Walleye/Sauger difference

Here are pictures of both a walleye and a sauger

How to identify the difference between a walleye and sauger.

Is there a difference? And the answer is yes.

Many fisherman don’t notice the difference at first glance but if you take a closer look you will notice the difference.

The walleye has sharp teeth, forked tail with a round and long body. The dorsal fin has two parts, which consists of the front portion having about twelve to sixteen spines and the back portion having a few short ones. They also have large glassy eyes. Their bellies are generally lighter colored than the body, which can be yellowish, brownish, or olive as well as bluish gray depending on the body of water you are fishing.
The Sauger is identical to the walleye except around the eye is a milky glow. The Sauger has a brassy coloring with dark saddle marking on the back. The belly of the sauger is white. You will tell the different between the walleye and the sauger by looking at the belly and back.The sauger is smaller and more slender than the walleye, seldom exceeding 3 pounds. Its dorsal fin, unlike the walleye’s, is marked by rows of dark spots and lacks the dark blotch at the rear base. The sauger also lacks the white lower tail tip.

8 thoughts on “Walleye/Sauger difference

  1. Boy you guy’s should not be picking on someone that can’t defend themselves.
    I will let Mark know you are picking on him again Gord.

  2. Don’t do that….he won’t feed me!

    Back to the topic at hand…….everyone should know that a sauger counts as a walleye in your limit.

    The deep area between Strawberry Island and Colonels Island is referred to as the “Sauger Hole” by the VBay locals. They used to catch saugers there through the ice. Seems these days though they catch more walleyes (and trout) than they do saugers.

  3. Yea I only caught 1 sauger on Eagle lake a couple of years ago and it was noticable that was for sure.
    Don’t do that….he won’t feed me!
    That will be the least of your worry!!!!

  4. Gord,

    Joe and I call that the “piddler hole”. We have caught dozens of saugers in that area, and one of those piddlers made the difference in the 2007 Walleye Madness tournament. Joe said a piddler never looked so good.


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On behalf of the Boyes Group, I would like to pass on our sincere thanks for hosting the Muskie Madness Week and we thoroughly enjoyed our stay at VBL and had a great time!! This was our 7th year on Eagle Lake and we have stayed at a few other lodges but VBL takes the cake hands down! You can definitely count us in for next year. I’m happy to see you post some of my pics, they turned out well. Thanks again Gord for a wonderful week of fishing and your stellar hospitality, you run a first class operation, we look forward to seeing you next year!

Trevor Benner

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