A new minimum length limit on crappie and a stricter rule on fishing with yo-yos have been proposed for Lake Washington, the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks announced Friday.

The proposal, which was included in the agency’s 2016-17 statewide regulation changes, would go into effect on July 1, if the wildlife commission gives it final approval at its May meeting.

While increasing the minimum length limit from 10 to 11 inches, the agency would still allow fishermen to keep five fish under 11 inches per day. The rest of the 30-fish daily limit would have to exceed 11 inches. The regulation would include the outlet channel from Lake Washington to the weir at Paul Love Park.

“The number of anglers fishing Lake Washington has been increasing over the past several years, and we are proposing these changes to help protect the crappie fishery from overharvest,” said MDWFP fisheries biologist, Nathan Aycock.  “The regulations will increase the average size of fish harvested, and still allow folks to harvest fish for their table.”  

As for yo-yos, the proposed change will require anglers fishing to stay within sight of these devices whenever they are being fished.  MDWFP Law Enforcement officers will have the authority to seize or confiscate unattended yo-yos.

All proposals within the 2016-17 regulations are now in a comment period. Anyone wishing to comment on the proposed change may do so in writing to the Executive Director, Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks, 1505 Eastover Dr., Jackson, MS 39211, no later than May 21.