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Fishing Wisconsin Sturgeon guard volunteers

The 2020 Sturgeon Guard program is canceled.

Each spring, hundreds of volunteers have an opportunity to monitor sturgeon at their spawning sites on the Wolf River, protect the fish from poaching and help educate the public about this special resource. When the sturgeon spawn along the rocky shoreline of the Wolf River, they are fairly oblivious to nearby human activity and are susceptible to illegal harvest and unintentional harassment from overly enthusiastic spectators.

sturgeon spawning

Sturgeon guards are necessary to protect these historic fish during their spawning season.

The volunteers of the “Sturgeon Guard” monitor the spawning fish throughout the spawning season, which is typically from mid- to late April.

While it is impossible to predict the exact dates that spawning will occur each year, guards are scheduled from April 15 through April 30. Spawning generally occurs over a seven to 10-day period within that time. While we do our best to get all scheduled guards out on the riverbank to see fish, invariably we must cancel some scheduled shifts if the fish are simply not active. We try in those cases to reschedule guards into an active period.

How to be a sturgeon guard volunteer

Come join the fun! Make volunteering a family outing by bringing a son or daughter your spouse or a friend. For many being a sturgeon guard volunteer has become an annual tradition.

For more information on what to expect, check out what you need to know as a sturgeon guard volunteer.

Then click the link at the top of this page to access online registration forms and information on additional ways to sign up.

Contact the contact the DNR sturgeon guard coordinator at 920-420-1140 if you need additional information.

Previous publications

Read On guard! from the February 2006 issue of the Wisconsin Natural Resources magazine.

Background information

The Sturgeon Guard program [PDF] - History of the Sturgeon Guard program

Last revised: Wednesday March 25 2020