DC Outdoors/ Program Specialist Allen Blizel

This week on Door County Outdoors, we had a conversation about commercial and charter fishing with Program Specialist Allen Blizel from the DNR office in Sturgeon Bay. In the last 25 years, the number of commercial fishing licenses have diminished from 150 to currently 56 boats on Lake Michigan. Blizel says that licensed commercial fisherman had a good year in 2013…[audio:http://wdor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/hermie1.mp3|titles=Allen Blizel- 2013 season report]There are 10 licensed boats on Lake Superior and they mostly fish for herring, whitefish and lake trout.  Blizel also said that he is in charge of the allocated quota system for commercial fishing in Wisconsin. And while everyone was not on the same page when the system first went into effect, fisherman have learned that it is an excellent formula…[audio:http://wdor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/hermie2.mp3|titles=Allen Blizel- Allocated Quota System]We also talked about charter fishing is Wisconsin. And while he said it’s hard to get a firm grasp on a specific dollar number, charter fishing is more than a million dollar industry in the state with 317 charter boats on Lake Michigan and another 32 on Lake Superior. Blizel reported the numbers reported by captains statewide…[audio:http://wdor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/hermie3.mp3|titles=Allen Blizel- numbers of fish caught on charter boats]The local numbers have Algoma/Kewaunee ports reporting nearly 20,000 fish in just over 88,000 angler hours while the Sturgeon Bay/Washington Island numbers show over 9,000 fish in 34,000 angler hours. Those numbers represent fish caught on a licensed charter boat. And a quick reminder that the DNR will have an informational meeting to discuss the salmon and trout fishery on Lake Michigan as it relates to the charter fishing industry on Thursday, April 10th at Crossroads at Big Creek in Sturgeon Bay. And we can hear our full interview with Allen Blizel from the Wisconsin DNR by clicking Door County Fish Report on this website.

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