North Dakota Game and Fish Department fisheries biologists tagged hundreds of walleyes in two North Dakota waters earlier this spring to determine exploitation and harvest in these popular fisheries.
Walleyes were fitted with jaw tags at Rice Lake, Emmons County, and Antelope Lake, Pierce County, as part of one-year studies in both waters.
Tagging fish for study purposes in North Dakota is not uncommon. For example, Department fisheries biologists are in the third year of a four-year walleye tagging study on Lake Sakakawea to look at such things as natural mortality, aging mortality and fish movements.
Fisheries biologists say it’s imperative walleye anglers report tagged fish from whatever waters they are fishing, no matter if they end up in livewells or back in the lake. Anglers are also encouraged to treat tagged walleye just like they would treat any other fish they might have caught.
If it’s a fish an angler was planning on keeping, then harvest the fish. If it’s a fish an angler was going to release, then do so, but record the tag number and leave the tag on the fish. Tagged fish can be reported on the Department’s website, gf.nd.gov, or call the Game and Fish Department’s main office in Bismarck at 701-328-6300.