Anglers are asked to report tagged fish to help with data collection efforts. The DNR wants to know the species, length, weight (if known), tag location (where the tag was attached), ID number, tag return address, and the capture date and location.
You should list the time of capture and sex of fish (if known) in the notes box of the form. Each tag has a unique identifying number (the larger of the two sets of numbers). The tag return address is styled like MICH DNR MM-1.
After you’ve reported the fish, the DNR will send you a letter detailing the fish’s history.
“The information reported is essential to measuring the health of the population and is critical data for planning the future management decisions needed to protect and enhance this important fishery,” said David Fielder, PhD. research biologist out of the DNR’s Alpena Fisheries Research Station. “Besides ensuring the walleye fishery remains sustainable, we also annually estimate the population size with the aid of these tag reports.”
The DNR has tagged more than 100,000 walleye in the Saginaw Bay area since 1981. About 10% of the tags include a $100 reward for reporting. To be eligible for the reward you have to include a photo of the flattened tag. You can keep or release the fish. If you don’t want the reward, leave the tag on the fish before you release it.
Click here if you’d like to learn more about marked and tagged fish in Michigan.