MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) today announced the early catch-and-release season for bass will expire on April 1, 2022, for the Washington Island complex in Door County, including waters within a quarter-mile of Washington, Detroit, Plum, Pilot, Hog and Rock islands.

On April 1, 2022, anglers are not allowed to intentionally catch-and-release bass in the Washington Island complex. Removing the catch-and-release season will protect bass in the Washington Island complex’s cooler waters throughout most of their spawning period.

The bass season for these waters will re-open on July 1, 2022.

“The previous traditional closed season to protect spawning bass has been well-accepted by area anglers,” said Scott Hansen, DNR Fisheries Biologist.  “Because data indicate that smallmouth bass in this area are also genetically distinct, the closed season may also have contributed to the stability and genetic diversity of the Green Bay smallmouth bass population.”

On July 1, 2022, bass fishing will open as usual for waters of the Washington Island complex under the existing regulations of a 12-inch minimum length limit and a daily bag limit of five largemouth and smallmouth bass in total.

Catch-and-release fishing for bass is allowed year-round on most waters of the state, and allows anglers to fish for bass during times of the year when bass cannot be kept as part of the angler’s daily bag limit.

More information about Wisconsin fishing regulations is available on the DNR website here.

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