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Walleye fishing on Lake Mille Lacs closes Wednesday for the month of July, backed by a regulation that anglers cannot use most live baits for any species.

The bans were put in place to slow this year’s harvest of walleyes so that catch-and-release walleye fishing can resume Aug. 1 through Nov. 30.

The exceptions for live bait are sucker minnows at least 8 inches long to target northerns and muskies, and wax worms for panfish and perch.

The walleye plan for Mille Lacs is tied to the state’s safe-harvest allocation of 87,800 pounds. “Harvest” includes the estimated mortality of fish caught and released.

Nearly 30,000 pounds of the 2020 quota were met during winter’s ice fishing season. Another 5,500 pounds of walleyes died during catch-and-release fishing from May 9 to May 31.

TONY KENNEDY