Volunteers sought to help protect spawning sturgeon from poachers

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OSHKOSH, Wis. — Each Spring, volunteers are needed to guard lake sturgeon from the Lake Winnebago system as they migrate to spawning sites on the Wolf River to protect the fish from poaching. The Sturgeon Guard program is a partnership between the Department of Natural Resources and Sturgeon for Tomorrow, a local sturgeon conservation organization.

Guards are scheduled in pairs, in 12-hour shifts, with shift changes at 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. While it is impossible to predict the exact dates that spawning will occur each year, guards are routinely scheduled somewhere within a window from April 15 through May 5, but exact dates and locations are not predictable, so some shifts have to be cancelled. Spawning generally occurs for a five to seven day period.

Prior to assignment, guards check in at “Sturgeon Camp” just north of Shiocton, where they receive a meal, a sack lunch, two-way radios to stay in contact with conservation wardens, and a Sturgeon Guard identification hat.

Volunteers can sign up through the DNR website (type “Sturgeon Guard” into the search box). There is a form that can be filled out and emailed to DNRSturgeonGuard [at] wisconsin [dot] gov. Or they can send an e-mail to this address and express their interest, including a phone number and a time range for a call back. Or you can call 920-303-5444 and leave the call back information. Call will be returned to try and schedule a time that works out for volunteers.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Sturgeon Guard – 920-303-5444