Guide To Walleye Fishing In New Jersey
Walleye prefer moderately deep lakes with gravel, rock or sandy bottoms. It is found primarily in cold water lakes but has proven to survive in warmer impoundments. It is prized for its great tasting filets. Click here to learn all about walleye fishing.
New Jersey offers exciting walleye fishing opportunities for anglers looking to target this elusive and highly prized species. Known for their excellent taste and challenging nature, walleye can be found in select lakes and rivers throughout the state.
Several lakes in New Jersey are renowned for their walleye populations. Lake Hopatcong, the state's largest lake, is known for its healthy population of walleye. This popular fishing destination provides ample opportunities for anglers to hook into these prized fish. Additionally, Greenwood Lake and Swartswood Lake are known for their walleye populations and attract anglers seeking a thrilling walleye fishing experience.
Walleye can also be found in various rivers and tributaries across the state. The Delaware River, which forms the border between New Jersey and Pennsylvania, is known for its excellent walleye fishing. The Musconetcong River and the Paulins Kill are other notable river systems where anglers can target walleye. These rivers offer diverse habitat and ample forage, making them prime locations for pursuing walleye.
New Jersey has seen impressive walleye catches over the years, with several state records showcasing the trophy potential of these fish. As of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, the state record for walleye in New Jersey stands at over 13 pounds. This record reflects the size and quality of walleye that can be found in the state's waters.
When targeting walleye in New Jersey, anglers often employ techniques such as trolling, casting, or jigging. Walleye are known for their preference for low-light conditions, so early mornings, evenings, and overcast days can be particularly productive. Live bait, such as nightcrawlers or minnows, along with artificial lures like crankbaits and jigs, are popular choices for enticing these fish.
It is important for anglers to familiarize themselves with New Jersey's fishing regulations, including size and bag limits, to ensure sustainable walleye fishing practices. Conservation efforts play a crucial role in maintaining healthy walleye populations for future generations of anglers to enjoy.
Whether fishing in lakes or rivers, targeting walleye in New Jersey promises exciting angling experiences and the chance to reel in trophy-sized fish. With the right techniques, equipment, and knowledge of walleye behavior, anglers can immerse themselves in the thrill of walleye fishing in the Garden State.
In addition to the Delaware River, major lakes offering walleye fishing include Canistear Reservoir, Greenwood Lake, Lake Hopatcong, Merrill Creek Reservoir, Monksville Reservoir and Swartswood Lake. Walleye can also be found in other rivers, streams, small lakes and ponds throughout the state. Many of these waters are open to ice fishing in winter.
Click the images and links above for species details.
Top lures for walleye in New Jersey
Jigs with a variety of trailers and bait work well in virtually any depth water. When walleyes are shallow, spinnerbaits, small crankbaits and rip baits are the often very productive. As they move deeper, spoons are ideal for active walleye. Jigs and ice jigs are very productive when ice fishing. Understanding the seasonal movements of walleyes improves your odds of selecting the right lures for conditions on local waters.
New Jersey State Walleye, Sauger & Saugeye Records
The state record walleye was caught out of the Delaware River.
Fishing For Walleye
New Jersey walleye spawn in spring and when they have the option will choose to migrate from the lake up into feeder streams to spawn. If this option is not available they seek out shallow bars or shoals with clean bottom surfaces near deep water.
This toothy fish will eat virtually anything it can catch and get in its mouth. They prefer small fish and will eat crustaceans, worms and insects. They tend to be somewhat wary and prefer the safety of deeper darker water. Trolling for walleye with deep diving crankbaits, jerkbaits, spinners and live bait provides a way to cover vast areas and locate concentrations of fish. Use of planer boards allows anglers to cover water out both sides of the boat while trolling. Try fishing for walleye from sundown to midnight, particularly during the heat of summer.
Watch this video for walleye tips and tactics.
Also find information about walleye, sauger or saugeye fishing in these states.
Learn the migration patterns of walleye
Walleye become active in spring and begin the spawning process in medium-depth water. As summer arrives they move to deeper, cooler water. In fall walleye migrate into shallower water again and feed aggressively preparing for their move to deeper water where they will spend winter.