Outdoors briefs Feb11

Sunday, February 19, 2006

New crappie regulations at DeLaney Lake

The Missouri Department of Conservation is changing crappie fishing regulations at the Robert G. Delaney Lake effective March 1.

The new regulations will limit crappie harvest to a daily limit of 15 and a 9-inch minimum length.

The current limit is 30 fish limit with no minimum length requirement.

"These new regulations will reduce harvest of smaller crappie and ultimately should result in larger crappie in the lake," said MDC fisheries biologist Paul Cieslewicz. "Similar regulations have improved crappie populations in several of Missouri's large reservoirs."

According to Cieslewicz, the Robert G. DeLaney Lake, just north of Charleston has the potential to grow large crappie. However, according to tagging studies and population surveys, anglers harvest a high percentage of 8-inch crappie. Consequently, few fish survive and grow larger.

According to population surveys, only 15 percent of the crappie in the lake are longer than 9 inches.

For more information, contact Cieslewicz at (573) 290-5730, ext. 240.

New sunfish regulations at General Watkins

The Missouri Department of Conservation is enacting new sunfish harvest regulations at the General Watkins Conservation Area effective March 1.

The regulations will set the daily limit at 10 and the minimum length limit at 8 inches.

The new regulations will be in effect on all ponds in the conservation area and will apply to all sunfish species, including redear, warmouth and green sunfish as well as bluegill.

According to MDC fisheries biologist Mike Reed, fish up to 9 inches often were collected in fisheries surveys while anglers occasionally reported 10-inch bluegill. However, over the past few years, the increasing harvest of large bluegill has resulted in a decline in the average size of fish.

"We think the new regulations will allow bluegill populations to rebound to their previous levels of producing larger fish," said Reed.

The General Watkins Conservation Area is located in Scott County near Benton. For information, call the MDC Southeast regional office at (573) 290-5730.

-- From staff reports

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: