Walleye size limit to change on Mille Lacs starting next month

Anglers who head to Mille Lacs Lake for walleye will soon be able to keep fish that are an inch smaller than what is currently allowed.

According to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, the minimum length will be dropped from 21 to 20 inches starting Aug. 1.

Although the size of the walleye that can be kept will now be from 20-23 inches or greater than 28 inches, the bag limit will still be one fish — for either of those sizes.

The reason for the change? Brian Nerbonne, the central region fisheries manager for the Minnesota DNR, says the walleye catch rate has been lower for the spring and early summer.

State officials say test netting done on the lake shows a larger population of yellow perch, meaning walleye will have more fish to eat instead of taking the bait from anglers.

The agency won’t be changing regulations that are currently in place for all other fish species in the lake.

State officials are expected to announce new walleye regulations for the winter season sometime in November. The winter fishing season begins on Dec. 1.