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One of the few lakes in Iowa which might be classified as typical for the walleye (Stizostedion v. vitreum) is Spirit Lake in Dickinson County. It is the largest lake in the State, covering nearly 6,000 acres. There are numerous rock reefs, points and bars together with many sandy and glacial boulder strewn beach areas. These factors along with relatively clear waters, free of objectionable summer algal blooms, provide a suitable environment for the esteemed walleye. This species is in great demand by sport fishermen and any deviation from fairly good angling succes is viewed with much dismay and concern. Since there are but few suitable walleye lakes in Iowa, the Conservation ·Commission has expended much effort in maintaining a good population and in determining trends of abundance through netting surveys, creel censuses and tagging studies. In 1947, the number of walleyes was estimated at around 30,000 by the tag and recapture (Petersen) method. These data (Rose, 1947), plus a study of annual gill-net catches and survey records indicated a depleted population. The intensity of walleye angling pressure was evidenced by a 28 per cent harvest that year. As a result of that study, modifications of management practices were made to increase the population if possible. Principal changes involved elimination of size limits and the closed seasons on pan fishes and a reduction in daily catch limit on the walleye. Also, rough-fish control was intensified to curtail an expanding carp population.

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Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science





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©1955 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.



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