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Dances with Walleye

Game Fish Aquarium?

16 posts in this topic

I hear people talk from time to time about how they have an aquarium with a couple small Walleye in it etc...

Which I think would just be cool.

Not that I want to raise Walleye to eat etc... I just think it would be cool and I'm curious.

I'm just wondering what legalities one would go through to have his own Walleye aquarium, with a handful of small eyes, and some minnows.

(Or am I just a victim of some guys 80 proof leg-pulling session?)

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I've done it with bluegills. I recommend catching a few small fish (2 inches or so) if you're going to keep them in an aquarium of 30 gallons or less. Bigger fish overtax the system and need a much larger aquarium. You can catch small bluegills with a minnow trap baited with crackers. For a couple of 6" bluegills, count on a 50+ gallon tank. Try calling World of Fish or Terre Quatics in the Twin Cities Metro area for more detailed advice. I recall that World of Fish sold gamefish for aquariums, including northern pike.

After all was said and done, I realized that I prefer typical aquarium tropical fish, so I released the bluegills and replaced them.

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To keep walleyes you would have to buy them from a pet store or liscensed fish farm and keep your receit, i beleive the fishing regs allow kids under 16 to keep bass and sunfish they have caught as long as they are under 6 inches in length. Otherwise it is illegal to transport live fish.

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The regs actually say 10 inches. But he's right, a child under 16 can keep 4 fish less than 10 inches for the purpose of an aquarium. I believe you have to catch em with hook and line too.

Adults like us have to buy game fish.

I have a 55 gallon aquarium, in which I have had various fish, including a large mouth, small mouth, blue gill, crappie, bullhead, channel cat, and a walleye.

I really enjoyed the experience and found their feeding techniques very interesting. When I had a blue gill, 2 bass, and a bullhead, I would feed them baitshop crappie minnows once every 10 days, or so, and they would consume 4 dozen in about 5 minutes.

Now I just have a crappie and a bullhead.

The largemouth was a bully, and picked on the other fish, and I believe killed the blue gill.

The channel cat I had jumped out the back of the tank, as did one of my bullheads.

The walleye I had for a short period of time was boring. It was stationary during the day, only feeding at night, and requires colder water than some of the other species. I dont think room temperature water works very well for walleyes.

I loved watching the fish feed though. For the best entertainment, buy yourself a couple bass, or even a pike, or long nose gar. The pike and gar are extremely fast.

You can fill your tank with tap water, but you need to treat it to remove the chlorine. I use "stress coat" and it seems to work fine. Change about 1/4 of your water every 2 months, and keep the filters running and clean occassionally and you'll be fine.

They say not to use bait shop minnows, but I haven't had a problem. Just buy a scoop every other week and your fish will survive. I raised my bass from 2 inches to 10 inches before i released it.

In the early going, crappie minnows were probably too big, I went to the pet store and bought little feeder minnows. They were like 10 cents a piece. Much cheaper to buy in bulk from the bait store.

I once bought a feeder mouse and threw it in the tank, expecting one of the bass to have at it. Believe it or not, after the mouse swam a couple laps around the tank, a bullhead got curious and went up and finished em off.

OH, one other thing that worked well for me. The pet store sells this contraption, that hooks right up to the faucet. It allows you to filter the large debris off the bottom without sucking up rocks (I dont recommend sand in your tank it clogs the filters, go with gravel and rock you'll have better success keeping it clean). Anyway, this device allows you to suck water out, or with a twist of the nossle, fill it back up... and comes with like 20 feet of hose.

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They also count against your limit, so if you have 6 eyes in your tank, you cant keep any for the table.

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one of the pet stores in rochester "petco" i think has all kindes of gamefish for sale, bass,eyes,crappies,bluegills,maybe even a few small pike

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All of the information posted is corect, you would need a license if you kept wild fish, you can get around it with your kids (under 16), or you should keep the receipt from a store, etc (although what are the chances a CO is coming over to check your aquarium?). The one thing I will say, not to pick on anyone, is that you shouldn't release fish into a wild system, regardless if you are re-introducing the fish into where they originally came from. This goes for all pet fish, including native fish (it's in the regs). It's a disease, behavior, competition thing. You might be better off filleting your pet (if you could manage this), giving him to somone else, or making him garden fertilizer once you've decided you don't want him anymore.

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There's a pet store on the north side of Hwy 10 just east of Hwy 101 in Elk River that sold game fish when I was looking into doing the same thing. They had crappie too.

I decided against it when I weighed the cost of setting all that stuff up and buying the minnows to feed the daggone things. Could fund a number of fishing trips with the money instead.

Good luck with your decision - I still think it would be very cool to do but would likely make my bass fever too bad in the winter months... frown.gif

Daze Off

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BTW-my college room mate did this w/ 2 sunnies and a LM bass. The sunnies dominated the bass, even though they were smaller.

Also, we would get minnows occasionally, but we usually just waited for a good rain and collected worms.

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As I type this, I'm watching a LMB swim around with about 3" of walleye tail sticking out its mouth mad.gif

There are a couple of places that sell gamefish, I've bought a few from a shop in Crystal and also one in Apple Valley.

I have a 75 gallon with a few gills, bullhead, channel cat, (used to have a walleyemad.gif), LMB, crappie, Creek Chub, and a couple algae eaters and a Crawfish.

Yes, the intial investment kills you, especially when they get 19.99 for a walleye.

They sure are fun to watch though.

I've also done the feeder mouse trick with the bass....cool stuff.

I've seen Sturgeon on Ebay, but I'm not sure I can keep them legally.

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Quote:

There are a couple of places that sell gamefish, I've bought a few from a shop in Crystal and also one in Apple Valley.


Aquatropics Aquarium Center in Crystal--just around the corner from me.

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Quote:

Quote:

There are a couple of places that sell gamefish, I've bought a few from a shop in Crystal and also one in Apple Valley.


Aquatropics Aquarium Center in Crystal--just around the corner from me.


That's the one.

Great place to buy fish.

The last time I was there they had smallmouth as well. Maybe next time.

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Aquatropics is definitly the place to go, Kevin and his crew will take good care of you.

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you will have to wait till spring for native fish, I can't remember when but aquatropics gets them from the spring ti'll sometime in the fall or winter.

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Quote:

you will have to wait till spring for native fish, I can't remember when but aquatropics gets them from the spring ti'll sometime in the fall or winter.


Yup, I just called aquatropics last night. The lady said all they have in stock right now is bullheads, small sunnies and few perch.

She said when they get their shipment in the spring they will have almost everything.

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In addition to all of the other native species mentioned, I've also seen paddlefish.

I tried largemouth bass once, and they were very aggressive and territorial towards other fish in the tank. I also put 2 4" northerns in there until one day I looked in the tank, and one of the northerns had choked to death from trying to eat the other northern (same size). After these experiences I just decided to stick with tropical fish.

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