SDWU to Hold Informational Meeting on Proposed Walleye Regulation Changes for Lake Oahe

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FORT PIERRE, S.D. – (DRG News) A meeting organized by South Dakota Walleyes Unlimited will be held this evening to give interested anglers a chance to learn more about changes being considered in regulations for walleye limits. Members of the Game, Fish and Parks Commission are expected to make a decision on the limits during a meeting November 1 and 2 in Madison. Included in the proposal is an increase in the daily bag limit to eight walleyes per day, of which only four can be 15 inches or longer. The rule allowing only one walleye over 20 inches daily would also be eliminated. The possession limit would be increased to 24 walleyes-or three times the proposed daily limit. G F & P staff recommended the changes for Lake Oahe because last year’s record water releases from Oahe Dam flushed numerous rainbow smelt out of the lake. Smelt are the main prey fish for Lake Oahe walleyes and with less to eat, the condition of the larger walleyes has declined. Bret Afdahl of SDWU says tonight’s meeting on the regulation change will be an informational gathering.

Afdahl says a similar occurrence took place about 15 years ago when too many walleyes and too few smelt resulted in skinny walleyes.

The public can submit comments on the proposed changes at the November commission meeting. Comments can also be e-mailed to wildinfo@state.sd.us or mailed to the Secretary’s Office of the Game, Fish and Parks Department in Pierre. To view the proposed changes, visit http://gfp.sd.gov/agency/commission/docs/notice.pdf. Tonight’s SD Walleyes Unlimited meeting on the changes will be held at 7:00 p.m. in the Missouri Room of the Holiday Inn Express in Fort Pierre.


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