Monthly Archives: April 2016

Good Day at the Hatchery and on Geneva Lake

Covenant Harbor sWe had a very good day at the hatchery and on Geneva Lake today. The rain had passed earlier in the morning so we were good that way, although it was very foggy on the lake and it was a slow travel to the netting area.

We filled up the remainder of the jars today with 1,125,000 eggs from walleyes in the 22” to 25” range. The male to female ratio was around 1 to 1 and the males have been getting more scarce the last 2 days. We have a full hatchery as of this morning with 6,220,000 eggs collected and incubating. We stripped eggs from just under 60 females and around 90 males were used for fertilization. We tried to use 2 males per female when available. It took 6 net nights with 6 fyke nets to get what we needed to fill 18 jars, with 2 jars devoted to hospital jars for a total of 20 jars utilized.

The netting crew will go out tomorrow morning to remove the nets from the lake and begin cleaning them. We need people on Saturday morning to stretch out the nets and power wash them and begin mending. This will be done at Geneva Lake Bait and Tackle on HWY 67 just south of where HWY 50 crosses 67 in Williams Bay (top of the hill). 8 am start time and work until early afternoon or so. Stay and help for as long as you can-an hour or 2 devoted is appreciated.

Now the incubation period is the focus with egg care and hatchery maintenance checks the daily and evening routine. I will send updates every few days now until fry hatch, then more often as we run thru that period.

Congratulations to those who helped during the last 6 days for filling the hatchery with eggs-not as easy to do by being more size selective and turning back very large fish with enough eggs in them to fill a jar per fish. Now we have eggs from 7 fish in 2 jars some days. A great job done by everyone!!

P.S. Check the Chicago Sun Times for Walleyes For Tomorrow Walworth Co. story. It is a very well done article. I think it was published 4-19, or 4-20.

Brian H. Simon
Walworth Co. Chapter Chairman
Walleyes For Tomorrow

Report from Green Lake

image1After several outboard motor issues, we set seven nets the evening of the twenty-second. In cooperation with the local DNR biologist who are currently performing their five year warm water fish survey, we are running three of their nets so we actually have ten nets to work.

We got three net-nights under our belts. We have handled 137 walleyes, with 38 of which were “workable” females (nothing over 26″ do we strip, this also accounts for green females – all these fish were documented then released) to 61 lively always ready boys – decent ratio.

We have 3’072’000 future walleye dinners/wall-hangers incubating. Hatching of those eggs will begin about 5/12 with full hatching on 5/16. Target is around 9’300’000 eggs, with a target release number of 7’500’000. We’ll see how it all goes, we’ve got a great hatchery attended – should go fine.

The DNR is in the final stage of the plan


The DNR is in the final stage of the plan and there has been NO comments from walleye fishermen at their outreach meetings. There was a meeting in Cleveland and no walleye interested people or group attended. Prior meetings had similar attendance.

Commercial fishermen and the trout and salmon lobby have been VERY active and outspoken. Their written comments are the only documented opinion of the scope and intent of the plan.

Without other opinion input these interests will have a huge say in the 10 year plan and walleye will be under represented.

Whitefish harvesters are pushing for increased netting of whitefish in southern Green Bay. Walleye are considered incidental catch and an imposition and the harvesters are pushing for permission to keep and sell walleye.

They claim walleye are in such numbers that they are adversely affecting forage production. Particularly perch and young whitefish. Commercial sale would be an avenue to reduce the forage impact under this opinion.

The only present limitation of trap net placement is a 1/4 mile from shore restriction.

The trap net issue is in a 30 day comment period. Get involved and make it known that walleye management and population expansion should be front and center in the 10 year plan.

Get involved and write a letter to DNR in Green Bay, Sturgeon Bay and Milwaukee emphasizing a stated walleye management plan and platform in the 10 year plan.

Egg Gathering Operation on the Big Eau Pleine flowage

I had occasion to help Walleyes For Tomorrow with the walleye egg gathering operation on the Big Eau Pleine flowage a couple days this past week. The attached photos are from today, Sat. April 16th 2016. Fifteen males and 38 females were netted today. 42-44* surface temps. Fish were in all three stages: post spawn, spawning, and pre-spawn. Big fish today was 29”, and yesterday a 31” was netted. A total of three million eggs are in the hatchery jars at this time.