According to a press release issued by the Department of Environmental Conservation, on February 24, Environmental Conservation Officers Scott Pierce and Jason Hilliard were on patrol at the annual Walleye Challenge Ice Fishing Tournament on the Great Sacandaga Lake in Fulton County when the officers came upon an ice shanty and two fishermen.
According to the ECOs, a small opening in the ice had been dug next to the shanty to form a live-well, and a number of walleye and perch were stored there. Some fish were alive and others were not. ECO Pierce reported that he counted 13 walleye in the pool of water, which put the two fishermen over the daily limit of walleye.
According to DEC, the fishermen said they were going to release the extra walleye after the tournament. ECOs Pierce Hilliard asked the fishermen to release the five live walleye back to the lake.
The fishermen were charged with taking and possessing in excess of the daily limit of walleye.
Photo of ECO Pierce at the makeshift live-well, provided.