It’s been a very successful year for growing walleye.
The Garrison Dam National Fish Hatchery has had an unusually high number of walleye eggs hatch.
That means almost every one of 64 holding ponds at the hatchery is filling up with close to nine million walleye fingerlings that will eventually be stocked into lakes in North Dakota.
Those ponds are fortified with alfalfa to promote plankton growth that provide food for the tiny fish.
In addition, biologist Jerry Tishmack says the walleye love the bugs that have been around in great numbers this year.
(Jerry Tishmack, Fisheries Biologist) “If anybody has noticed there’s been plenty of midges flying around this spring and the midge is a great food for our walleye here in the ponds. There’s nothing that says we won’t meet that 8.6 million walleye. I’m expecting to exceed that actually.”
Along with the 8.6-million walleye, the hatchery has already delivered 1.7-million northern pike and hundreds of thousands of other fish varieties to lakes around the state this spring.