WALLEYE WAGON IS IN FULL SWING APRIL 2015

Nets have been cranking out fish….and we have a full hatchery, thanks to a lot of hard work by a high quality group of people who care about the fisheries and the overall health of Pewaukee Lake!!!

Nets were acquired from the WDNR to assure we had enough and we had them in time. The early net crew didn’t waste any time getting a “test net” out to check the status of the walleye spawn. Keith Landers volunteered his boat and pursued to lead the group charge as ripe females were appearing as early as April 6th, 2015?!!!

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While lots of “chatter” was flying about between members and other folks about being the only lake in Wisconsin having ripe fish, the crew didn’t slow down for a second besides a storm slamming through…

As the weekend approached the crews were in process of filling the 3rd Jar of eggs.

With Sunday April 12th being a big day ….

2015 Hatchery eggs

Then a slow taper leading to a struggle of one jar a day till April 16th being the last “net day”.

A full hatchery with an estimate of 7,060,000 eggs. This count will go down due to natural processes such as lack of fertilization, or other health related issues. Below is a typical net of Pewaukee fish.

A Net full of quality Pewaukee fish

Here is a tank of nice spawning Pewaukee Walleyes waiting to be milked…

2015 fyke net walleyes

Then there’s the milking action and fertilizing that was done by several of the crew this year – Frank Yurchich, Scott Czechan, Jim Schmitz, Keith Landers and myself…My favorite part is fertilizing…

Fertilizing

Here is what the hatchery to Jars look like to date, we need to run and get some tanks ready for a hatch so more pictures to follow…

Hatchery eggs 04212015

 

Eggs are getting close to “eye-up” as of April 20th, 2015

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Stop in at the hatchery and check out this process….the Last week of April we need all hands on deck as the hatch will be underway!!! WE NEED YOUR HELP!!!!

The Walleye Wagon Operations Start soon

It’s that time of year again folks….time to net some Pewaukee slob females and strip some eggs and get the hatchery cranking again!!

Walleyes in Tankstation #10 set up for WFT5 Million walleye eggs in hatchery jars

The Walleye wagon will be on site by the last weekend in March 2015. Nets are already in our hands and ready to place in the water when the temperature gets a little warmer than 40 degrees. This will typically happen around the second weekend in April, so hang on to your shorts….

Here’s a little summary of last year so you can think about timing:

Date first nets were set: 4/18/2014

Number of nets set: 4

Date last net was pulled: 4/23/2014

Total net nights: 5

Date first eggs were placed in hatchery: 4/19/2014

Date last eggs were placed in hatchery: 4/23/2014

Total estimated eggs in hatchery: 845 o.z.

Date first fry were released: May 12th, 2014

Accumulated TU’s on the date of the first hatch: 321

Estimated hatch  (success rate) : 95%

Date last fry were released: 5/13/2014

Estimated number of fry released: 3-4 Million

Accumulated TU’s date of last release: 354

Total days hatchery operation (first net set to last fry released): 26 days

Total number of fish caught: Males – 103  Females – 47

Total number of fish stripped: Males – 72  Females – 36

A job well done boys and girls….so the question becomes….can we match that this year?!

Get ready to roll them nets out….see you at the April 2nd meeting to discuss who’s on board!!!

 

2nd Annual WFT ICE FISHERY – FEB 21ST, 2015

2015 Ice Fishery FlyerThe 2nd annual WFT Pewaukee Chapter Ice Fishery is here!!

February 21st, 2015 at Curly’s Waterfront 7 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Prizes start with main drawing:

1st Place – 60″ Flat screen Visio Samrt T.V. (Sponsored by Curly from Curly’s Waterfront)

2nd Place – $500 bp Gift card (Sponsored by bp Pantry 41 Pewaukee Lake)

3rd Place – $300 cash or Jiffy pro 4 Propane Ice augerJiffy Pro 4 propane auger

Other Prizes to date:

  • Otter XT 1200 Portable Ice Cabin (Sponsored by Urban Manufacturing and Pewaukee Marina)
  • Another Jiffy Pro 4 Propane powered Ice Auger
  • 20 Guage double barrel shot gun
  • The Booze Wagon (Sponsored by the Pewaukee Chapter donating members)
  • Beer Tower
  • Muskie Lure Package
  • 30 rod and reel combo’s
  • beaver dam tip-up, frabil round tip-up, hole covers (Sponsored by Dick Smiths Bait and Tackle)
  • all kinds of bucket raffles, with all kings of “stuff”

Over $1,000 of Meat Raffles all day long  consisting of 4′ pork loins, prime rib, tenderloins, new York strips, YUMMY!!!

20 gua double barrel

Otter XT1200 Portable shackOtter XT1200 Cabin

Tickets can be bought the day of the event in Curly’s Waterfront.

Fishing ticket and sign up is in the Walleye Wagon right at the launch. Someone will be there just after 6:30 a.m. Fish prizes are for Northern, Bass, Perch, Bluegill, Crappie. Prizes will be 1st, 2nd and 3rd places ($30, $20, $10) with the exception of the northern pike which will be $100. A successful catch and release of the first place northern will result in a double payout ($200). Must be released by a WFT staff member. A holding pond will be prepared by the walleye wagon.

 Beer towerLure board

SEE YOU SATURDAY!!!

WFT Muskie Board

 

Fishery sign in at wagon

 

WFT Golf Package

 

WDNR Fall Fingerling stocking in Pewaukee 2014

The WDNR contracted with Gollons fish farm to stock 35,000 fall fingerling walleyes in Pewaukee Lake the first week of October!

WDNR Walleye stock 2014 This is one of the bigger fall fingerlings but look at the girth of that little guy. Tell me we wont have a year class coming up the pike!

