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Panfish slots

7/18/21 @ 1:09 AM
Dinner plate keeper
Dinner plate keeper
USER SINCE 3/14/11

As a frequent ice fishing angler. We as sportsman better start being wise on panfish harvest. I have seen much decline in lakes that produce very well. 

Does anyone have opinions on WI going to a panfish slot size limit. Also lowering bag limits on certain waters. I have seen and fished other states that have done this change. It improves a system and its potential. 

Anyone else see lack of mature panfish in lakes?


7/21/21 @ 1:12 PM
USER SINCE 6/14/05

B-B you might want to check out what a possession limit consists of, unless you are eating fish every/every other day you might as well just keep 35 the first day, you're over anyway. 

7/21/21 @ 6:38 AM

Recomendation, 1 gill, 1 crappie, one walleye, 1 bass, etc. 

7/21/21 @ 6:07 AM
USER SINCE 3/23/20

5 a day has made a huge difference on the lake i mostly fish. Most gills are 8" -11" with a few 6 -7" here and there. The 5 a day limit has definitely increased the catch rate of big gills and good8-9" eaters. The length limit never works for panfish say the limit is gills over 8" then you have lake full of small gills. So in a week I can get 35 total is plenty. Also glad they changed the limit on the Mississippi river when it was 25 a day guys me included would be there for a week and take home 100+ plus per group is way to much imo. And yes Rockies are pretty good.

7/20/21 @ 8:59 PM
USER SINCE 8/29/06

Rockies are good out of clean water lakes. Bleeding them and putting them on ice immediately goes a long way toward making them tasty. Other than that, I fry them and eat them just like gills.

7/20/21 @ 6:44 PM
USER SINCE 11/25/07

Anyone eat rock bass? If so do you do anything different with them than what you would do with bluegills?

7/18/21 @ 9:24 PM
Dinner plate keeper
Dinner plate keeper
USER SINCE 3/14/11

Thanks Duke and others for posts. I agree with variables and some lakes. However majority of lakes can be helped if harvest was done differently. 

Duke thanks for doing your part and wife. My brother and I have tried sheepheads. It ate well, just like freshwater drum. I'm worried about future fishing is my concern. 

Things need to change quickly. Before we loose our few populations that produce.  Hard to see other states pass us by in this practice.  

7/18/21 @ 9:50 AM

Duke.   If I remember correctly it was just over 200 of those gills.  They took up a lot of room in the sack because they were frozen.      It was rough dragging those sacks back to our vehicles but it kept us warm .     CARPIO 

7/18/21 @ 8:29 AM
USER SINCE 1/22/21

I’m sure there’s lakes that have stunting problems. But every lake isn’t the same. Lots of variables. Programs should be on a lake by lake basis. 

7/18/21 @ 8:27 AM
Duke M
USER SINCE 1/12/09

Personally, I implemented size and bag limits years ago. I release gills over 9", I have a daily bag limit of 6 with a few rare exceptions. My wife and I often declare total release days. 

Being retired offers more opportunities to fish and thus I try to be understanding of the twice or three times a Winter angler who strives for a limit. Who annoys me are the guys I see out day after day after day taking home a bucket of fish. A few old characters slyly offered advice as to how to circumvent possession limits. When I ask if they have seen a Passenger Pigeon, or a Buffalo lately, I get a blank look in return. These same fellers lament the days of no bag limit of panfish on the Mississippi. Tell how it takes 400,  3/4 pound gills to fill a 100# potato sack, and complain they don't get any 10 inchers any more.

I am a proponent of responsible harvest and enjoy eating fish. I have turned my attention to more prolific and under utilized fish. I learned to properly care for white bass and find them to be delicious. My next experiments will involve sheepshead. Logically, a fish out of the same water, eating the same food sources, and properly bled, iced, and with the red meat trimmed off should be good table fare.

I am looking into other recipes beyond the old fish fry, such as tacos,, chowders, poor man's lobster, blackened, etc. I already smoke and can fish. The most delicious fish salad sandwich I have ever had is lightly smoked red horse from the canning jar, mixed with your favorite tartar sauce, on toasted marble rye and lettuce. Blows a tuna salad sandwich into the weeds.

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