The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa


April 4, 2014

It's time to catch walleye

CLINTON — Fishing is in season, and one local angler has snagged the fish of a lifetime.

During the peak of walleye season, Dale Merchant and his long-time fishing partner, and uncle, Charlie Sexton, headed out on the morning of March 26 for a day on the river.

What they came home with was something they never anticipated — a 13 pound, 8 ounce, female walleye measuring 29 inches long.

"It was the fish of a lifetime, there's no doubt about that," Merchant said. "We started probably about 9:30 a.m., because that morning was about 23 degrees. We fished our spots and I'm thinking about 10:30 a.m. we caught the big one."

Coming in one pound shy of the state record, a 14 pound, 8 ounce behemoth caught in 1986 by Gloria Eoriatti in the Des Moines River, Merchant's fish joins a relatively short list of near record-breaking walleye catches in Iowa.

According to Iowa Department of Natural Resources Fisheries Biologist Scott Gritters, only about .001 percent of walleye reach the size of Merchant's prize fish.

"We rarely see a fish that big," Gritters said. "Female walleye get bigger than male walleye but I've never seen one that big."

One reason Merchant was able to nab the mammoth female, says Gritters, is because it's nearly spawning season for walleye and the closely related sauger fish. When female sauger and walleye prepare for spawning season, they become more apt to biting because they need extra food and strength for the spawn.

For that reason, walleye are one of the most sought-after fish soon after the river thaws.

"Walleye is the first thing that people go after," Gritters said. "As soon as they can get their boats in, even when the ice is still flowing, that's the first thing that they're after."

Text Only
  • 7-24-14 1B-Photo, Choice 2 Cinderella run ends DUBUQUE — The playoff run was fun while it lasted. Dubuque Hempstead, the No. 1-ranked baseball team in Class 4A entering Wednesday, ended Clinton’s chances at back-to-back appearances in the state tournament in Des Moines. The Mustangs knocked out t

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • 7-24-14 Used Book Sale Prep Finding a (temporary) new home CLINTON — The harsh winter delivered a devastating loss to the Friends of the Library.Now, months later, the Friends have regrouped and are ready to showcase its used books — albeit in a new school building.For several years, the Friends hosted its a

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Man charged with burglarizing cars CLINTON — A homeless Clinton man is currently held in the Clinton county jail on a $2,000 cash bond, on charges related to the Monday morning burglary of parked cars.Austin W. E. Housley, 20, is charged with possession of burglary tools, two counts o

    July 24, 2014

  • LUMBERKINGS Barbosa uses past as motivation CLINTON — Clinton LumberKings outfielder Aaron Barbosa is just like one of the guys, but his path to Clinton is unlike the others.Barbosa was undrafted after playing his college baseball at Northeastern University, but he had a chance to display his

    July 24, 2014

  • 7-24-14 1B-Photo, LumberKings pitcher Homestand starts with a victory CLINTON — Eddie Campbell allowed one run in his sixth quality start of the year Wednesday as Clinton opened a six-game homestand against the best two teams from the Midwest League’s Eastern Division with a 4-2 win against West Michigan at Ashford Uni

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Stewart McCaskill photo McCaskill settles into new role at shoe store CLINTON — An Oklahoma boy at heart, Stewart McCaskill is settling into Clinton and Brown’s Shoe Fit.The 35-year-old has worked with the Brown’s Shoe Fit company for seven years. His brother-in-law, who manages a Brown’s in Colorado, brought Stewart i

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Council backs down CLINTON – By Tuesday’s end, many were content with the Clinton City Council’s decision. Property owners adjacent to the proposed 13th Avenue North and North 14th Street sidewalk sites are happy they won’t be assessed to build the sidewalks; four of s

    July 24, 2014

  • UPDATED: Arbitrator rules in favor of Clinton firefighters

    Gallagher rules in favor of Union's wages and insurance proposals over the city's.

    July 23, 2014

  • 7-23-14 3B-Photo, Clinton baseball Kings feel re-energized (with VIDEOS & PHOTO ALBUM)

    CLINTON -- There’s nothing like a postseason run to get the juices flowing again and jumpstart a baseball season that at times was trying.The atmosphere around the Clinton High School program is upbeat these days. One game away from a second consecut

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • At the pool Summer heat may be temporary (wtih VIDEO)

    CLINTON — Just two days past the mid-point of summer, Clinton recorded its first 90 degree day of the season.Though it's not a very common summer trend in the Clinton area, there have actually been several July months over the years that never even r

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

Clinton Herald Photos

Browse, buy and submit pictures with our photo site.