(Above) Department of Natural Resources staff have been encouraged by the numbers and quality of fish captured during the annual netting process last week. A good number of large walleyes, like this 29-incher, were brought in and later released. A Musky measuring over 48-inches was also in the DNR tanks.-Submitted photo.
The Department of Natural Resources fish hatchery at Clear Lake has been a busy place lately, as crews have been conducting their annual spring netting operation.
The late night, annual walleye collection started April 13 at Clear Lake. Crews with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources Fisheries Bureau set gillnets at night at three lake locations looking for walleyes ready to spawn.
Hatcheries then operate around the clock as workers bring in the nightly haul well past midnight. The eggs are removed from the walleyes in the morning and the fish are returned to the lake where they were caught to make room for the next night’s catch.
The catch in Clear Lake included some beauties, such as a 29-inch walleye which was estimated to top 11-pounds, as well as a 48 1/4 inch musky.
It appears as though the fish got through the winter just fine — probably better than a lot of people!