DNR to discuss options for bigger panfish in LF area lakes

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) Little Falls fisheries office will host a public meeting to discuss options for producing larger panfish in area lakes at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014, at Long Prairie City Hall, 615 Lake St. S., Long Prairie.

DNR fisheries staff have collected extensive data on local panfish populations since 1999. Several lakes have been identified that show potential to produce a greater number of larger sunfish if harvest levels are reduced. An angler survey conducted by mail last winter in the Little Falls area indicated that a reduction of the sunfish bag limit to 10 fish was the most acceptable approach to improving catch size.

Because past research indicates that a 10-fish bag limit can produce better sunfish quality, the DNR would like to evaluate public acceptance of such a limit on three to six lakes in Morrison and Todd counties. Lakes under consideration include: Buck, Green Prairie Fish, Lady, Lily, Little Swan, Long (Higgins), Maple, Mary and Moose. The DNR also is considering increasing the bag limit for crappie on Mill and Latimer lakes in Todd County to help manage abundant and slow growing populations there.

The January meeting will include an informational presentation and opportunity for discussion and public input. Questions or comments can be directed to: DNR Little Falls area fisheries manager Eric Altena, 16543 Haven Road, Little Falls, MN 56345, (320) 616-2450, ext. 225, eric.altena@state.mn.us.

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