The Mississippi River team conducts research to answer critical questions so that our Fish Management Teams and partners can best manage the fisheries and habitat of the Mississippi River in Iowa.
Walleye and Sauger on the Upper Mississippi River
Walleye and sauger support popular and important fisheries on the Upper Mississippi River bordering Iowa. Small size and high annual mortality rates of sauger and highly variable recruitment in walleye led to the implementation of experimental regulations to improve these fisheries. Evaluation of a 15 inch minimum with a 20-27 inch release slot for walleye has shown an increase of walleye in the 20-27 inch range in pools where the regulation is in effect (Pool 13)versus pools without the regulation (Pool 10). Recommendations include continuing with the slot limit and evaluation of the walleye population as this size class increases.
Mississippi River Northern Pike Investigations
Northern pike provide an important recreational fishery for Upper Mississippi River (UMR) anglers. In order to effectively manage this fishery for this diverse angling group, this study was initiated in 2010 to provide information on northern pike population dynamics, angler opinions, and habitat availability in the UMR. In 2011-12, radio transmitters were surgically implanted into 60 northern pike. These fish will be tracked for the next several years to determine seasonal movements and habitat