Return to Easily Identify Walleye   


Stizostedion vitreum

Walleye Family

Freshwater Fish Identification


Common Name(s):
Pike perch, yellow pike
The walleye has a long slender body with a yellow-olive color with a brassy overcast on the sides. The tail fin has a white spot on the bottom edge. The eye is large and cloudy, and there is a dark blotch on the webbing between the last three spines of the first dorsal fin. The mouth is filled with sharp canine teeth. The walleye looks similar to the sauger and saugeye.
Similar Fish:
Sauger, yellow perch
Feeding Habits:
Young walleye feed on plankton and insect larvae for most of the first year. Following this stage the young shift to a diet of small fish. Adults feed mainly on shiners, shad, minnows, and rainbow smelt. When these species are not available they will feed on almost any suitable sized prey.
This wide ranging North American species occurs from the Hudson Bay east to the St. Lawrence river, south to the Gulf coast of Alabama and east to Georgia. In the west it is found in Montana down to Arizona with limited introductions in Washington and Oregon.
Walleye prefer clear to slightly turbid waters. They usually occur in greatest abundance over reefs, shoals of gravel, bedrock, and other firm bottoms.
Typical Size:
Walleye average 2 to 4 pounds and are between 14 and 22 inches in length.
World Record:
25 pounds, 0 ounces (Source - IGFA)