12-16-2000, 09:41 PM
I just read a post about spearing fish, being frome Ohio I really don't know anything about this sport. could anyone tell me what kind of fish you are trying to get and exactly how do you spear a fish? What is a dark house? Thanks for the info. Craig
Hi Craig welcome to MN While spearing the type of fish you are after Northern Pike not to be mistaken for the Mighty Muskie, they do look similar but are quite different. You need a spear a decoy to lure the fish in, a dark house so you can see down the hole that you chop through the ice about 24x24 inches square. You want to be in about 8-9 feet of water and it must be clear enough to see down to the bottom. If you need more help go to your local bait shop they'll help you out. Good luck bilt.
01-08-2001, 05:16 PM
I spear on Big Pine Lake and have a Blast
A dark house is exactly what it sounds like it is dark so that you can see the bottom of the lake. You usuall use about a four by five spear house you use a decoy to attract them in I make my own, in MN you can spear "rough" fish carp, dogfish sheepshead
but the main game is pike how you spear is when one comes in slow enough they usually come in at mach 4 you lower the 7 tines of the speary into the water and let it fall on top usuall behind the head the spear is latched to a 2x4 or your foot so you get it back, the best decoy is red with a white body
01-11-2001, 11:05 AM
Which Big pine lake are you refering to?
crushing egg shells and dropping them through the hole, so they cover the bottom under your hole will increase the visibility if your having problems seeing.
'go outside and play"
01-14-2001, 08:03 PM
Come to lake Winnebago on Feb 9,10 then you'll see some spearing. We have a lake sturgeon season and every year a few fish over 100lbs. are taken. This is really something to see. For many familys around the lake its a huge tradition, all the equipment has to be homemaid, because there isn't a market for it anywhere else. I've been spearing sturgeon for 15 yrs.,and my largest fish is 70 lbs. They look like submarines when they come into the 3ft.x 8ft. hole cut in the ice. If you ever get a chance to try it, go do it. It's slow action but worth the effort when it happens. I've heard it discribed like trying to shoot ducks while looking up a chimeny.
01-15-2001, 07:02 AM
Wow! Sounds very interesting. What do you use for decoys? What does one do with a 100# sturgeon after you spear em?
01-16-2001, 05:14 AM
I use wooden decoys that i make myself, Nothing to fancy. Usually I put two down the hole and like to keep one of them moving. As for the fish, You can smoke it, which is what most people do. I've made it just like walleyes befor and it was excellent. Boil it and dip in butter. I had a big fishlast year and it tasted bad. I think because it was full of gizzard shad, and was probably eating them all winter.
01-16-2001, 04:06 PM
Spearing is about as fair as shining deer.
But, it is fun to ANGLE in a dark house, so you can learn how to make a fish bite. You can watch the whole process. You will soon see how few actually bite compared to how many that come to look and sniff.
01-16-2001, 05:02 PM
It's a blast, if I had to choose to spear or ice fish It would be to spear.
01-18-2001, 09:50 AM
What is the difference in principal between spearing and snagging? How is one legal the other not? They are one in the same, taking of a fish you could not get to bite. How does one practice catch and release with a spear stuck behind a fishes head. I do not believe spearers go for a selective harvest approach either. It can not be called a sport, it is raping of the mature fish in a ecosystem. It is time for the spear to go the way of the snagging hook.
someone who spears knows what their target is and attempts to take that fish, while a snagger is randomly trying to snag a fish they think may be there. everything in the water has the potential to be snagged whether game species or protected river otter on a dive. snagging has the potential to do much more collateral damage. spearing is more like hunting than fishing, yet one still practices selective harvest.
here's an analogy: deer hunting you see a nice buck and a it's a clean shot with nothing down range, you aim and shoot. that's sound judgement and safe. now what if you thought there was a buck down in that tangle, but wern't sure and you just started shooting into the tangle hoping to get the buck. not sound judgement and surely not safe! ethically there is a difference on how the deer was taken. that's the difference between snagging and spearing.
finally, i practice catch and release with hook and line, like many folks, but i also know that catch and release still has a mortality rate. so, all anglers kill fish, whether the angler chooses to or not.
"go outside and play"
01-19-2001, 06:41 PM
All I have to say is spearing is for the indians and they should all be speared I like the saying spear a indian and save a walleye
ha ha ha
Pig Hunter: I think the correct term is harpoon. sp?
01-22-2001, 02:09 PM
I've seen plenty of guys armed with tip-ups rape a lake of mature fish too. In fact if I were a poacher, my preffered method would be to take fish by tip-ups because I believe it's possible to catch more this way. It takes alot less work and time also, so do we want the poachers to stay in a spear house on one lake in one spot all year, or do we want them to be moving around from lake to lake, taking the big fish out of all these lakes. You can ban spearing, but don't expect that these guys won't learn how to kill fish with a tip-up.
