Assessment of the Status of the Sport Fishery for Walleye at North Buck Lake, 1998


Bill Patterson, M. G. Sullivan


To recover or maintain Alberta's walleye fisheries, a new walleye management strategy was implemented in 1996. In 1996, the walleye fishery at North Buck Lake was classified as a stocked walleye fishery and a zero (0) daily bag limit was implemented. In order to monitor the status of the walleye fishery at North Buck Lake, a creel survey was conducted during May to August 1998. Since the last creel survey conducted in 1984, the estimated number of anglers had declined 52% from 11,623 to 5607 anglers. Angler effort declined, by 46% from 13.0 angler-hours / ha to 7.0 angler-hours / ha. One walleye (<38 cm total length (TL)) was reported released in 3239 hours of angling.
The test fishery, in 94 hours of angling, caught 109 pike (1.2 pike / h) and 464 perch (4.9 perch / h).
North Buck Lake is a stocked walleye fishery. Historically, North Buck Lake supported a moderate walleye fishery. No walleye were caught during the 1984 sport fishery survey of North Buck Lake.
A remnant walleye population was left after the unusually high harvests of walleye by the commercial fishery in the mid-1950s.
Based on the criteria used to classify walleye stocks in Alberta, the absence of walleye and the historical information the walleye population classification should be changed from “stocked” to the classification of “collapsed”.

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