Target Walleye/Ice email

Walleye pukes rainbow, Fish can get cataracts, LiveScope now a must

Today’s Top 5

33″ walleye pukes up a rainbow trout! 

Chris O’Connor cracked this 33″ mondo on SK’s Lake Diefenbaker pulling leadcore in 8-12′ with custom-painted Salmo Hornets. Insane fish [!] but it gets crazier….

It regurgimatated a digested 2-lb rainbow trout in the boat! No doubt this spawned-out female was putting on the feedbag:

 

Wow, just WOW! Thx much for sending in, Chris.

Hiya folks, Gord Pyzer’s here!

Gotta be Canada’s most scientific angler:

 

I came across an interesting snippet while reading one of Gord’s newest write-ups called “Make (walleye) hay when the sun shines.” Check this out:

> “…walleyes are negatively phototactic. They hate bright light and see better in dim lighted conditions. In fact, I remember good friend and OMNR colleague Dr. Peter Colby, who headed up our walleye research unit, telling me that when he held captive walleye at the research station, they would quickly develop cataracts if they couldn’t shift locations and get out of the light….”

I knew they were sensitive little buggers but wow! Makes a little more sense why a lot of times on bright-sunshiny days you’ll find ’em:
1) Buried in the weeds,
2) On the bottom edges of mud flats,
3) Tucked away in inside-corners of steep breaks,
4) Roaming the basin,
5) Or straight-up nowhere to be found! Lol.

Mix in clouds or a “walleye chop” and they can come out of the woodworks.

Also gotta shout-out that Gord used the term “rock melons” in the write-up:

> “Use this surprising tactic to hook rock melons in the bright sun.”

Love it man!

He’ talking about the difference between feeding fish and striking fish…how you can maybe get a couple of them to actually eat finesse presentations, but ripping either the hard-to-find 2.5″ Acme Hyper-Rattle or a #6 Rapala Flat Jig triggers a “reflex movement” making ’em go “berserk” whether they’re hungry or not.

Gord breaks down his favorite technique/setups for high-sky rock melons here.

Parade of pigs!

Time for another “parade of pigs” jammed full of shots sent in from Target Walleye fans. We get sent a pile of pics from folks wantin’ to be featured, so can’t always sneak every one into the emails…but know we see and appreciate ’em — thx all! Heeeere we go:

 

1)  BIlly Sharp stuck himself this old 28.25″ bruiser out of a small MT rez. Caught snap jigging a “pearl” Walleye Turbo Shad in 8′ around new weed growth:

 

Cool factoid from Billy:

> “The first 2 spines are clipped by the Fish & Game dept for aging purposes. The spines have rings just like the otoliths.”

Now you (we) know!

 

2)  Cole and Shannon Frenzel (Frenzel Outdoors) had themselves a day on Lake Sakakawea [!!!] that included a 29.25″ (11-lb 2-oz) walleye and massive 46.5″ pike — both released for someone else to catch:

 

No word if she ever did let Cole catch one that trip…

 

3)  Danny Olsen caught and released this 29-incher near Akaska, SD (Missouri River?) using an 8-oz drop weight and “black silver” Berkley Flicker Minnow. Congrats on the new PB!

 

Here’s actual footage from Danny’s GoPro after the fish hit the net:

 

4)  Phil Nadjiwon put the smackdown on this purtty 29.25″ Algoma walleye trolling a “my secret” color Bay Rat Long Deep Diver. Said his buddy Josh Eddy “did his best to knock her off with the net at the boat” lol. Awesome fish, man!

 

5)  Glen Wright hit up Lake Huron’s Georgian Bay — among the “Thirty Thousand Islands” — and used a Berkley Flicker Shad to troll his way into the 30″ club:

 

6)  Another Dale Hollow Lake, TN tank! Jake Wyman whacked this 28-incher (8.8 lbs) trolling in 30′ with a “blue tiger” color Bay Rat Long Extra Deep. Great fish, man!

