2019 Alberta Fishing Regulations Update

Alberta Fishing Regulations Cover

The 2019 Fishing Regulations have been released and each year I take some time to sit down and become familiar with the changes. Last spring I read an article in a paper from Calgary claiming that fishing opportunities were improving because a few lakes in the province opened to walleye retention, what they didn’t reveal was the number of lakes closing far outweighed the number that opened. I thought this was a curious piece of journalism, so this year I decided to compare the changes of pike and walleye retention limits throughout the province. Outlined below are the changes to the regulations from the previous year:

ES1:

Picklejar Lakes: regulations now include tributaries and outlets

ES2:

Jackfish lake: now 0 limit on Pike, was 1 pike over 63 cm in 2018

Brazeau River: now catch and release downstream of the reservoir

Nordegg River: now catch and release only

ES3:

Beta Lake: now allowed 3 pike of any size; limit was 3 over 63 cm in 2018

Lodgepole Pond: added to regulations, allowed to keep 2 trout

Long Lake: now allowed to keep 1 walleye of any size; was 0 limit in 2018

Wolf Lake: now allowed to keep 1 walleye of any size; was 0 limit in 2018

Athabasca River: now allowed 5 whitefish over 30 cm and 2 brook trout of any size at specific times of the year; limit was 0 for each in 2018

Jarvis Creek: now 0 limit on pike; pike were not likely to be found in 2018

ES4:

Meekwap Lake: now 1 pike over 63 cm; was 3 over 63 cm in 2018

Snipe Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 1 under 75 cm in 2018

Sturgeon Lake: now 1 walleye over 50 cm; was 1 over 43 cm in 2018

PP1:

No changes to regulations in PP1 from 2018

PP2:

Battle Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 3 over 63 cm in 2018

Berry Creek Reservoir: now 0 limit on walleye, 1 pike over 63 cm; was 3 walleye over 50 cm and 0 pike in 2018

Forestburg Reservoir: now 0 limit on pike; was 3 over 63 cm in 2018

Isle Lake: now 1 pike over 63 cm; was 0 limit in 2018

NB1:

All lakes within Lakeland Provincial Park: now 0 limit on pike; was 1 over 63 cm in 2018

Alexander Hamilton Pond: added to regulations

Bluet Lake: now 1 pike over 70cm; was 1 over 63 cm in 2018

Claude Lake: now 1 walleye of any size; was 0 limit in 2018

Elinor Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 1 over 63 cm in 2018

Fork Lake: now 0 limit on pike: was 1 under 63 cm or over 100 cm in 2018

Francis Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 3 over 63 cm in 2018

Heart Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 3 over 63 cm in 2018

Ironwood Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 1 over 63 cm in 2018

Lac La Biche: now 0 limit on pike; was 1 over 75 cm in 2018

Logan Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 3 over 63 cm in 2018

Piche Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 3 over 63 cm in 2018

Pinehurst Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 1 over 63 cm in 2018

Whitefish Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 1 over 63 cm in 2018

NB2:

Lac La Nonne: now 1 pike over 63 cm; was 0 limit in 2018

Long Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 2 over 63 cm in 2018

Long Island Lake: now 1 pike over 63 cm; was 0 limit in 2018

Mitsue Lake: added to regulations

Narrow Lake: now 0 limit on pike; was 2 over 63 cm in 2018

Lesser Slave River: limits remain the same but now open from June 1st to October 31; was open from June 1st to March 31st

NB3:

Equisteum Lake: now 0 limit on walleye and pike; was 3 walleye over 50 cm and 3 pike over 63 cm in 2018

Goodfish Lake: now 0 limit on walleye and pike; was 3 walleye over 50 cm and 3 pike over 63 cm in 2018

Hutch Lake: now 1 walleye over 50 cm and 1 pike over 63 cm; was 0 limit on walleye and pike in 2018

Little Sandy Lake: now 0 limit on walleye, pike and whitefish; was 3 walleye over 50 cm, 3 pike over 63 cm and 10 whitefish in 2018

Long Lake: now 0 limit on walleye and pike; was 3 walleye over 50 cm and 2 pike over 70 cm in 2018

North Wabasca Lake: now 0 limit on walleye and pike; was 2 walleye over 50 cm and 2 pike over 63 cm in 2018

Rainbow Lake: now 0 limit on walleye and pike; was 1 walleye over 50 cm and 3 pike over 55 cm in 2018

Sandy Lake: now 1 pike over 75 cm; was 3 over 63 cm in 2018

South Wabasca Lake: now 0 limit on walleye and 1 pike over 75 cm; was 2 walleye over 50 cm on certain portion of lake and 2 pike over 63 cm in 2018

Thurston Lake: now 0 limit on walleye and pike; was 3 walleye over 43 cm and 3 pike over 63 cm in 2018

Unnamed (Artisinn) Lake: added to regulations

Utikumasis Lake: now 1 walleye over 50 cm and 0 limit on pike: was 1 walleye over 43 cm and 3 pike over 63 cm in 2018

NB4:

No changes to regulations in NB4 from 2018

In Summary:

Walleye:

4 lakes opened or limits increased for walleye retention

9 lakes reduced limits to walleye retention

Northern Pike:

6 lakes opened or limits increased for northern pike retention

30 lakes reduced limits to northern pike retention

Last year we saw quite a few lakes close to walleye retention. This year wasn’t a dramatic change to walleye but the number of lakes that closed to pike retention is huge. It looks as though Fisheries is shifting their focus to pike sustainability.


Comments

  1. Peter Ewaskow

    lakes regulation on min length must be clearer .
    ex, 63 cm min . can you keep anything over that or only that length ?

    1. Chris

      You are right, the regulations take some effort to interpret correctly. I usually keep a few copies in various places so I always have one to reference. To answer your question, when the size is stated at a minimum, as in your example, you’re allowed to keep anything that is the stated length or over. If it helps, the definitions on page 15 of the 2019 Alberta Sportfishing Regulations can help clarify. Here is a link to the current regulations: http://albertaregulations.ca/

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