Fishing Quetico and the Boundary Waters
Handling the Fish you catch.
Walleye are underrated for their ability to inflict injury.
They have teeth, dorsal spines, and razor sharp edges on their gills.
It's these gill edges that are the most dangerous and cause the most
injuries. Be very careful as you reach for a walleye that flares its
gills. The best way I've found to handle walleyes up to about 22"
is to get them alongside the canoe and grab them firmly across the back
of the head so that your hand closes off the gills - so they can't be
flared. Once you accomplish this, lift the fish out of the water and
turn it upside down while paying attention to and avoiding the spines
on the dorsal fin. In this position the fish experiences a moment of
disorientation and calm for several seconds that will allow you to get
the hooks out and then on a stringer if you like. Don't discount the
little ones; their gills are the sharpest. If you do catch a really
large one, handle it the same as a trophy pike.
Fish | Bass | Northern
Pike| Walleyes | Lake