DNR adjusts Leech Lake walleye regulations

BEMIDJI—Leech Lake anglers will be able to keep a wider size range of walleye starting on the 2019 fishing opener, officials announced Monday.

"Walleye abundance in Leech Lake is currently at a point that we can provide anglers additional harvest opportunity beginning in May," said Doug Schultz, Walker area fisheries supervisor with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, in a press release.

"We got here through protective fishing regulations and consistently good year classes over the past 10 years."

The new regulations, which will take effect Saturday, May 11, will remove the 20- to 26-inch protected slot and replace it with a regulation similar to the statewide regulation, but with a four-fish walleye limit, only one of which can be over 20 inches.

Anglers on Leech Lake currently can keep four fish, but must immediately release any walleye that are within a 20- to 26-inch protected slot limit. Only one fish over 26 inches is allowed in possession. The four-fish walleye possession limit on Leech Lake has been in effect since 2005.

Adaptive management on Leech Lake

Schultz said each year on Leech Lake, the DNR evaluates the success of current regulations, and looks at fish population data and angler surveys. 

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