: New Minnesota Regulation on Sorting/Culling.


John in Mn
05-13-2004, 04:05 PM
The new rule states: (Page 14, 2004 regs)

“Once a limit of fish has been reduced to possession, no culling or live well sorting of that species is allowed”

Ok, so I’ll assume that I can sort and cull up to the point where I place that last fish in the well. What a stupid law! The DNR already contends that anglers rarely ever get a limit, so what’s the point?

For the record, I think sorting and culling is unsportsmanlike and should be banned outright! What do you think?

bigfish1965
05-13-2004, 05:30 PM
Culling has been illegal in Ontario for a long time. Smash a fish around in the livewell for an hour or more then let him go....not smart.

guideman
05-13-2004, 07:26 PM
The new law doesn't mean that at all. What it means is that once you put a fish in the livewell, it's yours. It doesn't mean you can cull until you have your limit and it's meant to stop people from releasing dead or dying fish.

Wisconsin has had this law for years and I totally agree with the DNR for adding it to our regulations.

BlackSilver
05-13-2004, 08:12 PM
As far as I'm concerned, if you put it in the livewell, then you own it.

Walk softly and carry a big fish.

Hans/MN

REW
05-13-2004, 09:38 PM
This is not a new Law.
It is nice that you are reading the laws.
This law has been in existence for a long time.
Essentially, it has always meant the same thing. Once you have a fish in your posession - i.e. in your livewell and off the hook, the fish is yours, and may not be put back in the water.

That is why, for years; I have had a problem with tournaments, which seem to get away with the policy of letting their fishermen, put a fish in the livewell, and if they don't like its size later- return it to the water- in favor of a different fish. This is a complete violation of the current MN law.

The entire theory of catch and release is to release a fish in such a conditon that it is likely to survive. The best way to do that is to never put a hand on the fish. Get the fish beside the boat, and reach over, and unhook it with a pair of pliars and never put a hand on the fish. No protective slime taken off the fish, no damage to its scales, and no damage to the fish, due to improper handling.

A very common sense law, and very easy to follow. When you bring the fish to the side of the boat - make the decision to keep or let go, and stick with it.

Take care
REW

Alumacraft Owner
05-13-2004, 11:56 PM
ETT,

"Once you have a fish in your posession - i.e. in your livewell and off the hook, the fish is yours, and may not be put back in the water."

We have this law in out state too (NE). But, yet they are released from livewells during catch and release tournaments. I'm having a hard time interpreting the intent of the law, but yet I still promote catch and release during walleye tourneys.

Take care,

AO

Huskie
05-14-2004, 07:34 AM
I agree that culling decreases mortality and the law is in the best interests of preserving the fishery.

One question though---as the law is written, if an angler initially begins fishing and kkeps one or two fish. Later, he decides to not keep the fish and wishes to return them to the water. AS the law reads, he cannot. So fish that might have had a chance to survive (although one could argue those fish have a very compromised chance of survival after release) now are desined to be removed from the water ecosystem.

Seems like the law, although well intentioned, does not allow for a situation I myself have found myself in on more than one occasion.

Huskie
05-14-2004, 07:34 AM
I agree that culling decreases mortality and the law is in the best interests of preserving the fishery.

One question though---as the law is written, if an angler initially begins fishing and kkeps one or two fish. Later, he decides to not keep the fish and wishes to return them to the water. AS the law reads, he cannot. So fish that might have had a chance to survive (although one could argue those fish have a very compromised chance of survival after release) now are desined to be removed from the water ecosystem.

Seems like the law, although well intentioned, does not allow for a situation I myself have found myself in on more than one occasion.

slimer
05-14-2004, 12:47 PM
Those fish that are released still count towards your limit for that day and towards your possesion limit for your trip. its an honesty thing.

SUPERTROLLER
05-14-2004, 01:09 PM
I think you've read it correctly. Until a limit is placed into your livewell, it sounds like you can sort thru and cull smaller fish. This works in many other States. I see no reason why it can't work equally well in Minn. You guys are smart enough to recognize when a fish is not going to be able to live if you were to release it.

Me Too
05-14-2004, 01:28 PM
"Once a LIMIT has been reduced to posession....."
I guess that learning to use the English language correctly was more important than we thought when we were in school.
If that is what it says, then, it says what it says. Just like the Constitution does, until defense attorneys read it.

