Save Our Native Species Inc.
S.O.N.S. of Lake Erie Fishing Club
(A 501 C (3) not for profit organization)





SON'S. Stuff


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Contact Information:
Jerry Skrypzak

Vice President
Ed Kissell

Don Tombaugh

John Krupinski

Mail: PO Box 3605
Erie, Pennsylvania 16508

Phone/Fax: 814-453-2270


Hatchery operations 2022-23

The SONS of Lake Erie Fish Hatchery opened in 20022 with a new name "The Robert A. Zawadzki Fish Hatchery in recognition of his dedication and hard work organizing designing, building and managing the operations of the hatchery for over 37 years. During those 37 years millions of walleye and perch along with thousands of steelhead and brown trout were stocked into Presque Isle Bay

In late 2021 the hatchery committee voted to dedicate the hatchery to SONS Director and founding member Bob Zawadzki .

During the summer of 2022 more updates to the SONS of Lake Erie Hatchery in preparation for the 2022-23 season. The inside of all of the tanks were repainted with a non toxic protective paint. Repairs to rhe plumbing system were made and other general maintenance projects were accomplished.
Brown Trout Arrive

On November 10, 2022 a technician from the PFBCs Linesville, PA hatchery delivered 609 brown trout to our hatchery. The SONS hatchery committee including Chairman Jack Bock, Joe Springer, Don Tombaugh  Ron Morrow, John Krupinski and Bob Zawadzki as well as volunteers Rich Brine, Chuck Miller, Tom Nichols, Dave Mikeska and Joe Stahon were on hand to help transfer the fish into the hatchery. The fish were about 6 inches long and should be close to 10 inches when they will be stocked this spring. Until then the volunteers will be busy feeding and caring for the trout while getting ready for the walleye eggs in April.

Brown Trout Stocked

Phase I of the 2022-23 hatchery seasons at the SONS of Lake Erie Fish Hatchery located at the foot of Chestnut St. on Presque Isle Bay in Erie was completed on March 29, 2023 when the hatchery crew and volunteers planted 450, 9 to 10 inch brown trout into the Bay. on November 17, 2022609 5" long brown trout fry were brought to the SONS hatchery from the PFBC facility in Linesville, PA. They were fed and cared for by daily visits from volunteers since then. Their care and feeding prepared them for stocking.

Walleye eggs arrived, hatched and were stocked

No rest for the wicked they say but after our crew finished Phase I of the 2022-23 season when they stocked the brown trout on March 29, 2023, they had to ready the facility for the arrival of our allotment of walleye eggs.

Phase II of the 2022-23 hatchery season  began on Wednesday April 5th when our allotment of 1million 700 thousand walleye eggs were brought from PFBCs Linesville hatchery. The fertilized eggs are placed into heavy plastic bags that are sealed and a shot of oxygen is injected. They were then transferred into our hatching jars.

The eggs normally take about 21 days to hatch however this year the eggs were fertilized many days before they were picked up at Linesville and began hatching in 4 days. The hatch was completed by April 11, way too early due to the warmer intake temperatures. With the potential of higher temperatures during the week of April 10 it was necessary to stock the walleye fry as soon as possible. Approx. 500,000 walleye fry survived and they were stocked on April 13th. The hatchery tanks were cleaned and the system was shut down ending our season. We would like to thank our Hatchery Manager, Jack Bock and our permanent hatchery crew including Joe Springer, Don Tombaugh, Ron Morrow, John Krupinski, Bob Zawadzki and all our other volunteers for their dedicated work


Above: The walleye eggs hatched and the fry were piped into holding ranks then carefully removed for stocking on April 13th. TV news cameras reported the event.