Gentlemen if you did not know there is a proposed reg change to the steelhead limit on LO to lower it to 2 in the open waters. The DEC currently has a comment period on this change for a 45 day period which already commenced last week.
If you would like to read it the info is at http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/115977.html and http://www.dec.ny.gov/regulations/34113.html
If you would like to comment the email address is: [email protected]
In the comment line you mus put: 6 NYCRR Part 10 Section 11-0317-Amendents to Great Lakes sportfishery regulation in 6NYCRR Part 10
This is my input, feel free to use any our all of my comments
I am opposed the changes in this regulation in regards to limiting the possession limit of steelhead and rainbow trout to just 2 on the open waters of Lake Ontario. I believe that this change will do more harm to the populations survival of this species than good. Most steelhead are caught during the warmer months of the summer by the process of trolling baits, when the surface waters reach their highest temperatures and lowest oxygen content. The stress these fish endure during the process of hooking (in colder deeper water) and landing in these conditions, plus the fact the netting and removing of the hook is a process that must be completed out of the water (unlike the streams where the water temperature is lower and oxygen higher when these fish are available, along with the fish never having to be lifted from the water to be released), puts undo stress on this species especially when handling larger fish. Having an overall limit of 3 fish of any species with only 2 being steelhead, even makes the situation more intolerable since at this time of the year Salmon can/may be harvested in the same open lake waters. Anglers will continue to fish in the same area hoping to catch salmon and may/will continue to catch steelhead and have to release them after the exhausting event of landing them, most likely causing a higher mortality rate. The fact that there are multiple derby’s at this time of the year with the lower, limit it may cause anglers to cull already dead smaller fish if they land a large one that may be eligible for prize money, this will be virtually un-enforceable by the econ-officers since when checked the anglers will only have the 2 fish limit per person on board. With the recent cuts in salmon stocking the past few years, their availability could be drastically reduced forcing more anglers to target steelhead in the coming years putting more pressure on the steelhead population. By lowering it to 2 while still having a 3 overall for the combination limit could/will keep anglers catching steelhead and releasing mortally wounded fish, while if it remains at three most anglers will stop fishing when they reach their combination limit. This will be especially true for professional (Charter Captains) fishermen. So in conclusion this regulation change will cause more mortality in the open lake steelhead population than its intended purpose of trying to increase survival.
Forgot to add that anyone can comment on this issue even out of state license holders