DK and Ben stocking Pewaukee

I think everyone there was nothing but smiles both days. 12,000 or so went to the west launch, 12,000 went in by the Yacht club and I believe approximately 8,000 went in by Smokie’s Muskie Shop (Lakeview Blvd boat launch).

WDNR Gallons stocking eyes at west launch 2014

 Gollon’s trucks dumped in at the west launch the first day. Same day they brought some muskies!

Then they were back the next day stocking at the Yacht club.

Gollons bringing walleyes to Pewaukee

 

A little closer up and you can see the walleyes coming out of the pipe…

Dumping in walleyes 2014

 

4 Million+ Walleye Fry are in the Lake!

The Pewaukee Chapter should be proud of their first year efforts! We successfully released 4+ Million walleye fry into the lake on Mothers day and the day after, how fitting! I did fail to bring the cigars, as they would have been fitting for the situation. The crew felt like Dads and Moms as the coolers loaded with little swimming walleye fry were siphoned to their new home.

Fry release crew Manday May 12 2014

The coolers were full and the team raced out to beat the wild weather circumstances. The fry were released by siphoning them gently to the surface of the lake where the depths were 40-45 feet. This is where they will feed on zooplankton and work their way to the bottom.

Fry release day Monday May 12 2014

The next crew followed the same deep water route and worked between the rainstorms to get the fry in the water before trying to battle another long night of filter problems and pump problems.

Maybe no cigars were being smoked but there were a lot of “high fives” and tall cans of beer that followed the stocking efforts that night!

 

The whole process leading up to this day was an incredible amount of team work and organization. From working with the Walleye’s for Tomorrow Chairman of the Board Mike Arrowood and getting the materials and parts into place, to understanding what needed to happen, to making it all happen. This group of Pewaukee Boys came together like a “band of brothers”. Call the group a bunch of hillbillys, rednecks and fishing fools, but what these guys and gals truly are is a group of people who want to improve the environment that we enjoy and are so passionate about. The groups conservation efforts, improvements to the fisheries and habitat utilizing teamwork is simply becoming contagious.

Go to the Walleye Wagon page and see the tremendous steps, obstical’s and results of this incredible conservation effort. Take the time to think and understand the effort that was made to accomplish the release of these fry, now try to see what the WDNR has to go through to try to do the same for all the lakes in Wisconsin. Think about it the next time you keep your catch and complain that the WDNR needs to stock more fish…Maybe you should “jump on the wagon” and help be part of the solution, not the problem…catch and release my friends and help give back to the waters you take from!

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I think it’s also very important to note how many kids are involved in this Pewaukee Chapter of Walleyes for Tomorrow conservation efforts. Whether you look at the Fish Sticks project or the walleye wagon pictures there is as many kids involved doing the work as adults, very cool. It all starts with the kids, teach them what we are doing and why and that my friends will make the difference in our future.

 

Congratulations to another successful project Pewaukee Chapter!

Tom Koepp – WFT Pewaukee Chapter Chair

 

The Walleye Wagon is Ready To Burst With Frye

It will be “All hands on deck” when these 4.5 million walleye eggs decide to hatch at the same time. These eggs will hatch and all the frye and eggshells will flow out of the hatchery and into our tanks. We will need to watch the flow very carefully 24/7 and make sure the eggshells are constantly cleaned from the filters. If not, the filters will clog and the frye will spill onto the ground. Major loss for all the hard work we’ve put in to date.

See the eggs below that have reached the “eye-up” stage.

Walleye eye-up

Since these eggs were stripped and fertilized within 2 days of each other we will probably see the hatch do the same thing. The eggs are supposed to start hatching based on rise in temperature. This temperature change are called DTU’s (Daily Temperature Units). On May 5th, 2014 we have reached 210 DTU’S. If we do the math based on the law of ratios and averages, we can expect to reach 300 DTU’s this Saturday May 10th, 2014.

Scientist Bob E We are watching pumps, flow, temperatures in and outside, checking eggs for clumping and potential fungus, removing dead eggs, cleaning filters daily to assure we have a successful hatchery in our first year of operation.

I will be putting together a spreadsheet and hanging it in the hatchery so people can write down the times they can volunteer for helping with the hatch of the frye and the cleaning of filters.

To read more about the whole process to date, go to the Walleye Wagon page on the Pewaukee Chapter of Walleyes for Tomorrow’s website.

For more information on becoming a member or Sponsor contact Tom Koepp – Pewaukee Chapter Chairman at (414) 333-9306 or email me at thkoepp@wi.rr.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1st “Fish Sticks” Project in SE Wisconsin

I grabbed some underwater photos of the Fish Sticks project on March 11th, 2015 under the ice. I probably scared the fish away drilling holes as I didn’t have time to drill and come back. But photos were a success and it really looks good down there. The crew should be proud of their hard work. Here are the photo’s:

Fish sticks 2015 FFish sticks 2015 EFish sticks 2015 D

 

 

 

 

 

Fish sticks 2015 CFish sticks 2015 A Fish sticks 2015 B

The Pewaukee Chapter of Walleyes for Tomorrow knocks out the first fish sticks project in SE Wisconsin. The “Woody Structures” provide critical habitat for all species of life in the food chain of a lakes ecosystem. The bottom of the logs can hold thousands of invertebrates feeding on the wood. The small fish feed on the invertebrates and the larger fish on the smaller fish. The wood provides shore protection and habitat above the water for insects, turtles, wood ducks, and birds as well.

 

Morning fish sticks crew

The morning crew move into the project area

Dragging trees to the site

Dragging trees to the site

Fish sticks crew moving first trees in

The crew places the first trees

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For more information on the latest Pewaukee Fish Sticks Project see the JS Online article below.

JS Online Fish Sticks project WFT Pewaukee Chapter