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  #1  
Old 04-07-2001, 07:15 PM
TeeDub TeeDub is offline
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Default Walleye sex?

No, it's not a kinky post!

How can you determine the sex of a Walleye, short of cutting it open? I know this has been discussed here before, but I'm darned if I can remember. Have patience.... I'm old!

Keyhole shaped vent? Wide part towards the tail is a male? I've been having a discussion with a friend over this and haven't been able to find any reference on the web. Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 04-08-2001, 05:51 AM
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Backwater Eddy Backwater Eddy is offline
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Default RE: Walleye sex?

The pare shaped is the female, mails are more wedge shaped.

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  #3  
Old 04-08-2001, 10:30 AM
Stezostedion vitreum man
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Default RE: Walleye sex?

TeeDub,

Generally speaking, the answer to that question is no (sorry Backwater Eddy). Some maintain that you can tell the sex by the shape of the vent (urogenital pore), however, these can vary in shape amongest both male and female. If you put two walleyes, side by side, one male, one female, say weighing two pounds apiece, there is no way of telling their gender. There is no distinguishing external characteristics between the two.

However, during spawning season, as most of us know, you probably can tell the difference. The females will have a distended stomach due to all the eggs they are carrying (if not already spawned). Their vent may look red and sore due to the stress of spawning. By rubbing their stomach, eggs will come out, by the way, females carry eggs in them year around, just not as many. The males when squeezed, on the other hand, will produce milt which can easily be distinguished from the eggs.

The size of the fish may also be an indicator of its sex, as we all know the female walleye will become much larger than the male. In Northern waters (which are colder and affect the rate of growth of the walleye) the maximum average (notice I said average) size of the male will be about 3 lbs. That is not to say, that they will not reach 4 lbs, or even in rare instances up to five pounds. Much of course depends upon the forage that they have available to them in a given lake. Anything over 5 lbs, it is a pretty safe bet that it is a female (but not always). Going even higher, a 10 lb walleye, if you are lucky (or good enough) to catch one, will always be a female, since males just don't get that big. This is the way nature has genetically programed the walleye.

The surest way of determing the sex of your fish is to cut them open. If there is a egg sac present, it is a female, if a milt sac is present, it is a male. Hope this answers your question.

Remember to keep your eyes open and your feet dry.

S.v.m

















In certain


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Old 04-08-2001, 11:15 AM
WAeyes WAeyes is offline
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Default RE: Walleye sex?

I thought I could tell by the stomach size, but I caught a couple this weekend that really tricked me. One had an enormous stomach for a 23" fish, obvious female. The other fish was 22" and had a much smaller stomach, very male like shape. As I cleaned the fish I soon discovered the fish I was so sure was a male, was actually a female. Neither fish appeared to have spawned at all yet, but were very ready. Maybe it is my imagination, but in the fall I notice a smaller body with a larger head on the males and on the females, a larger body with a smaller head. I could be wrong, but I usually can guess its gender pretty well by looking at the head/body size relation. Maybe someone else can verify some more info on this.
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Old 04-08-2001, 11:52 AM
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Backwater Eddy Backwater Eddy is offline
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Default RE: Walleye sex?

[font size="1" color="#FF0000"]LAST EDITED ON Apr-08-01 AT 02:04PM (CST)[/font][p]
It was a fishery biologist that showed me this while stripping fish.

But hay, I am prone to be forgetful and confused?

Is this ID method more acurate in Pike?

Backwater Eddy

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Old 04-08-2001, 12:34 PM
Yer Mt. Buddy
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Default RE: Walleye sex?

Eddy... on Pike, if the arm pits are shaved..it is MOST LIKELY a female....no guarantees these days, however.


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  #7  
Old 04-08-2001, 01:00 PM
Stezostedion vitreum man
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Default RE: Walleye sex?

Waeyes,

Not to be argumentative, but your statement " but I ususally can guess its gender pretty well", does this mean that you can tell every time, or every other time, or just some of the time? Rememember, you have a fifty-fify chance of your " guess " being correct. I wish I could get those odds on the Powerball.

Backwater Eddy,

The fisheries biologist you mentioned, was this someone just working for the DNR, or was he educated in the study and identification of fish? Ichthyologists (those who specialize in the study of fish) are of the general consensus that the sex of walleyes cannot be identified by external characteristics alone. When stripping walleyes, most of the time (not all the time) it is easy to identify the males (smaller) from females (usually larger). Have you ever observed these people stripping walleyes, taking them out of their separate holding pens( male, female) and then saying oops, this one is a female (or male), I have, very easy to misidentify them even under even somewhat controlled conditions during the spawn.

With that said, remember gentlemen, we are having this discussion in the name of science (fishing?). Have a good day.

S.v.m
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  #8  
Old 04-08-2001, 04:11 PM
dan(or)
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Default RE: Walleye sex?

SVM,

I also believed without question that almost all walleyes over 4 -5 pounds were male. However, a few years on the Columbia River has thrown that concept out the window. I have seen many fish over that weight and well over 24" to be male. They grow very large fish out here.

While on the Mississippi, I would have agreed with you. But first hand in the boat milting fish 28-35 long has made me alter my Midwest concepts.

I think it is relative to the fishery; size helps but is by no way a good rule.

dan

Out in Oregon Land where there are 4-6000 spring Chinook headed upstream daily and the ODFW still want to eradicate the walleye!

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  #9  
Old 04-08-2001, 04:50 PM
Stezostedion vitreum man
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Default RE: Walleye sex?

Dan (Or)

What you say is true, there is an exception to every rule. I was referring to walleyes of the Canadaian Shield. Here the walleyes grow slower and do not get as big, but live longer, because of the cold water conditions. Areas like Minnesota and Canada, that have extreme weather conditions, are unlike the lakes found in the southern part of the U.S. and areas of the Columbia River, where walleyes grow faster, get bigger, but do not live as long. Since relatively warm water conditions prevail most of the year, these fish keep growing, and at a faster rate, for most of the season. Did you ever notice that the largest walleyes in the U.S. (15lbs and up) are mostly caught from these areas?

As I mentioned in one of my other posts, another very important variable is the type of forage that is available to them. Genetics, also plays a very important part in the growth and ultimate size of said walleye. Another overlooked variable is the amount of fishing pressure on a given body of water. If I understand correctly, walleye is not the most sought after game fish in your area (mostly salmon?), therefore not as many fish taken day after day.

Like I've mentioned above, when talking in generalities, someone can always point out the exception to the rule. There are definitely regional differences when it comes to that great predator, the walleye. Thanks for pointing our these differences.

S.v.m
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  #10  
Old 04-08-2001, 04:50 PM
WAeyes WAeyes is offline
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Default RE: Walleye sex?

SVM, in response to your question about what the word usually means. Some of the time...nope. Every other time...nope. Every time...nope. To me, usually means most of the time. Somewhere inbetween all the time and every other time, closer to all the time. This is the best I can do with my 6th grade education and not having a dictionary handy. I am glad my job doesn't require me to be perfect, I would fail.
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