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Bait Fuel

By Louie Stout

Pine and Stone Lake should see quite a few keeper walleye within a couple of years.

Indiana DNR District Fisheries Biologist Tom Bacula did a survey of the two LaPorte County lakes last fall to evaluate the success of lake association and DNR stockings. Indiana had a surplus of walleye fingerlings in 2021 and 2022 and put them in the two lakes last year.

The fish stocked earlier in the year ranged from 5 to 8 inches in length – a good size for excellent survival.

Bacula said he and his crew saw enough of the Indiana fish for the stocking to be considered successful.

“The growth rate was decent,” he said. “There should be legal fish from the private stocking and ours near the end of this summer and next summer.”

Of course, there are still remnants in the lake of fish stocked periodically by the lake association and DNR since 2016.

Bacula believes the two lakes have good potential for providing a good walleye fishery in the future.

“I am really excited to see how this fishery responds,” he said. “It’s got good habitat for walleye with vegetation, good drop-offs and tons of perch and shiners (for them to eat).”

As a side note, Bacula saw huge numbers of 8-inch-plus bluegills and redear.

“We saw them shallow in October when the water was 56 degrees, and went back November 2 and still saw them shallow,” Bacula said. “We couldn’t keep track of all the big bluegill we saw in that shallow water that time of year.”