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Kurt Krueger

In the Outdoors

Kurt Krueger can be reached at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
or P.O. Box 1929, Eagle River, WI 54521.

North to get vote on natural resources
New Natural Resources Board member Gary Zimmer of Laona will bring a career of wildlife biology, sustainable forestry and habitat improvement expertise to the board that sets policy for the DNR.        —Photo By The Author


By Kurt Kruger

I’VE BEEN so concerned with the lack of North Woods representation on the Natural Resources Board that Friday’s announcement about the appointment of Gary Zimmer was like a prayer answered.

The scribbler had gone so far as to write a pointed column for this week’s paper on the injustice of the 18-county Northern Region not having a vote on the board. I had to scrap that version.

Governor Walker appointed Zimmer, of Laona, a regional biologist with the Ruffed Grouse Society and a former biologist with the U.S. Forest Service. He’s an expert in wildlife management, especially when it comes to habitat development.

This is great news for the North Woods, and I might

Tuesday, April 09, 2013 2:59 PM | Updated ( Tuesday, May 14, 2013 4:15 PM )
Don’t miss your chance to have a voice
Many muskie anglers who use conventional techniques are opposed to the proposal to allow motor trolling statewide.                —STAFF?PHOTO

By Kurt Krueger

IF YOU?CARE about the future of fishing, hunting and trapping regulations that are enforced by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), then you need to make time for a hearing next Monday night, April 8.

At 7 p.m. in every county in Wisconsin, the agency will conduct its annual Spring Fish and Game Rule Hearings. In this area,

Tuesday, April 02, 2013 2:15 PM
DNR not giving the whole story on bass
DNR officials who claim largemouth bass haven’t been helped by the delayed harvest season the past 20 years obviously don’t fish much. —Photo By The Author


By Kurt Krueger

THE CRAZY thing about the latest plan from the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to allow the harvest of largemouth bass in early May is that they aren’t telling the whole story.

It’s sort of like lying by omission that the department doesn’t mention one of its biggest concerns — that largemouth bass are slowly replacing walleyes in some lakes.

That is an issue a lot of anglers can

Tuesday, March 26, 2013 5:29 PM | Updated ( Tuesday, May 14, 2013 4:15 PM )
That panfish survey is mighty important
Anglers who want a voice in the future of panfish bag limits and size limits need to complete an online survey.                —Photo By The?Author

By Kurt Krueger

ANGLERS concerned about the future of panfish regulations that could include minimum size limits and reduced bag limits are being urged to fill out an online survey if they want their opinions considered.

The last of more than two dozen panfish meetings was held last week, part of a statewide process to help guide the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) in developing a management plan.

For the first time ever, the agency that has always had plans for walleye, muskie and other game fish, wants to do something similar for crappies, perch

Tuesday, March 19, 2013 5:12 PM
Crossbow plan too bold to pass the state?

By Kurt Krueger

ANYONE could use a crossbow to hunt deer under an advisory proposal being floated by the Natural Resources Board, a question that will appear on the spring fish and game hearing questionnaire in every county on Monday, April 8.

The plan is far more encompassing than a Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) proposal sportsmen and -women gave the nod to two years ago, which was to lower the legal age for crossbow use from 65 to 55 years of age.

That also was an advisory vote and it passed by 500 votes statewide. But it went nowhere, probably because the change requires legislative approval. So once again, the board is merely monitoring public opinion that could be used to craft a bill.

The first question,

Tuesday, March 12, 2013 3:51 PM
March is time for tip-downs, panfish
About the simplest form of the tip-down a person could devise is shown above. Just drill holes around the balance point of a rod and hang the rod on a nail extending from the top of a stick.             —Photo By The Author

By Kurt Krueger

HAVING bid farewell to the game-fishing season last Sunday, its time for crappies, bluegills and perch to take center stage during the sloppy meltdown of late winter.

A lot of people don’t like the transitional period and they head to warmer climates as spring arrives just two weeks from today, but others can’t wait for the day that water is running into fishing holes on their favorite lake.

There’s probably some scientific explanation

Tuesday, March 05, 2013 8:53 PM
DNR plan would kill largemouth fishery

By Kurt Krueger

AFTER almost 20 years of building a world-class bass fishery in the North Woods, the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is proposing to throw largemouth bass management under the bus.

In yet another bold blunder that is headed for a vote April 8 at spring fish and game hearings in every county, the DNR endorses moving the largemouth bass harvest season to the first Saturday in May.

The other blunder, if you haven’t yet heard, is the agency’s

Tuesday, February 26, 2013 4:59 PM
DNR sleeping on winter muskie spearing


By Kurt Krueger

THE?BLOOD pressure of many a muskie angler has heated up in recent weeks as photos surfaced on the Internet of dead muskies lined up on tables, supposedly the result of a winter spearing contest by members of Wisconsin’s Chippewa tribes.

The tribes have a right to spear muskies or any fish they can effectively take in winter, as you might know, so that isn’t the issue on the table today. The problem is, who is keeping track?

It has been years since the scribbler tackled this subject. On the last round, I learned that the federal courts determined that winter muskie spearing would be considered a low-efficiency harvest — pretty much in the same category as sport angling.

Therefore, tribal members

Tuesday, February 19, 2013 4:17 PM | Updated ( Tuesday, February 19, 2013 4:24 PM )
DNR pushing statewide motor trolling
Cruising boats and the widespread yellow planer boards used by motor trollers could become a common sight in Vilas County if the Department of Natural Resources gets its way at the spring hearings.      —STAFF PHOTO


By Kurt Krueger

VILAS County’s long-held disdain for motor trolling is being pushed aside by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), as the agency is calling for a statewide vote to legalize trolling everywhere.

The so-called experts claim in the pamphlet assembled for the spring fish and game hearings in April that trolling is allowed in many Wisconsin waters and surrounding states “with no known adverse effects.”

That’s a pretty bold statement for an agency that has been told previously about adverse social impacts involving motor trolling on small inland waters — lakes being shared by anglers, boaters, windsurfers, waterskiers and swimmers.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013 4:38 PM | Updated ( Monday, March 24, 2014 9:20 AM )
Pick a sport or two, beat the winter blues
Whether it’s fishing, snowmobiling or cross-country skiing, staying active in winter is the best way to beat cabin fever.          —Photo By The Author

By Kurt Krueger

IF?YOU?SUFFER from long-winter syndrome and the depression that comes from being locked up at home for days on end, often called cabin fever, there might be a cure.

Most people have a billion excuses for why they can’t do more in winter — some very legitimate and others without any merit at all. As with any illness, cabin fever can’t be cured unless the patient is willing.

The only way I’ve found to beat the winter blues is to stay active, and there’s plenty of easy-access winter sports to pick from. Active doesn’t mean sitting in front of a television or computer at home. Some people don’t have a choice, and that’s all the more reason to get out if you can.

If you can handle the weather,

Tuesday, February 05, 2013 6:57 PM

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