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03/28/2015 @ 08:03 PM

Iowa Walleye: Widespread Gains for Anglers as Researchers Build Fishing “Field of Dreams”

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DES MOINES - No one who has ever seen Field of Dreams can forget the signature line from that motion picture: “Build it and they will come.”

What if the scenario of a mythic Iowa cornfield was changed just a bit: no ball diamonds, but fishing lakes amidst fields of Iowa corn? And what if the fabled legend to emerge from another era was a fish, one that’s particular about its need for clear, clean water?

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Walleye Mania: For Clear Lake's Most Popular Game Fish - The Bite is On!

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PHOTO: Mike Britt of Owatonna, Minnesota, displays a mixed catch of walleye and yellow bass. The Minnesota angler bagged the fish while wading at the Clear Lake Island. In addition to taking his limit, Britt also caught and released several more walleye during the late afternoon outing.
In spite of the fact that he resides in The Land of 10,000 Lakes, Britt makes frequent excursions to Clear Lake.
“I usually have my best success here during early spring and summer,” says Britt. “I also do a lot of fishing in Minnesota and my friends give me grief over coming down here [Iowa] to fish. I just tell them, ‘That’s OK. You guys just stay up here and I’ll keep going down to Clear Lake’.”
Britt shared his Clear Lake Island excursion with 27 other anglers. Twenty-five of those anglers caught fish. Nearly all took limits of walleye.

By Lowell Washburn
All Photos by Lowell Washburn
Iowa Department of Natural Resources

CLEAR LAKE – One of my annual outdoor goals is to hook a walleye on the very first cast of the spring fishing season. Although I’ve never been successful at achieving the dream, I came pretty close this year.

I didn’t begin fishing until last week, and the walleye spawn was approaching its peak as I waded into the chilly waters of Clear Lake. The sky was overcast and the shoreline was littered with rock --- prime conditions for shallow water, early season spawners.

Other anglers were already on the scene, including my son Matt. Wading in that direction I was pleased to discover that, in less than 15 minutes of fishing, he had already taken two legal walleye and had just released a sub-legal, 13-incher.

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Rice Lake Provides Unlikely Home for North Iowa Walleyes

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PHOTO: Retired Lake Mills math instructor, Frank Banwart, spends a quiet afternoon fishing for walleyes at Winnebago County’s Rice Lake. “I’ve been getting a few crappies and some small bullheads lately, but mostly I’ve been catching walleyes,” says Banwart. “I let most of the fish go. I don’t want to keep anything that is full of eggs.”
“I definitely like ice fishing the best, but fall fishing is so peaceful. Even if I’m not catching anything, I hate to go home,” he grinned.
Banwart is 74. Photo by: Lowell Washburn

By Lowell Washburn
Iowa Department of Natural Resources

LAKE MILLS---Wary, scrappy, and elusive the walleye is regarded as a prized gamefish wherever it occurs. In Iowa, peak populations are most frequently associated with big waters --- the Iowa Great Lakes, the Mississippi river, or the larger of our interior streams.

Mention walleyes to a north central Iowa angler, for example, and the conversation will immediately turn to Clear Lake --- one the state’s premier walleye fisheries. But those anglers who have been around the block a time or two will tell you that there is always more than one way to skin a cat, and more than one place to hook a walleye.

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Fishing report 7/22 pool 13

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I was out walleye fishing and me and a fishing buddy got 6 pike all over 30" never got 1 pike off the river in 20 years of fishing then 6 in 1 day fishing for walleye with a jig head and a leach are they coming back?

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Walleye Season Opens May 5 at East Okoboji, West Okoboji, and Big Spirit

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From the IDNR

SPIRIT LAKE - Walleye anglers heading to Dickinson County for the 2007
walleye opener at the Iowa Great Lakes will have a lot of work to do to
match the tremendous harvest from 2006. The 2006 walleye harvest was
the highest since 1984.

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The dirt on catching river walleyes

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since spring is getting somewhat close.. have you ever wondered how to catch ol' marble eyes when we get all the snow melt and it muddys up the rivers? heres some reading i came across that tells you how to catch them.. CLICK HERE FOR STORY

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Natural lakes Survey Reveals Good Survival for 2006 Walleye Stockings

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From the IDNR

By Lowell Washburn
Iowa Department of Natural Resources

CLEAR LAKE---DNR fisheries personnel have completed their annual young of the year fish surveys. Conducted each year during late summer and early fall, the netting census is designed to gauge the production, survival, and growth of more than a dozen fish species occurring in Iowa's natural lakes.

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Setter, Chuckles and Ducks

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It started many months......actually years ago, with an idea to get 3 guys together for either a fishing trip or a hunting trip. Many good intentions but nothing every seemed to develop. Our schedules just never seemed to allow the 3 of us(Setter, Chuckles and myself) to get together. Well, that all changed the weekend of June 3-5 and we finally fulfilled the fishing half of our plans. The hunting trip we will take care of this fall.

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Radio Walleyes

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I thought you walleye folks might be interested in this story from IDNR.

By Joe Wilkinson
Iowa Department of Natural Resources

Prowling the edge of the wing dam, we went just a few minutes without
success. Then, one appeared. A quick dip in the water and Caleb
Schnitzler pulled nearly five-pound walleye on board. This one would be
going right back in the water shortly; along with the three bigger ones
that followed on the Mississippi River, upstream from Sabula, in Jackson

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Iowa Walleye Opener

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Ryan Hale, site member and guide on the Iowa Great Lakes, has written an article to help those that plan to fish the madness of the Iowa walleye opener on Okoboji and Spirit Lakes this year. Following his tips may just boat you more walleyes this year! Read the story he wrote for In-Depth Angling here --> Tips for Early Season Success: Fishing the Iowa Walleye Opener

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