Lake Erie walleye numbers in stratosphere, future is bright

“The totals are astonishing,” said Hale. “We had high numbers in the 1980s, but we’ve made adjustments to our methods of counting walleye numbers, and believe this year’s population one the best we’ve seen.

“We have estimated today’s population of walleye that are two years old, or older, is about 116 million,” said Hale. “Our forecast for 2021 is a walleye population of 151 million.”

“The largest year-class in our present population is the 2018 class, which makes up about 75 percent of the population,” said Hale. “Anglers will be catching lots of walleye that are under the 15-inch size limit this summer, but those walleye will be legal to keep in 2021.”

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