The Natural Resources Commission will conduct two public hearings on proposed changes to the black bass fishing rule, one on Oct. 11 in Spencer, the other on Oct. 17 in Peru. The term “black bass” refers to smallmouth bass, largemouth bass and spotted bass.
The DNR has proposed changes that will replace the minimum size limit of 12 inches for black bass taken from rivers or streams with a requirement that black bass taken from rivers and streams must be less than 12 inches long or more than 15 inches long, with not more than two being greater than 15 inches long. The bag limit of five in aggregate per day will remain the same.
The DNR believes that this proposed slot limit will afford increased protection, particularly for smallmouth bass populations, and may increase the quality of smallmouth bass fishing opportunities in certain streams. Allowing some harvest of bass less than 12 inches is aimed at preventing “stockpiling” of small bass, and the resulting slow growth that occurs. It would also allow the take of spotted bass, which are plentiful in some streams, compete directly with smallmouth bass, and seldom grow larger than 12 inches.
The proposed rule language can be found at: http://www.in.gov/nrc/files/smallmouth_bass_10154d.pdf
Individuals can provide comments at one of the public hearings scheduled as follows:
Tuesday, October 11
Canyon Inn, Oak Room
McCormick’s Creek State Park
Spencer, IN 47460
6 p.m. (EDT)
Monday, October 17
Miami County Fairgrounds
1029 W. 200 N.
Peru, IN 46970
6 p.m. (EDT)
Submit comments regarding these proposed changes to the NRC at: http://www.in.gov/nrc/2377.htm and click on "Comment on Proposed Rule" next to the “Smallmouth Bass (Black Bass) Amendments.” The deadline for submitting comments is Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2011.
Comments can also be mailed to:
Natural Resources Commission
Indiana Government Center North
100 North Senate Ave., Room N501
Indianapolis, IN 46204
All comments sent to the NRC regarding these proposed rule changes will be provided to its members and DNR staff and will be publicly disclosed and searchable on the Internet and in a paper docket as part of the final report.