MTPR

walleye

Walleye are invasive species in western Montana.
Eric Engbretson, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (PD).

The Montana Fish and Wildlife Commission approved an emergency order Thursday requiring anglers in Upper, Middle and Lower Thompson lakes to kill any walleye caught in those bodies of water and turn the fish over to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP).

This comes just a week after FWP discovered two non-native female walleyes in Upper Thompson Lake during a routine fishery survey. The fish are thought to be illegally introduced and can severely alter ecosystems.

An illegally introduced walleye found in Montana's Swan Lake in 2015.
Courtesy Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks

Two nonnative walleyes were detected during a routine fishery survey west of Kalispell last week. The species could prove detrimental for a number of lakes in the area, and fishery managers are still deciding how to respond.

An illegally introduced walleye found in Montana's Swan Lake in 2015.
Courtesy Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks

Biologists with Montana Fish Wildlife & Parks have traced the origin of two illegally introduced walleye discovered in Swan Lake.

FWP announced Tuesday that researchers traced the fish back to Lake Helena by looking at their otoliths, or inner ear bones.