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Walleye

September 18, 2021

Walleye

The Walleye is a freshwater perciform fish native to the Northern United States and Canada. Walleye belong to the perch family with the scientific name Sander vitreus. It is also called walleyed pike, yellow pike, or yellow pickerel.

The name walleyed pike is due to its opaque, cloudy-looking eye, which has pigmented layer tapetum lucidum that helps them see in low light.

Physical Characteristics:

Color:

Walleyed pikes are primarily gold and olive-colored. The belly is white with black bars at the back. 

Mouth:

The walleye has a large mouth with sharp teeth.

Fins:

Walleyed has two dorsal fins, one soft-rayed and one spiny. The caudal fin is white-colored that distinguishes them from the members of their family. 

Size and Weight:

The weight of walleye ranges from 4.5 to 9 kilograms, and they are 0.75 to 0.9 meters in length. 

The weight increases as walleye grow. 

Habitat and Distribution:

They are common to freshwater pools, backwaters, lakes and mostly prefer shallow turbid lakes. They are primarily present in cool, deep, quiet rivers.

The Walleyed pike is nocturnal during the day. However, they are present under cover of tree logs, roots, and aquatic plants.

They are native to Canada and distributed in the Missouri River basin, the Great Lakes, and the northeastern and western United States.

The walleye is the state fish of  Vermont, Minnesota, and South Dakota and the official provincial fish of Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Diet:

Walleye mainly feed at dawn and dusk; their diet may include 

  • Small fish

  • Insects

  • Fly larvae

  • Zooplankton

  • Rayfish

  • Minnows

  • Leeches

  • Invertebrates

Reproduction and Life Cycle:

Walleye spawn in early summer or spring when the temperature is 6 to 10 °C, eggs are laid in the shallow water. The eggs will hatch in about two weeks. The incubation period of the embryo is temperature-independent.

Walleye Fishing:

Walleye fish is most challenging to target, but if you take into account specific tips and techniques, it might be helpful, and these are

Select the Right Gear:

Spinning reel and the rod is your first choice for walleye fishing. For the fishing lines, select the Monofilament line, which offers forgiving stretch.

Best Lures and Baits:

Live baits will make your walleye trip a worth experience; the good options can be

  • Minnows

  • Leeches & 

  • Worms

  • Crankbaits

  • Soft Plastics

Jigs and Rigs for Walleye:

One of the best and most popular techniques to target the walleye is jigging, and for this, jigs like fireball style and Barbed-Jig.

The most popular rigs for walleye are

  • Spinner Rig

  • Live Bait Rig

  • Slip Bobber Rig

Practice:

Some people find it frustrating because walleye fishing requires patience and practice. Instead, focus on your efforts according to fish's habitats and feeding habits so that you can enjoy the challenge.




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