For inland lake walleye anglers the year-end news is something of an early Christmas present.
Both the Ohio Division of Wildlife and the Pennsylvania Boat and Fish Commission are jointly reporting another good survival rate for young-of-the-year walleye. Make that three years in a row, too.
What's more, says biologists with both agencies, these three back-to-back-to-back incidents represent the best first-year survival rates since 2000.
Boiled down this will translate into anglers encountering by next spring the entire stock of 2008 meeting the lake's minimum length limit of 15 inches. And the 2009 hatch will reach this all-important threshold by next summer while the fishes from the 2010 hatch will reach legal size by mid-summer, 2012.
All of which could see a transfer of angling pressure from nearby Mosquito Creek Reservoir and back to Pymatuning, a lake some walleye fishermen had given up as a lost cause.
- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn