Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Walleyes in Spawn Mode on Wolf River

The Wolf River Cam in Shiocton doesn't lie, hundreds of pre-spawn Walleyes are making their way past the camera on their way to the many spawning marshes just north of town to spawn the next generation of Winnebago System Walleyes.

The cooler than average spring has the Annual Walleye Run a good week behind schedule, but the wet spring has sent the water over the river banks and into the marshes, making for ideal spawning conditions for the Walleyes.

As witnessed on the Wolf River Cam, Walleyes are still heading upriver, and will be spawning within the next week as water temperatures climb into the low 40's in the marshes.  Once the females lay their eggs, they quickly begin their journey back to the lakes with food being a top priority once again.

The male Walleyes typically hang around the spawning marshes until all the females have spawned before slowly making their way downriver and eventually back into the lakes also.  Post-spawn Walleyes are much easier to catch than pre-spawn Walleyes, so I am expecting the bite to really turn on by next weekend, as a majority of the fish will have spawned by then.

Check back for more updates on the stage of the spawn and also fishing reports on the Wolf River in the next 2 weeks as I hope to get out several times in search of some hungry post-spawn Walleyes!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Crazy Weather Continues to Challenge Anglers

Well Mother Nature certainly didn't want us to forget what she is capable of after spoiling us last spring!  Average temperatures should now be in the mid 50's, yet we have only hit 50° a couple of times all spring so far!  To make matters even worse, our warm spring last year was coupled with sunshine and mainly dry conditions, something we are all longing for this year! 

Despite the weather, there are fish being caught throughout the area.  The most consistent fish producing location has been the Fox River in Depere, where the spawn has been going strong for the past 2 weeks, and there have been hundreds of "legal" sized Walleyes caught by shore and boat anglers alike.  This has to be one of the best spring runs in Depere that I can remember for both quantity and quality!

Door County has also been going strong for late ice Walleyes near Sturgeon Bay, as there has been a very consistent morning and evening bite for trophy pre-spawn Walleyes through the ice.  The largest reported Walleye I have heard coming from this area was a 13.94 pounder caught by Scott Rohloff!  This fish, as well as many others, was caught on a jig and minnow near bottom.

The Wolf River has also opened up, presenting a decent pre-spawn bite, but heavy current and poor visibilities has slowed the bite a bit.  There are still fish being caught from the mouth at Lake Poygan all the way to the Shawano Dam.  I expect the bite on the Wolf to really pick up in about a week and a half as the fish spawn and begin to thing about feeding again.

The Fox River near Eureka has also been better than normal this spring for both size and numbers of Walleyes.  Guys are catching fish anchoring and drifting, with many pre-spawn females being caught and hopefully released to do their thing.

If trolling Browns on Lake Michigan is your thing, this has been a brutal spring!  Conditions have been anything but favorable for getting the boat in and catching numbers of Browns!  Hopefully the winds will switch back around and clean things up a bit to make it worth your while!

Lastly, the spring Steelhead run has been really good for those paying attention to flows and water clarity.  When the clarity has been decent, the Steelhead have been biting really well!  Unfortunately for most of our rivers in the region, the recent snow melt and heavy rains have turned our tributaries into raging mudwater for now!

No matter what mother nature throws our way, there are always great fishing opportunities available here in Northeast Wisconsin if you are will to try something new!