Lake Erie has successful 2014 walleye hatch

Walleye fishing Lake Erie Monroe, Michigan

Lake Erie Walleye fishing charter

2014 Lake Erie walleye hatch was the best in the last four years according to the Ohio DNR.

“I’d rate this year’s walleye hatch as pretty decent,” said Jeff Tyson, head of Lake Erie fisheries management for the ODOW. “Ontario is completing their surveys, and they’ve had pretty decent reports of walleye, as well.”

Trawl nets are used to collect small 3- to 4-inch walleye that had hatched during the spawning season March and April. The young walleye initially feed on plankton, switching to small fish as they grow larger.

Tyson emphasized this year’s hatch couldn’t come close to the amazing walleye reproduction in 2003, which still drives Ohio’s sport fishing on Lake Erie. The monstrous 2003 hatch pushed the lake-wide walleye population over the 100 million mark. The walleye population estimate last spring was about 20 million walleye.

This year’s walleye hatch was similar to 2010 and 2007, said Tyson. A steady string of decent hatches in recent years has resulted in a broad range of ages and sizes making up the Lake Erie walleye population.