 “Garmin LiveScope is now a must-have. Period.”

– That’s a Top Item in a recent BassBlaster email talking how Garmin LiveScope is absolutely dominating in the bass tourney world — specifically smallmouth events where most of the field is fishing deeper water…aka walleye land.

From BassBlaster:

> “A must-have for the pros anyhow cuz word is Garmin LiveScope has been a HUGE advantage in smallmouth country this season. Massively, massively huge. In the Elite, somewhere around 35 of the top 40 dudes used it, including guys sponsored by other ‘lectronics companies. Believe Bill was one of ’em….

> “Look at the standings of the smallmouth tourneys. See any guys up high that surprise you? See guys down lower that surprise you? I do. Not taking anything away from the folks who did well at all, just pointing it out.

> “Is the LiveScope advantage a surprise? Kinda yeah but kinda no. Yep because it was a surprise to peeps who are, let’s say, way better fishermen than most of us reading this — they were blown away by how much of an advantage it was. On the other hand, LiveScope continues to amaze so….

> “Bear in mind that some guys — notably Jacob Wheeler and I think Justin Lucas, among others — don’t have an electronics sponsor because they have several different brands of units on their boats. Why? Because they feel they need ’em to win. Jacob won’t even talk about why he has the different units and how he sets ’em up….

> “Remember a couple years back when Spot-Lock was the deal? Sounds like LiveScope’s the new deal.”

If you fish walleyes in the Midwest, you already know — maybe by accident — that smallies and waldos often use the same spots/areas. To me, it seems like LiveScope would be (will be…is be…?) an even bigger player in the walleye world ‘cuz more fish are typically found deeper (where it’s generally easier to see fish with LiveScope). Also just seems to be fewer targets = more important/difficult to catch a limit on tourney day. Of course that depends on the water, but generally speaking….

Definitely have been seeing way more folks finishing high — or even winning — NWT, MWC and AIM events and flat-up crediting LiveScope for their payday…and would guess there’s a bunch others using it that haven’t admitted to doing so….

Can you guess walleye’s favorite kind of pizza?

You’d think the obvious answer would be one loaded with sardines or anchovies…

 

…but turns out waldos aren’t all that picky with their toppings — was sent this info from TW fan Alan Windisch:

> “This is what was found on the carpet of my friend’s boat after landing and the subsequent flopping around on the floor trying to get a pic with the 21-1/8″ late-night catch. After up-close examination, we determined the walleye ate and then spit up a partially-digested pepperoni slice. Talk about stink bait.”

 

Can’t make this stuff up.

News

1. MI: Massive man-made reefs being built in Lake Michigan.

> “…a crane methodically is placing slabs of native limestone, glacial boulders and cobbles, and large woody debris such as tree trunks and root wads on the lake bottom as a man-made assist for fish and wildlife.

> “The structures are being built in 2 clusters north and south of Cliff Road in about 10-13′. When finished, the man-made reef will be about 4-7′ beneath the surface…. [engineers and biologists created the design]

> “The contractor is following GPS coordinates and examining the progress with sonar to create domes and linear structures containing nooks, crannies and other spaces that mimic natural reefs found on the coastline.”

I can think of about 125 NWT pros that would like to get their hands on those GPS coordinates…no doubt they’ll go out and get ’em themselves!

Remember the $1 mil man-made reef plopped in Saginaw Bay that we mentioned last summer? Wonder if folks have been fishing it (and catching) yet?

> “Nearly 23K tons of rocks are being used to create the offshore reef in waters northeast of Bay City. The $1 million project aims to revitalize walleye and other fish populations in Lake Huron and Saginaw Bay.

> “When it’s finished, the reef will cover about 3 acres…be about 5′ tall in waters that are 18-21’…and provide a rocky habitat to promote fish reproduction.

