. Just because something is legal, doesn't mean it's something you should do. I will never keep more than 10 panfish in a single outing, but that's just me and I know everyone is different. I think if everyone would just become a little more considerate of our resources, we would start seeing better results. Just my 2 cents.
I don’t know where you guys fish nor do I care. I only know that I’ve lived on Tichigan for 37 years and fished an AVERAGE of around 140 days a year! I know this is so because I chart EVERY DAY of fishing. Sometimes I only fish for an hour but I do get out. NOW. As long as I’ve fished the gill population has Not changed!!! In fact the size has increased since bass size limits increased and CPR is common. 8- 8 1/4” gills are common and there are enough 9” ers.around. Crappies are declining somewhat as is the length but not enough to complain about. Another example is DELEVAN. look how hard it gets pounded! This has been going on for 25? Years and still produces quality size and numbers of pannies. CARPIO
15 statewide I'd be all in on. The people that whine about "you don't know what i need for a fish fry" is just comical. I've seen the size of your average panfish go down in the last 15 years and zero doubt in my mind that its way down from 30 years ago. The days of the 9 inch bluegill is not as common as it once was. fishing pressure, newer technologies, social media...there aren't many bites that go unnoticed like they did back in the GOOD OLE DAYS when people actually fished rather than jumped on the internet and checked a facebook group every 4 seconds of the day.