Walleye (Sander vitreus) populations in Wisconsin are near the center of their geographical range and support valuable fisheries. The role of seasonal temperature and precipitation in Walleye recruitment was examined using regression tree analysis. Climatological variables were estimated at the 8 km2 scale and Walleye recruitment was estimated based on 298 individual electrofishing surveys. Estimated changes in Walleye recruitment between 1950 and 2006 were examined based on changes in explanatory climatological variables. Spring precipitation and summer maximum temperature were significant predictors of age-0 Walleye density and mean estimated changes in these variables between 1950 and 2006 were used to estimate changes in Walleye recruitment. The model predicted a small overall increase in Walleye recruitment and provides insight into the direct role of climatological variables in Walleye recruitment. However, given the low explanatory power (R2 = 0.103), it is likely that historic climatological changes have had a limited effect on recruitment levels.

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