Winnebago clarity worst for spearers since 2006

Light snow, accumulating to several inches, fell across the southern portion of the state last week, with up to 6 inches in other areas farther north.

That means a host of properties once again have more than a half a foot of usable snow, leading to ski grooming on many park and forest properties and even some new fat bike trail grooming at the Brule River State Forest.

Snowmobile trails are now open in almost 40 counties across the northern half of the state on the Wisconsin Department of Tourism’s Snow Conditions Report.

With good snow in the north, ski trails are in excellent condition on many properties, like these at Pattison State Park.

Anglers report catching a few smaller northern at the Peshtigo Harbor and Little River anglers are reporting catching good numbers of whitefish now that the cracks have frozen up again.

Anglers out at the Oconto breakwater have reported catching good numbers of larger whitefish with more than a few limits being caught.

Anglers fishing the Fox River at Voyageurs Park are reporting catching good numbers of walleyes and the occasional whitefish.

Anglers off Door County reported success early in the week, with some catching limits of whitefish.

Walleye fishing on Lake Puckaway has been good.

Ice fishermen fishing in the Mckinley Marina or the Summerfest lagoon within Lake Shore State Park in Milwaukee were finding good ice conditions ranging from 10- 15 inches.

Anglers putting in the time are having success catching a few browns and steelhead early or late in the day.

Sturgeon Spearing on the Lake Winnebago System is starting so there has been a lot of interest in water clarity conditions on Lake Winnebago recently.

DNR fisheries technicians checked water clarity on Lake Winnebago Feb. 5 and then at a couple of spots on Lake Poygan Feb. 6.

In early January water clarity averaged 9 feet on Lake Winnebago.

Unfortunately, conditions have worsened quite a bit since then.

Clarity on Lake Winnebago ranged from 3-9 feet with an average of 6.5 feet of visibility.

Looking back through past years of data, the current 6.5 reading marks the worst water clarity since 2006.

Clarity on the Upriver Lakes seems to be quite good.

Despite the less than ideal clarity conditions, fisheries managers still anticipate a big showing of spearers taking to the ice in search of a sturgeon!

Hundreds of greater scaup have been hanging out in the open water areas along Lakeshore Park in Milwaukee, with goldeneye ducks with their bright white sides and dark black backs often seen interspersed.

All the new snow makes it a great time for tracking.

Deer and elk are browsing logged areas.

Wolves, coyote and fox are mating.

Up in the sky, ravens and eagles are actively courting and great horned owls are making their nests.

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