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Sturgeon spearing on frozen Lake Winnebago, Wisconsin

Join correspondent Julie Henning in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin for the opening weekend of the 2014 sturgeon-spearing season. Replacing buffalo hides with propane-heated ice shanties and modern conveniences, the thrill of the hunt is the same. 

Regulated by the Department of Natural Resources and protected by the non-profit Sturgeon for Tomorrow, a two-week sturgeon-spearing season occurs through the frozen surface of Lake Winnebago in Northeastern Wisconsin.

Some equate the sturgeon-experience to shooting ducks through a chimney: odds are only 13 percent you’ll even see the beastly looking fish. A time of ritual, tradition, and celebration, more than eleven thousand people typically apply for an annual sturgeon-spearing license.

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Tom Wilmer produces on-air content for Issues & Ideas airing over KCBX and is producer and host of the six-time Lowell Thomas award-winning NPR podcast Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer. Recorded live on-location across America and around the world, the podcasts feature the arts, culture, music, nature, history, science, wine & spirits, brewpubs, and the culinary arts--everything from baseball to exploring South Pacific atolls to interviewing the real Santa Claus in the Arctic.
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