They call it a fever and it strikes the strongest of fishermen every spring from April through July during spawning season in the Great Lakes region. The cure is simple – go walleye fishing!
When the walleye spawning ritual is complete, these battered and exhausted fish move to the deepest part of the lake to rest for four to 10 days. After the rest period, the walleyes are extremely hungry, and that’s when they move back to their spawning areas and the early spring action is at its best. As the water temperature rises and the spawn ends, in mid-July and August, the fish start moving into deeper and colder waters.
Photo from Culver’s Walleye.com
Walleye’s delicate meat is white and flaky and no matter how it is prepared, it is delicious. One of the locals’ favorite ways to eat walleye is in a sandwich. A day of fishing would not be complete without a traditional shore lunch featuring freshly caught walleye from the icy waters. Thin fillets are breaded and either deep-fried, grilled, or pan-fried, and served in a fresh French loaf or on a hamburger bun with lettuce, tomato, and tartar sauce. The walleye sandwich is also a favorite at the many fishing lodges, pubs, and restaurants in the Great Lakes region.
The walleye, a member of the perch family, is the most sought-after eating fish in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan. The walleye takes its name from its unusual marble-like eye, which appears transparent in certain light. Because of the eye structure, walleyes are extremely light sensitive. Their large eyes help them easily find their prey.
Anglers enjoy walleye year-round. During the day, these fish often rest on the bottom of the lake or hover in the shade of submerged objects or in the shadows of deep water. They emerge at dusk to feed over shallow weed beds or rocky shoals. I n mid-summer, they often remain near the bottom, even at night. The best fishing times are early evening, early morning, and just after midnight.
Walleye Sandwich Recipe:
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