refers to the German common name of the European
relative) and vitreus means "glassy", referring to the
It is believed
that the walleye was originally confined to the larger
lakes and waterways in Wisconsin. The extensive stocking
of walleye fry and fingerlings that occurred early in
many Wisconsin waters partly obscured the original
distribution of the species. Today the walleye is
present throughout Wisconsin.
Spawning: The spawning
migration of walleye begins soon after the ice goes out,
at water temperatures of 38 - 44º F. Spawning in
Wisconsin generally occurs between mid-April and early
May, although it may extend from the beginning of April
to the middle of May. Walleye spawning ordinarily
reaches a peak when water temperatures are 42 - 50º F.
The walleye is not a territorial fish at spawning time;
they usually broadcast their eggs and exercise no
Angling: The walleye is one of
the most highly prized game fishes in Wisconsin.
Thousands are caught each year during their spring
spawning runs. Walleyes are primarily minnow feeders,
but leeches, small bullheads, nightcrawlers, and various
small plugs are favorite baits. In clear waters,
walleyes usually stay in deeper areas during the day,
moving into the shallows at night. In more turbid
waters, they can be caught throughout the day. The
large, unusual eyes of the walleye are designed to help
them easily find their prey.