FOND DU LAC — John Skahen of Chilton’s 161-pound catch will go into the books as the largest of the 2014 Sturgeon Spearing season.
The season came to a close at 1 p.m. Thursday, with 89 sturgeon speared on the final day, bringing the six-day total on Upriver Lakes and Lake Winnebago to 1,854. Sheri Rasmussen had the largest fish Thursday, at 137.2 pounds, 72.5 inches, while Robert Granger also speared a 129.2-pound, 71.8-inch sturgeon that he registered at Harrison Town Hall.
Ninety-five fish weighed more than 100 pounds, the most registered in a single season, according to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
Wisconsin DNR biologist Ryan Koenigs said the season had many record efforts, both personal and official.
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“Following my report (Wednesday) about Allan Kraemer’s 42-year wait for a fish, I received an email from another spearer who knew of someone who had waited for a long time before harvesting his first fish on Lake Winnebago,” Ryan Koenigs said. “As the story goes, Gale “Buckshot” Zietlow has been spearing for 55 years and has never harvested a fish from Lake Winnebago (he had speared two on the Upriver Lakes in that time). That all changed on Tuesday, when Gale saw a 73-pound fish swim through the hole and threw the spear.”
Registration stations on the southern ends of Lake Winnebago saw the most sturgeon traffic. Wendt’s on the Lake registered 385 fish, while Jim & Linda’s Lakeview Supper Club tallied 300 this season.
Upriver Lakes, which closed Monday, counted 341 sturgeon.
The Wisconsin DNR reported that 227 juvenile females were speared, while 805 adult females and 822 males were caught.
More on sturgeon season: More headlines and video | Browse photos from the 2014 season | Browse photos from the 2013 season | Browse photos from the 2012 season | Share your sturgeon photos | Watch cameras on the Wolf River | Watch cameras positioned in Stockbridge