Starting Jan. 1, all bass and walleye fishing tournaments, as well as competitive fishing events targeting muskellunge, must be registered in the DNR's Michigan Fishing Tournament Information System, available online. These events must report their results, too.
The inclusion of walleye and muskie adds to the statewide registration and reporting requirements for bass fishing tournaments that have been in place since 2016.
Tournament and event directors are required to register and report using the Fishing Tournament Information System. The DNR has worked the last 10 months to overhaul the system in order to accommodate the new requirements. That system now is operational and currently accepting 2019 registrations.
“This is an important step in gaining a better understanding of what competitive walleye and muskellunge fishing means to angling, conservation and Michigan’s economy,” said Tom Goniea, a fisheries biologist and the DNR’s tournament fishing specialist. “To date, the Fishing Tournament Information System has been a tremendous success, receiving more than 2,000 bass tournament registrations and reports. We expect a smooth transition to include a couple hundred annual walleye and muskellunge events.”
For more information, including definitions explaining the difference between a fishing tournament and a competitive fishing event, visit the system site at michigan.gov/fishingtournaments. Questions? Contact Tom Goneia at 517-284-5830.
The Polar Bear Circuit held its final event of the year at Duke’s Bridge last Sunday where Jeremy Bunnell and Lee Duracz took home first place, and over $400, with their five largest bass weighing in at 13.48 pounds.
The weather could not have been much better for late-November and that was a big reason this event drew 16 teams. Duke’s Bridge did not disappoint in regards to the fishing either. Not only were the bass results very favorable, but there were very large fish of other species caught as well.
The Polar Bear Circuit held its third open event of the year Nov. 17 at Lake Maxinkuckee in Culver, Ind. where Tom Noe and John Gipson took home the top honors, along with over $200, for their efforts that day.
The conditions were a bit dreary for the event, but considering the typical weather patterns in Michiana in late fall, the participants couldn’t have asked for a much better day to fish. The bass seemed to agree as well and were definitely biting, as almost every team brought a limit in to the scales.
Noe and Gipson not only took home first place with an outstanding bag weighing in 14.74 pounds, but they also capture the Big Bass of the day that weighed 3.76 pounds.