April 25, 2009

Rites of Spring

A half million walleye eggs
Hatchery operations are in full swing. The spring run of walleyes have produced their first eggs and river mouths have swelled with gawkers and poachers, trying to get a glimpse of that elusive 30 inch plus fish. Why Walleye?

It's no secret that I don't share the same fervor and ineptitude as other anglers who put Sander vitreus up on a pedestal. Our state fish does nothing for me; they are a weak fighting fish and are marginal as table fare. Their bland flaky meat is likely the reason they are prized by the largely scandinavian populations in Minnesota and the Dakotas. Don't forget, they brought us such fine epicurean delights as lutefisk. Don't load on the pepper either, it's too spicy.

While I fail to understand our state's fascination with this percid, this effectively relieves angling pressure on species that I favor to pursue. In addition, their eggs provide a valuable food source for many game and non-game fish species. So, I whole-heartedly support our State's walleye management program, as long as that brings me empty stretches of river and a low profile. I'll leave you with a pure nugget of genius from a former co-worker.

"If everyone liked the same thing, they'd all want my wife."

-the roughfisher

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