The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is jaw tagging more than 3,000 walleye this spring in Saginaw Bay.
If you catch a tagged walleye this year, be sure to report it to help the DNR keep track of the walleye population.
“This information is essential to measuring the health of the population,” said David Fielder, a research biologist from the Alpena Fisheries Research Station. “Besides ensuring the walleye fishery remains stable, we also estimate the population size with the aid of these tag reports.”
The walleye are tagged during the spring spawn on the Tittabawassee River. The fish then return to Saginaw Bay. Some walleye migrate out of the bay into other parts of Lake Huron.
Since 1981, the DNR has jaw tagged more than 100,000 walleye as part of a long-term research project. When an angler reports a fish’s tag number, length, and weight (if known), they receive a detailed history of the fish. They also help researcher track walleye movement, survival, and harvest rates.
There is another reason to report a tagged fish—a chance to receive $100. Around 10 percent of the tags include a reward for reporting the tag.
The tags have a unique ID number and P.O. Box address for reporting, or anglers can make a report online.
Tagged walleye can either be kept or released; reporting the catch is most important.