> “When walleye only spawn in rivers, a whole generation can be wiped out by river flooding or other environmental factors.

> “Historically, Saginaw Bay had both reef spawners and river spawners. Today, we principally just have the river spawners left. What we’re trying to do is diversify the sources of reproduction and, in doing so, that generates more resiliency in the population.”

Man, what I wouldn’t give to have just a dozen of those rocks dropped on a juicy spot in one of our local lakes! #SpotOnTheSpot

2. MN: AIM state championship’s on Lake of the Woods.

Today and tomorrow. I’m almost scared to see what the winning weight will be…scared in a reeeeally good but slightly fish-jealous way. AIM’s been posting updates on their FB page, and there’s some absolute GIANTS rolling in. Here’s 4 for 120″+ just from this morning:

No doubt Lake of the Woods is a special place!

3. CO’s losing a mini walleye factory.

Jumbo (Julesburg) Reservoir. Water levels are plummeting from severe drought conditions. They expect the entire fishery to be a loss:

> “CPW issued an emergency public fish salvage: Fishing will only be permitted during daylight hours, with size, bag, and possession limits suspended until the emergency public salvage is terminated.”

4. MN: Cass Lake MWC happenin’ Sep 18-19 (PDF).

5. MO: Another person bit by a muskie.

Believe it’s the first time ever documented in MO, but the second similar story in the last month-ish.

Happened to Zach Reynolds While kayak bass fishing on Pomme de Terre:

> “It was so hot, it was burning the tops of my feet so I had them in the water as I was reeling in that bass. I was still reeling when something hit the top of my left foot. I pulled my foot up and there was blood all over it.”

> “I knew it was a muskie…if I had to guess, I’d say it was maybe 20-30”.

> “People spend hours and hours trying to catch one of these, and here he got bit by one. I guess we found a new bait!”

6. Mystery Tackle Box crushed it during Covid.

> …ecommerce sales in Mar were up 115% year over year, and its Apr sales were up nearly 200%.

7. VA: Couple of proposed reg changes.

You locals have until Oct 11 to weigh in on ’em:

> Claytor Lake: change to 2/day limit, no harvest between 19-28″, year round.

> New River upstream of Buck Dam: change to statewide walleye regs.

8. Hatch-matcher of the day…

We always hear people talking about it, but here’s the photo definition of the phrase “match the hatch” thanks to Jason Mitchell’s Salmo Rattlin’ Sting:

Somehow looks more real than the real thing….

9. VA/MD/DC: Invasive rusty crayfish spreading.Crowding out native species.

10. MN: Starry stonewort confirmed in Lake Carnelian.

11. NE: Zeebz found in Lake Kampeska.

12. NY: “Jumping earthworms” now in western NY.

Invasive species:

> “…similar to the actions of Asian carp…when these suckers are disturbed, they thrash about, hence their ‘jumping’ moniker. …these unwelcome critters are also slightly iridescent, and leave behind granular castings that resemble ground beef….”

Well I’ll be danged.

TargetWalleye.com Highlights

Tip of the Day

Meme of the Day

Bunch of tourneys coming up the next few weeks, so enjoy those awkward conversations at the ramp…. Slooooow, it’s always slow….

Today’s ‘Eye Candy

Sending you off with some #FishFlopFriday action — this time it’s Vince Gouin with a Rainy Lake “ope!”

 

Good luck this weekend if you’re getting out!

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Who is Target Walleye
Target Walleye — walleye during open water and all species during hardwater — is brought to you by Al and Ron Lindner, Jim Kalkofen, Brett McComas and other diehard fish-nuts like you! #fishheads
Brett McComas is the main man for Target Walleye He was discovered in Brainerd, MN after years of wondering how in the heck people break into the fishing biz. He’s in it now, but still can’t answer that question…. Brett is one of those guys who majored in marketing, only because there was no such thing as a “fishing degree” at the time…. Get him at brett@targetwalleye.com 
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