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June 26, 2012

STURGEON BAY - Anglers now have beefed up information available to them on where the fish are biting and what's working on Lake Michigan, the state's most popular fishing destination.

A new telephone hotline with fishing reports covering northern Lake Michigan waters and Green Bay waters is now available at 920-746-2873. That hotline complements a longstanding call-in report for southern Lake Michigan waters 414-382-7920.

Trout and salmon fishing has been strong on Lake Michigan, as this Father's Day catch shows; a new hotline and updates can help steer anglers to what's biting where.

Anglers can get similar, more detailed fishing reports for the entire Lake Michigan coast delivered to their smartphones and computers by signing up to receive free Department of Natural Resources' Lake Michigan Outdoor Reports.

To sign up, enter an email address and look for "Fisheries Updates" and check that box to get a listing of DNR fisheries topics to receive updates for, including for "Lake Michigan Outdoor Report."

The reports are updated every week with information primarily from DNR creel clerks who interview willing anglers at boat landings and shore fishing areas about what the anglers caught, where and with what methods and baits. The creel clerks gather such fishing information while they are collecting information that helps DNR estimate fishing effort, catch rates and harvest rates to help manage the Lake Michigan fisheries.

Brad Eggold, fisheries supervisor for the DNR southern Lake Michigan unit, says the new northern Lake Michigan hotline, beefed up reports and new communications methods will help stakeholders get accurate and timely information on the state of the fishery in Lake Michigan.

"DNR's Lake Michigan fisheries team is committed to providing the latest fishing information to the public, which includes not only fishing reports but information on our recent surveys and assessments," Eggold says.

David Boyarski, fisheries supervisor in Sturgeon Bay, hopes the information can help reach a wider audience with information that might help them try fishing Lake Michigan for the first time or help better familiarize them with different parts of the lake to fish.

A 2006-07 statewide survey of Wisconsin anglers revealed that Lake Michigan was the most frequently visited fishing destination, and statistics from the American Sportfishing Association estimate that 235,000 anglers fish 3.7 million days every year for fish in Wisconsin's Great Lakes waters, the bulk of that spent on Lake Michigan.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Brad Eggold (414) 382-7921; David Boyarski (920) 746-2865

Last Revised: Tuesday, June 26, 2012

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