:)

carrocr
05-14-2004, 02:35 PM
REW,

I know of no tournaments that let you cull when the local laws does not allow it. If a tournament does that, it should reported by anyone who hears about it.

What most tournaments do however, is let you keep your 2 man state limit for the day, but then set a number for how many your team will weigh. Say the limit per person in the state is 5, and the tournament says each team will weigh 5. In that case you can legally keep 10 fish. Once you put the 10th in the livewell you would be done for the day, and when you get to the scales you pick your best 5 to weigh.

Most tourney fisherman simply release the other 5 (if they are lucky enough to have upgraded 5 fish throughout the day). These fish still count against your daily possesion limit, but it's not like tournament fisherman are going back out that day after the weigh-in anyway.

Some tournaments do even restrict you beyond the state limit as far as what you can keep in the boat. MWC at bay city last year for example, you were allowed to keep 7, weigh your best 5. Once you had 7 in your livewell you were done for the day, even though state law would of allowed 10 in the livewell.

Thanks,
Chad Carroll

TYEEE
05-14-2004, 05:52 PM
WOW, another thread on culling!!B.A.S.S and the FLW have recently succeded in allowing culling in WI for 4 WI catch and release tournaments this year! They are the only ones allowed to do it! "Backdoor Politics" in my mind. There is another thread regarding culling and in regards to WI Bill AB623 here on WC and a few other sites, even the Wisconsin Bass federation web page itself titled AB623 (oops, I named another site...hopefully this thread won't get pulled.) Very interesting to say the least. MN has recently released an article on a study of catch and release of walleyes where it shows that about 2% do not survive and in the hottest months about 3% do not survive! This study is being done I'm sure to address the increase of tournament fishing! Culling is something many tournaments want but mainly being sought after by the bass guys as bass are more agile than a walleye. It's nice to see that there are laws to prevent culling but it would be nicer to see them enforced!
Good Luck
Tyee

Tim S
05-15-2004, 09:49 AM
Good point. If someone is culling to upgrade the size i disagree. If I had a couple of keepers in the well that were in great shape and then caught a bleeder it would make sense to me to let a healthy fish go back. I have witnessed people upgrade a fish for 2 tenths and the released fish didn't have much chance as it was caught really deep. This makes me cringe.

On tournaments, I feel they promote fishing heavily and do a very respectable job of it most of the time. We would be light years behind if there was no tournament fishing.

Question
05-15-2004, 11:10 AM
Did that 2-3% mortality in the study refer to culled, or simply released fish. There are so many variables involved concerning a culled fish.
Thanks in advance.

John in Mn
05-17-2004, 12:33 PM
REW,

You wrote:

"This is not a new Law.
It is nice that you are reading the laws.
This law has been in existence for a long time. "

That is not correct. It is NEW for inland lakes. See page 5 and page 14 of the 2004 regs. It is clearly listed as a new regulation. A similar reg has been in effect for border waters for years however.

I just got off the phone with the DNR. It means what is says. You can cull until you limit out. I still say it's a stupid law and agree that if you put it in the box, you should harvest that fish.

Eyez
05-17-2004, 02:04 PM
I agree, that regulation is stupid. It does nothing at all.


In other states, the basic meaning of the law is that you can only reduce x number of fish to posession per day. What you do with them is up to you. Putting a fish in a livewell or on a stringer is reducing it to posession. Therefore, if I go fishing and I catch 2 fish and do not want to take them home after the end of the day, I can release them, but if I go back out later that day, I already have 2 fish towards my daily limit. Your daily limit isn't necessarily how many fish you take home with you, it's how many fish you reduce to posession.

In that way, in a tournament I and my partner can catch and place in the livewell 8 fish. 5 are weighed and put back in the lake. We release the other 3 because we don't want to keep them. We have not broken any law, but we have reached our daily limit.


Eyez

Bottom Feeder
05-17-2004, 03:07 PM
What is the difference if you let it bounce around in your livewell for awhile and release it? That is exactly what live release tourneys are about! If tournament fisherman can do it, then why can't the average fisherman do the same thing?

