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Wildlife researchers want to know what's killing thousands of walleye in Lake Erie that have been washing up on beaches along its western shore. It's a big concern for anglers who come from across the Midwest and beyond to catch the lake's most popular sport fish. The best guess is that the die-off can be blamed on natural causes stemming from the stress of spawning and the cold, stormy spring, said Roger Knight, Lake Erie fisheries program manager for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.
Ohio Department of Natural Resources biologist Roger Knight says it looks like the worst might be over. He thinks the walleye might be dying from the stresses of spawning combined with all of the cold, stormy weather this spring. Knight also says the fish have a greater risk of getting sick from natural diseases after spawning. The walleye is Lake Erie's most popular sport fish and draws anglers from across the Midwest and beyond. Knight says he doubts the die-off will have any lingering effect on the lake's walleye population.