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By Louie Stout

Gov. Whitmer’s Fishing Ban Makes No Sense

Ford Wolkins turned five this week. That’s him posing with a fish with his dad Floyd, who is laid off due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Like most five year olds, he doesn’t completely understand all of this fuss about the virus, but he’s loved having his dad home because they can fish together a lot.

Well, that is, until last week.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer put an end to that when she announced she was prohibiting fishing from motorboats. Oh, you can go fishing, but only from a canoe, kayak or rowboat.

The Wolkins, who live in Union, Mich., fish from a 16-foot Sylvan fishing boat that is a lot safer and much easier to maneuver on Michiana waters.

Like most Michiana anglers, Floyd fished alone or with his son. Prior to last weekend, he and others could escape the negative news and crisis facing America by spending time on the water.

With family or simply by fishing alone.

By Louie Stout

Indiana Researching Pike Lakes

DNR employees Aaron Voirol (left) and Zach Platt hold a giant pike they captured during a pike survey earlier this spring on Center Lake in Kosciusko County. The fish weighed 24 pounds and was released back into the lake. (DNR Photo)>/strong>

Northern pike. You either love ‘em or hate them.

Well, hate may be a strong word.

Let’s put it this way, pike have a knack for knowing when you have a favorite or very expensive lure tied on.

When they bite that lure with their razor sharp teeth, there’s a 50/50 chance you’re going to lose that fish – and the lure – unless you’re fishing with a steel leader.

On the other hand, battling a hefty pike can be a lot of fun. That’s why some people love fishing for them. And if you have mastered filleting out the Y-bones from the flesh, they can be pretty tasty.

Michiana has a lot of pike lakes. Seems like Michigan waters tend to have more, but that’s just my unscientific observation. Some of the better Hoosier lakes lie in northeast and northwest Indiana.

The Indiana DNR is trying to get a handle on the quantity and quality of pike within the lakes it manages.

By Louie Stout

DNR Won’t Be Taking Muskie, Walleye Eggs This Year

If these were normal times, you’d see DNR workers manning nets this week for adult muskies at Lake Webster.

But the times they are a changin’.

There will be no muskie collection or egg taking this year due to stay-at-home orders and the Covid-19 crisis.

In addition, Indiana will not be capturing adult walleyes at Brookville Reservoir to collect eggs for near-future stockings.

Northern Fisheries Supervisor Jeremy Price said it was a tough decision to make. The projects require a process in which staffers would be working in close quarters and confined spaces. Biologists would be working shoulder to shoulder in handling nets and fish and be working in a confined area while stripping eggs from adult fish.

“We brainstormed ways to work around it but it just isn’t something we could do without compromising the staff,” he said. “We made a tough call but have to live with it.”

By Louie Stout

Want more reasons to avoid group gatherings at boat launches?

South Carolina’s Governor closed public access to state boat ramps and beaches on lakes, rivers and waterways.

Gov. Henry McMaster said the closure was due to “behavior observed this past weekend by the Department of Natural Resources and SLED (South Carolina Law Enforcement Division). This is unfortunate for those who chose to responsibly follow the instructions of our public health officials, but it is necessary action to prevent the spread of this dangerous virus.”

It is Michiana Outdoors News hope that anyone planning fishing contests – private, public, small or large - would reconsider. Such actions could jeopardize all of our remaining fishing rights during this crisis.