Spirit Lake in Iowa is the home of the DNR’s most well known and revered muskellunge. This big girl has been around the block a few times!
On April 9, 2016 at 1 in the morning Iowa DNR crews were netting Spirit Lake when a familiar face showed herself in their gillnets. These same crews were netting fish to take eggs for the broodstocking efforts of statewide fish hatcheries.
The female muskellunge that can be seen in the video has been caught seven times since she was first stocked as a 17-inch-long two-year-old in 1999! How do they know? Read on!
This little girl has reached the ripe old age of 19 years and looks like she’ll keep swimming for a long time!
This same fish was put on display at the Iowa State Fair in 2002 and since all the netted muskies are fitted with a Passive Integrated Transponder, or PIT tag the DNR can track and positively identify the same fish for life.
Congratulations and big thanks to the Iowa DNR for taking such good care of this beautiful fish and especially for sharing their unique video!