Chicago Sun-Times
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Fox muskies for Fishes of the Week

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A pair of mid-winter muskies make it Fishes of the Week.

fotw3-04-09billys musky

Billy Loftus of Oswego caught and released his 40-incher on Feb. 18.


Victor Elarde sent this one of Bob Steflin, who caught his 43-incher on Feb. 15 near the Montgomery dam.

FOTW tops the Midwest Fishing Report in the Sun-Times each Wednesday. The extended online version appears here, usually by midnight Tuesday.

First Loftus:

``Caught and released this 40in musky out of the fox river today (2/18/2009) using a storm kickin minnow.''

Then Elarde's tale:

``A friend of mine and I went fishing in the Aurora area on 02/15/09. I thought this might be worth mentioning in your column. A young man by the name of Bob Steflin hooked a big one.

He was fishing at the Montgomery dam in aurora with a medium action rod and a 3 1/2 in. Walleye marked rapala and 8 lb test line.

He hooked and landed a muskey. This fish weighed 23 1/2 lbs, 43 inches long and 22 in girth. He fought this big boy for almost a half hour, and was successfully netted. It was possibly the fish of his life and I wanted to share it with you and hopefully your readers.''

Fish of a lifetime trumps even FOTW.

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Way to promote the fishery on the Fox... constantly writting articles with pictures of people killing these rare fish. I understand its quite possibly his fish of a lifetime, but publishing this stuff only sets the wrong tone for others. Well he did fight it for a half an hour so maybe it died anyways, but what purpose does this article serve? Its not educational and its telling people its okay to harvest these fish one after another (from other catch and keep pictures from the past).

Please do us a favor and use your exposure to help raise the fox river muskie size limit to 48" like it is in a lot of our lakes.

Victor and Bob, Great Fish! How about practicing catch and release next time. Just a thought

You gotta love it when someone comes on to criticize another, but can't sign a real name to their comment. Years ago Bob Rung mentioned to me that they were finding quite a few muskie in the river, this based on shocking surveys. Unless things have changed, FRM needs to make a few phone calls before making a rare fish observation. I have seen these rare fish in virtually every place on the Fox that I've fished. Areas that the muskie hunters don't go to because it's not a high percentage area, some place where they're likely to hook into one. Nice thing about where I go, I never see anyone else fishing. I think the population is safe, just not where the muskie hunters like to go. Hopefully he ate that fish rather than hung it on his wall. They are good eating.

Like like stated above "Great fish", however it is one of many that are not going to be there anymore. Most of these fish are caught by people not even fishing for them! This happens all the time with what ever species you are fishing for, however the ones who are keeping these fish are the ones that get lucky and hook into one of these fish. Ones using a shad rap for example. Most of the time they snag em! Not only does the size limit need to change to 48" but there needs to be more signs posted to let people know what the size limit is. All you see is signs with a small mouth stating when you can and can not keep them, and at what size.
The tiger muskie or hybrid musky like the one caught above is a fish that was stocked somewhere and made its way into the river. They do not reproduce!! The musky is the only one that can reproduce and how can they when people are keeping these fish that are rare to come by? This may be a fish of a "lifetime" there are a lot bigger ones out there. Practice CPR (catch photo and release) next time and get a replica made.

That is a great fish! However, I thought the size limit of 48 that is on the Chain also includes the Fox River?

I checked the 2009 digest, and the limit there is 36. The 48 inch size limit ends at the Algonquin dam. We need a standard size limit for musky on all bodies of water in Illinois!

ken g is an idiot

agreed. Ken Gortowski is an id

you guys obviously are idiots and if he wants to keep the fish let who cares and its not a tiger musky retard its a barred musky your a dumb [word edited]

I was just checking the good old internet to see others who have fished the fox and have been successful, being a long time Musky fisherman myself. It is sad to see a nice fish being killed, but from what I know about catching pike and musky they often DIE from the fight. Most people throw these fish back without properly recovering them and they end up sinking to the bottom. I have gone out and fished the river near Montgomery about 10 times, no musky... ok no biggy keep trying. One fish is not going to kill the population. It sounds like that one was going to die anyhow if he released it. Good catch, sometimes they die....

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This page contains a single entry by Dale Bowman published on March 3, 2009 10:01 PM.

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