|FISH AND BOAT COMMISSION TO EVALUATE WALLEYE STOCKINGS IN SUSQUEHANNA,
LEHIGH AND ALLEGHENY RIVERS
|May 20, 2008
|Harrisburg, PA - The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) has announced
that it has stopped walleye fry stockings in the Susquehanna, Lehigh and Allegheny rivers on an experimental
basis. Fry are young fish in their early stage of life, from one to three weeks old.
“We have been stocking
walleye fry in portions of these rivers where spawning habitat was believed to be poor,” said Dave Miko, PFBC
Chief - Division of Fisheries Management. “In some of these waters, dams restricted the ability of walleye to
move freely throughout the river. However, the recent removal of dams or the improvement of fish passage
over these dams has provided walleye with increased access to spawning areas.
“As a result, we think the current
level of natural reproduction in these rivers may be capable of sustaining the walleye population and providing
the recreational opportunities that anglers have come to expect.”
PFBC biologists will determine if the stocked
walleye have been making a significant contribution to the total population in the rivers by conducting
fall electrofishing surveys. Biologists have been routinely counting yearling walleye during fall electrofishing
surveys. They will continue to count yearling walleye at the same locations during the years when no walleye are stocked.
This will provide a measure of stocking success.
Also, because not all sections of the rivers have been stocked with walleye,
biologists will compare the number of walleye collected in stocked and non-stocked sections as an additional
expects that it will require at least three years of not stocking to determine if natural walleye reproduction
in these rivers is adequate.