01-23-2001, 09:40 AM
Sib's right on the money with his analogy. Also the amount of time put into dark house spearing is also closer to deer hunting than angling -- Lots of hours quietly waiting in anticipation.
In regard to Catch-n-Release, when you're spearing in a dark house the decision is made before you take the fish. Zero harm done to fish you don't want to keep.
Couple other notes. The law in MN prohibits littering the bottom (egg shells decompose very slowly), and requires an open window in a house while angling.
01-23-2001, 06:06 PM
I dont spear, although Ive done it on occasion. To me it is the same as bow hunting out of a tree, your only going to take the ones you want, most that do spear are serious about this sport,the ones that break the law spearing also will break the law angling or hunting, you name it. some people just dont get it...
There is a spearing season on lake winnebago for sturgeon.
I myself speared a 65lb. fish eight years ago. You sit in an ice shack that has all the walls painted black. You are looking down a hole cut in the ice approx. 2'x 5'. A decoy personal preferance is hung in the hole to attract the fish. A five tine spear is used with a 6' handle that releases after you spear the sturgeon. Some people are lucky and get one every year or people wait 15 years. The sport has become very popular so the DNR only lets so many fish be taken. This fish takes 25yrs to spawn for the first time. They grow very slow about an inch a year . A 65" fish is probably 50yrs old. The fish has no bones cartilage like a shark. The season used to go from mid feb. to 1 mar. The last couple of years it lasts 2 days water clarity is a big factor.
You can see bottom at 20' of water calls for a short season. This years season is feb. 10,11. This is the only place in the united states that it is legal to spear the sturgeon. I hope this is what you wanted to learn about . Have fun on the water or frozen ice, fishing.
Rick the sturgeon spearer.
i just wanted to correct you on your statement that it is the only place in the u.s. you can spear sturgeon leagally. in my state of michigan you can spear sturgeon. In Mullet and Black lake there have been many 150# plus fish taken. good spearring to you.
"go outside and play"
01-27-2001, 04:29 PM
Or shining. You only shoot the ones you want.
01-28-2001, 11:21 AM
Hey, Sib A few years ago my sturgeon spearing partners and I saw a sturgeon on the news That was HUGE HUGE HUGE. I want to say it was pushing 200 lbs. but don't quote me on that. Is Sturgeon spearing as popular in Michigan as it is in WI., also do you do it and what lakes is spearing allowed? What are the dates of the season, and if you have the numbers of fish speared annually VS. the number of spearers, I would be interested in that also. I know thats a lot of info to have at your fingertips,but I really enjoy stugeon spearing. Our season starts on the tenth of Feb. Thanks for any info.
sure man send me to the fishing guide to get the answers.;-) I haven't speared in a long time, and never for sturgeon. the spearing season i'm affraid is a dying season here in mich. this year only black lake is open for sturgeon spearing. it's a lottery and the season limit is 5 kills in the entire state for the season! things have changed alot since i last checked, so mich is definetly not the place to go to spear sturgeon. last year they met the quota on the 2nd day of the season! the state record is 193#. i've fished the menominee river before for eyes and heard of some nice sturgeon coming from it. sure hope you can still spear over there in Wis for sturgeon, I hope this not a dying sport.
"go outside and play"
01-29-2001, 05:12 PM
Thanks Sib, only 5 fish in the state? Thats to bad, but if thats all the population can allow,then so be it. I also spend some time on the Menominee starting in March, and into April. Lots of walleyes. Last spring my buddy and I went In mid march for a scouting trip to see if any fish had wandered into the river yet,12 hours later and 1 bait run we had caught over 150 walleyes. Nothing big, but a couple 4 lbs. most of the fish that day were between 13-18 inches. Only 2 other boats on the whole river that day, we laughed our a#### off. I'll be running a black and red Ranger 620 with mercs on the back this year, maybe I'll see you, drift over and introduce yourself. My main engine on the boat will have a N.P.A.A. decall #538. Hope to see you.
As for our sturgeon season,we also have a harvest cap in place that alows for a 1000 + sturgeon to be speared. I don't recall the exact #'s but it lasts about 2-3 days if the water is clear. It's very popular in this area. It's a family tradition with a lot of people, plus it give me something to look forward to this time of year. January has been tough this year, ice fishing has not produced many fish for anyone on lake winnebago, so lots of frustrated and crabby fishermen around here.Good luck with your fishing season, catch one with big teeth.