Walleye are not the problem in Lake Pend Oreille

| June 30, 2020 1:00 AM

Do not believe the lie that Idaho Fish and Game is telling you about Lake Pend Oreille kokanee and predatory fish. The “boom” in kokanee has nothing to do with predator suppression and everything to do with overstocking of a resource.

From 2011-2020 they are above the 20-year average for abundance of kokanee ages 1-3, according to their article posed on June 8, 2020. Look up the historical stocking records for Lake Pend Oreille. In that same period, they planted 33.5 million kokanee under six inches in length (2011-2017). They have so overstocked the lake that the fish are small, some years too small for angler catch. Now they are touting a 9-inch average size with the potential to gain an inch in size before they spawn. I guess if you compare it to the fact that they were too small to catch the last few year then Idaho Fish and Game can say we are seeing improvement.

They are telling everyone it is because of aggressive walleye suppression. Is it that or is it overstocking? I would venture to guess it is the latter. These are hatched fish and do not account for the natural spawning that is taking place all over the lake. I urge sportsmen and women to look at the data, look up the historical stocking records and make your own informed opinion. Most kokanee fisherman would prefer quality sized fish over buckets full of minnows. Walleye are not the problem in Lake Pend Oreille.

ERIC NAVE

Spirit Lake