DNR: Walleye Populations In Iowa Great Lakes Appear Good; Hopeful For Successful Walleye Weekend

Wed 5-1-2019

(Orleans)-- All indicators are that the opener of the walleye season on the Iowa Great Lakes should be a successful one for anglers. Mike Hawkins, a fisheries biologist with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources tells KUOO news he's basing that prediction, in part, on the success of this year's gillnetting operations...Walleye Weekend Outlook 

"I think that the walleyes, most of the walleyes should have had plenty of time here to start recovering from the spawn which occurred earlier this month, so that's good news. After the spawn is completed those fish will start to feed again and start to recover all those calories lost through that spawning event. So that means, for the angler that means a little better action. We've got very consistent growth in the Iowa Great Lakes, consistent population levels. Our netting this year indicated really healthy populations of larger fish. We don't tend to see some of the smaller fish in the spring when we're brood stock netting, but the sampling that has been done and last fall and over the last year indicates that those numbers are very good for smaller fish, the kind of fish folks are usually after, say those 13 to 16 or 17 inch walleyes. So all things look good. I just hope the weather cooperates."

And when it comes to that, forecasters say Walleye Weekend should start on a dry and mild note, with rain chances returning to the forecast Saturday night and early Sunday.