Assessment of the Status of the Sport Fishery for Walleye at Beaver Lake, 2000


Bill Patterson


To recover or maintain Alberta's walleye fisheries, a new walleye management strategy was
implemented in 1996. In 1996, the walleye fishery at Beaver Lake was classified as vulnerable and a 50cm (maximum total length) size limit on walleye was implemented in the sport fishery. In order to assess the status of the walleye fishery at Beaver Lake, a creel survey was conducted during May to August 2000. During the 2000 survey, the number of anglers utilizing the creel site was 1278. The estimated number of anglers was 7,770. Angling pressure was 7.3 angler-hours / hectare. This is a 27% decrease in angling pressure from 10.0 angler-hours / ha in 1998.

The estimated harvest of legal-size walleye was 267. The catch rate on legal-size walleye (>50
cm max TL) has increased, though not appreciably, from 0.010 walleye kept / hour in 1998 to 0.011 in 2000. The reported release rate for sublegal-size walleye was 0.775 fish / hr. Since the 1998 survey, the estimated release rate for sub-legal walleye has decreased 74% from 1.36 fish / hour to 0.348 fish /hour in 2000.

The estimated total catch rate was 0.361 (0.011 + 0.348).
Based on the criteria used to classify walleye stocks in Alberta, the walleye fishery at Beaver
Lake is vulnerable.

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