Eyez
05-17-2004, 03:36 PM
I'm not sure what you're getting at, but nobody is preventing you from putting a legal fish in your livewell and then releasing them, just as long as those are the only fish you put in your livewell, and you aren't culling. Perhaps you misunderstood what I said, but we only put a legal limit in the livewell, total. 8 individual fish, not 8 at a time, or whatever you might think. Just because it's a tournament does not mean it's exempt from state law, we follow the same rules everyone else does. Except in the case of those bass tournaments, which I don't care for in the least.


Eyez

REW
05-17-2004, 07:55 PM
I stand corrected.
Thanks for the update.
Take care
REW

Me Too
05-18-2004, 02:21 PM
I think it does something. It cleans up the language.
There is no question what your "legal status" is if you have a limit in the livewell and continue to fish. You are clearly illegal, even if you have no intention of keeping any more.

Eyez
05-18-2004, 02:29 PM
It doesn't do that at all. It just says you can't put anymore in the livewell, not that you have to stop fishing.


Eyez

Me Too
05-18-2004, 04:04 PM
You can do whatever you want but, personally, I wouldn't continue to fish at that point. As soon as you catch another, you are over the limit when it comes into your net, hands, or boat, until you release it. Although a temporary situation, it is an illegal one.
You need to stop one fish short of the limit if you continue to fish. Technically, you can cull until you have the legal limit, but no more, thereafter.
If the limit is 6 and you have 5 in your livewell, you can continue to fish and continue to cull. If you have 6 in the livewell you may no longer cull, nor catch anymore.

SUPERTROLLER
05-18-2004, 08:46 PM
You don't have to stop fishing. You can't help it if a walleye bites your lure now that you've switched over and you're crappie fishing. As long as you don't cull the fish you have already in the box, You're still legal. It's a pretty simple rule to understand.

wow
05-18-2004, 09:04 PM
Once you have a limit of fish in the boat YOUR done! Crappie are not caught on a lindy rig in 25' of water with a leech. You can do that junk in your state we play it right and straight hear in MN which this rule is what we are talking about.

In MN you have always been allowed to cull,but when you have your limit of your done!

SUPERTROLLER
05-19-2004, 02:21 PM
You could be right on this point. I've never read your rule book so I'm not sure what it says about fishing AFTER you have a limit of a certain species in your livewell. I still think though that if it does not specifically say, in some other section of the rules, that you are NOT allowed to catch and release once you have reached that limit, then by what we have seen so far, you are still able to fish as long as it remains catch and release and you do NOT cull any fish that you had kept once you reached your limit.

If it says you may not fish afterwards and continue to catch and release, then of course you would be obligated to only catch other species. Please be sure to post a notice with all of the walleye in the lake that they are not allowed to bite your hook. What happens when you put a slip bobber out and are trying for perch or crappies and then a walleye hammers your offering? Are you now a violater? I think not. You can't help what hits your lures alot of the time or we would never catch catfish and sheephhead.

Eyez
05-19-2004, 03:55 PM
In South Dakota, a fish does not count towards your limit until you reduce it to posession. Reeling it in and holding it in your hand is not posession, according to the law. If it were, you'd only be able to catch your legal limit of fish in a day, since you'd hit your limit as soon as you'd handled 4 fish (assuming the limit is 4), since culling any fish is illegal here.

Also, I just read the entire MN fishing regulation handbook, and I find nothing to indicate that you must stop fishing once you have a limit in posession. Just that you can't cull anything once you have a limit in posession. Go ahead, feel high and mighty, but don't accuse the rest of us of breaking laws or being unethical if you don't even know the rules in your own state.

And for the record, there is nothing in the SD rulebook that states you must stop fishing when you have a limit of any species in your boat.


Eyez

Xplorer1
05-19-2004, 04:05 PM
Wow:
i just reread the MN regs (yup i'm from NE MN) and there is not any language that can be interpreted as you having to stop fishing for a species once you have possessed your limit. You may not "posess" any more, but nothing says that you cannot catch/immediatly release another fish. Read pages 14/15 again and there is not a word about fishing for a species after a possession limit is reached (only during a closed season).
The limit on the river i mainly fish is 2, usually reached in about 10 minutes this time of year. Been stopped many times with 2 in the well (length checked by DNR/Coast guard) and still fishing, and never a word from the officers.
You may impose those resrictions on yourself if you want, but you cant represent those as law according to the verbage in the 04-05 MN regs. Just to make sure, i will ask the next warden i get checked by out on the river (maybe tonight?).
Xplorer