Unveiling Wisconsin’s Fishing Season End: A Comprehensive Guide for Anglers

When does fishing season end in Wisconsin?

Fishing is a popular recreational activity in Wisconsin, attracting enthusiasts from all over the country. Whether you are a seasoned angler or just starting out, it’s important to stay informed about fishing regulations, including when the fishing season ends. Understanding the specific dates for the end of fishing seasons can help you plan your trips and ensure compliance with local laws.

The General Fishing Season

In Wisconsin, the general fishing season refers to the period when most fish species can be legally caught and kept. It typically starts in early March and extends until late November or early December each year. While these dates serve as a guideline, it’s crucial to note that they might vary slightly depending on the region and specific waterbody.

Exceptions for Different Fish Species

Although there is a general fishing season, certain fish species have their own unique regulations regarding open seasons and catch limits. Here are some notable exceptions:


The musky (also known as muskellunge) has its own distinct season running from May 1st through November 30th statewide.


The walleye also has different rules across various regions of Wisconsin. For instance:

  • In northern Wisconsin inland waters – walleye season generally runs from May 2nd through March 7th of the following year;
  • In southern counties – walleye may be fished continuously throughout the year;
  • Lake Michigan waters follow separate regulations based on treaty rights; make sure to check those before planning your trip.


Bass includes both largemouth bass and smallmouth bass. The season for catching largemouth bass typically aligns with the general fishing season, whereas the season for smallmouth bass generally runs from early May through late June.

Ice Fishing Season

When winter arrives in Wisconsin, it doesn’t mean you have to put away your fishing gear. Ice fishing is a popular pastime during the colder months. Generally, ice fishing seasons begin around mid-December and end in late February or early March, depending on weather conditions and ice thickness. Safety should always be a priority when venturing out onto frozen bodies of water; make sure the ice is thick enough to support your weight before proceeding.

Specific Regulations by Waterbody

In addition to considering statewide regulations, it’s essential to research specific rules for individual waterbodies as they might have additional restrictions that apply due to size limits, special designations (e.g., trout streams), or unique conservation efforts.


Fishing seasons in Wisconsin vary based on species and location, so it’s crucial for anglers to stay up-to-date with current regulations before casting their lines. Remember that these dates can change slightly each year due to natural factors or adjustments made by wildlife management authorities. By respecting these guidelines and local laws while enjoying your favorite hobby, you can ensure the long-term sustainability of fish populations while also having an unforgettable experience exploring Wisconsin’s bountiful waters.