Wisconsin’s frozen Lake Winnebago might be the best place in the world to spear fish for sturgeon.
The state has the highest concentration of sturgeon in the world, with an estimated 15,847 adult females and 31,748 adult males in the state’s waters, and anglers from all over the country are catching on.
Every February, approximately 10,000 anglers flock to Wisconsin to participate in the state’s short sturgeon spear fishing season. According to the Associated Press, anglers have speared 319 sturgeon on lakes in the Lake Winnebago region this season.
Special Deliver For Wisconsin Ice FishermenA Minnesota brewery attempted to launch an aerial drone beer delivery service this winter for anglers on frozen lakes in Minnesota and Wisconsin, but was grounded by the Federal Aviation Administration. Check out their video demonstration of what could have been.
A few sturgeon caught by spear fishermen this season have been monster fish. Last Sunday, angler Don Feldner speared a 148-pound sturgeon that measured in at 74.6-inches long. It was the first sturgeon Feldner had caught in 19 years, and was believed to be the record holder for this year’s season. His dad had caught a 106-pound sturgeon spear fishing the frozen Wisconsin lakes back in the 1950s.
“Back then a 106-pounder was a good-sized fish,” Feldner said. “Now I’ve got them beat by a lot. I think my dad would be proud of me.”
But the glory of holding the year’s sturgeon record was short lived. The day after Feldner caught the sturgeon, angler Brian King bagged a 155-pounder, followed by another spear fishermen who reportedly pulled in a sturgeon over 150 pounds. All three of the top Wisconsin sturgeon spear fishing catches this year have been over 6-feet long.
Wisconsin’s sturgeon spear fishing season is expected to wrap up by the end of the week. Some of the region’s spear fishermen shared their success stories with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources in this video.