Fishing at Hennepin and Hopper Will Reopen This Year

Image courtesy of the News Tribune
The Wetlands Initiative is working with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to reopen public fishing this year at the Sue and Wes Dixon Waterfowl Refuge at Hennepin and Hopper Lakes south of Henry.

“The lakes are healthier than they’ve been at any time since The Wetlands Initiative has been involved and the fishery is doing great,” said initiative executive director, Paul Botts. “There won’t be any sort of fishing club with extra days or hours or any membership-type fee. Public fishing at the Dixon Refuge will now be just that, public fishing open to all.”

Dates and hours have not yet been established. Fishing was suspended in 2009 to permit drainage, removal of common carp and wetland restoration.

“With the change in state administration it’s not a fast process right now working with any agency on a written agreement,” Botts said.

The DNR has the expertise and staff to help The Wetlands Initiative rid the lakes of carp and restore native fish, he said.

“One of our primary goals at the Dixon Refuge is to have a sustainable fishery and the DNR staff are the experts on successfully managing public fisheries,” Botts said. “The details will follow just as soon as we can work through the state’s review process.”

Source: News Tribune