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Besadny Anadromous Fisheries Facility Report

Fishing Wisconsin

Brown Trout at BAFF

The following information is the salmon and trout processing information for our facility on the Kewaunee River. We will post new information to this site every Tuesday at 4 p.m. from March through April and October through early November. Depending on water conditions and the number of fish in the weir, fish are usually processed on Wednesdays.

In addition, you can read the latest fishing report on our Lake Michigan Outdoor Report page.

Besadny Anadromous Fisheries Facility

Besadny Anadromous Fisheries Facility seeforellen gamete collection Seeforellen brown trout are the only wild strain of brown trout stocked in Wisconsin's Great Lakes. Starting in late October, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) crews use electroshocking boats on several rivers on Lake Michigan to collect seeforellen adults identified by a unique fin clip.

Staff transfer adult seeforellen to Besadny Anadromous Fish Facility, where they are held in ponds. Once a week, from mid-November to mid-December, staff collect eggs and milt from ripe adults. Staff transfer fertilized eggs to the Wild Rose Hatchery. Fish that are not yet ready to spawn are returned to the ponds to be spawned at a later date until the goal of one million eggs is collected. Approximately 400,000 seeforellen are stocked annually into Wisconsin waters of Lake Michigan (300,000) and Lake Superior (100,000).

History of the seeforellen strain in Wisconsin – The first seeforellen brown trout were stocked in Wisconsin in 1991. The DNR obtained eggs from New York from late 1989 to early 1990. The goal was to promote an extended trophy fishery, as seeforellen tend to live a year or two longer and spawn a month or two later in the fall compared to domestic strains of brown trout. The current Wisconsin state record brown trout for outlying waters is a 41-pound, 8-ounce seeforellen that Roger Hellen caught in southern Lake Michigan near Racine in 2010.

Muskellunge – Since 2010, the DNR has worked cooperatively with Kewaunee County to raise Great Lakes spotted musky at Dana Farm. Each May, nets are set in the Fox River to capture spawning musky. The captured musky are measured, weighed, and checked for a fin clip and a PIT Tag spawned, and released into the Fox River. Fertilized eggs are disinfected, water hardened and transported to Dana Farm.

In a small building next to the hill pond, eggs are placed in hatching jars and allowed to hatch. Following hatching, musky are held in the building until they have consumed their yolk sac and then are stocked into the outdoor ponds. While in these ponds, musky are fed bait fish by the truckload, causing rapid growth. By the end of September, they average nearly 12 inches in length. At this time, the musky is seined from the ponds, fin-clipped to denote they were stocked as fingerling, loaded into trucks and hauled to stocking locations around the Bay.

The hill pond has been in use since 2010, while a newly renovated road pond produced its first musky in 2015. The renovation of the road pond was achieved through the generous donations of many musky clubs and the cooperation of the DNR and Kewaunee County. These ponds will continue to raise musky for stocking into Green Bay until either a peer-reviewed disinfection protocol is developed allowing fish to be safely moved from the Fox River to Wild Rose Hatchery or the inland brood lakes produce disease-free eggs in sufficient numbers needed to support the program.

     

April 27, 2022, Besadny Anadromous Fisheries Facility Report

Five steelhead rainbow trout processing days occurred so far this spring (2022) on the Kewaunee River at the Besadny Anadromous Fisheries Facility (BAFF) on April 13, 20, 21, 25 and 27. The numbers of new steelhead processed for data each day respectively were 201, 175, 392, 67 and 154, totaling 989. Most steelhead processed on April 27 were from holding ponds with previously sorted fish, along with a smaller number of new steelhead from the river. With egg collection goals met and numbers of steelhead tapering off (indicating the near end of the spawning run), the BAFF fish ladder was closed on April 27. It was a successful spring steelhead season, with above-average numbers of steelhead at BAFF for 2022. Numbers of steelhead processed annually at BAFF during recent years include 408 (2021), 677 (2019), 710 (2018), 708 (2017), 535 (2016), and 429 (2015).

DATE: April 13, 20, 21, 25, 27 of 2022 RIVER TEMPERATURE:
  Rainbow Trout Chinook Salmon Coho Salmon Brown Trout
Total Captured 989 0 0 0
Passed Upstream 0 0 0 0
Taken to Hatchery 0 0 0 0
Spawned at Facility 121 0 0 0
Egg Take 510,970 0 0 0