Anxious anglers anticipating the mild weather ahead this spring can kick-off the fishing season with a trip to the waters of north Georgia to pursue walleye. According to Georgia Department of Natural Resources' Wildlife Resources Division (WRD), once water temperatures reach 50 degrees, annual walleye spawning
begins, making mid-to-late March the prime time for targeting walleye in
Georgia. For the past seven years, the Summerville, Burton and Walton WRD hatcheries staff have made great strides in their efforts to increase walleye stocking numbers, resulting in more concentrated walleye fishing opportunities.
"WRD has stocked walleye in several north Georgia reservoirs over the
past few years and anglers can now enjoy the fruits of those labors,"
says WRD Fisheries Biologist Anthony Rabern. "For bank anglers, shoal
areas at the headwaters of lakes Rabun, Hartwell, Seed and Yonah provide excellent shoreline fishing opportunities. For boating anglers, lakes Tugalo, Hartwell, Burton, Blue Ridge and Carters are all good bets."
Golden brown in hue with a white belly, walleye have distinct glassy, marble-like eyes and long, sharp canine-like teeth. The current state
record, caught on Richard B. Russell Lake in 1995, weighed 11 lbs. 6 oz. Typical weights range from 2-4 lbs. but a few walleye caught in stocked reservoirs over the past few years have tipped the scales weighing in at
During the day, walleye retreat to deep water downstream of rocky, shallow areas where they spawn, so WRD personnel recommend trolling Shad
Raps or live nightcrawlers near the bottom. In the evening, they shift
upstream, so floating Rapalas or curly-tailed grubs should be most
effective for nighttime fishing.
For anglers who happen to miss the walleye spawning run, there are
still excellent fishing opportunities in April. April walleye anglers should try trolling Shad Raps and nightcrawlers in 10 feet of water in the upper reaches of lakes Rabun, Seed, Tugalo, Yonah and even Hartwell.
To download the brochure, Walleye Fishing in Georgia or for more
information on walleye fishing and WRD stocking efforts, visit
www.gofishgeorgia.com or contact the nearest WRD fisheries management