(WFRV) – Despite warm temperatures and a relatively slow start to the sturgeon spearing season, a record-setting fish was caught on Tuesday, becoming the seventh largest caught on the Lake Winnebago system since 1941.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) shared information about the historic catch in a release on February 14.
Officials with the DNR say that James Gishkowsky speared the massive 177.3-pound, 79.9-inch female sturgeon from Lake Winnebago.
Gishkowsky’s 177-pound sturgeon was the largest caught since 2013, and the seventh largest dating back to 1941. Officials say that it was an F4 female, an F4 is a female that is full of eggs and would have spawned this year.
F4s are typically full of an additional 20-30 pounds of eggs, which is why many of the largest sturgeon recorded are F4s.
With warmer temperatures continuing, only 72 fish were harvested throughout the Lake Winnebago system on Tuesday, with 58 from Lake Winnebago and 14 from the Upriver lakes.
Upriver, there are still 3 adult females left until the 90% trigger is activated or 11 more adult females until the 100% cap is reached. If the 90% trigger is hit, there will only be one more day to spear after that. If 100% is reached, then the season will close that afternoon. But so far, harvest Upriver has been slow, and the season will be open [on Wednesday].Wisconsin DNR
More information about the Winnebago system sturgeon spearing can be found here.