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few questions about what has happened to keuka Lake


Lip Rippers

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I'm thinking that this winter's fishing may have done something to dent the population? I know that we had numerous trips where each guy caught dozens of fish, and keeping a limit was trivial. It seems like others had similar results, so I bet there was a decent overall take during February/March. The biggest fish, though, was only in the 6 lb range.

 

It will be interesting to see what happens when the summer temps set up.

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A number of things are going through my mind right now in sorting out the "puzzle". Keuka used to give up numbers of large lakers (especially jerking copper) even in closer than Seneca and Canandaigua during early summer (for whatever reason) when the fish in the other two lakes had moved out deeper as well as the bait. There has always been a somewhat different "pattern" there. There have always been large areas out there when using Seth Green rigs where no marks occurred and fish were dispersed but tightly clustered together in "pockets" and in the old days night fishing was the way to catch larger numbers and sizes of fish. In my recollection daytime fishing has always been more "hit and miss" there during this time of the year. It sounds as though there are some strong year classes of smaller fish in the lake recently and often smaller fish hang together more than mature lakers that seem to roam and have a more diverse diet (small panfish and perch,stonecats etc. in addition to the alewives and the now pretty much non-existant smelt in many places) so catching big fish may not entail the same techniques or they may not be clumped together in defined areas.  There is no doubt that the introduction of invasive species has upset many of the traditional patterns and relationships of the fish in the Finger Lakes but also thrown into the equation is the observation that anglers have become much more productive and efficient in using electronics, techniques and equipment to harvest the fish and as the fish come out of there they aren't really "replaced" as if by magic. The younger stocked fish may be more vulnerable now in finding adequate food, reproduction rates may be negatively impacted by encrusted traditional spawning beds with zebras and quaggas or silting from high flow input conditions. I think it may take a few seasons to really get more of a handle on things rather than making conclusions based on such limited time frames.

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Interest take on this guys, thanks.

 

Now in just what I have seen and read as to Seneca that could also apply here......

increase natural reproduction because of  zebras and quaggas  beds on top of the silting from high flow input from the 70's and to date....

 

when I was chasing laketrout hard on Seneca it seemed like they were in 3 different temp ranges ( based on the lake being set-up with a good thermalcline ) ..... way out of temp early on with most of these fish without fin clips......in the normal temp range hugging the bottom ( most were clipped fin fish ) .... and out in no-mans land  ....... and this is just my opinion based on what I think I have seen and also read.... take it with a grain of salt.  

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Live on the lake for 7 years now. For the first time last week, caught a rainbow 2 days in a row. Released of course, both of them. Hoping the funding does not Go away, as DEC is suggesting. Up the Lakers limit, try cage stocking, as done on the big O, and watch the silver fish come back in a few years time. I have mentioned cage stocking before, by never received any further thoughts. Would that be a good alternative?

Sent from my LG-D800 using Lake Ontario United mobile app

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Like to throw my 2 cents in here. I live 4 miles from Keuka and fish it a lot. Strictly jigging on light tackle and have a blast. Also love grilled Keuka lakers. I normally keep my limit and either grill some or give them away. People I give them to are always looking for more. 

But here is my point. I am now a first time grandfather to a 1 year old (cute as a button I might add). Little Paige and my daughter are coming here from Oregon for the month of July. I would love to serve my daughter some freshly caught Keuka lake trout but I definitely will not because of the DDT related fish advisory on Keuka. I also have Mennonite neighbors that love my freshly caught lake trout but I will only give them lakers from Seneca because the Mennonite families have children under 15 years of age. I know DDT is very persistent when it is found in the environment but it has been banned in the Finger Lakes watersheds since 1965. 

I would hope the DEC and the NYS health department are giving a high priority to testing Keuka lake trout so that someday soon this advisory can be dropped. After the advisory is dropped, more lakers would be taken home and become prime table fare thus cutting down on the surplus population.

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I agree with Sk8man about how the lakers are in pockets more than other fish. With the Seth Green handline rigs we fished the Bluff, Snug Harbor, or just out from Clark's boat livery and would almost always find the lakers in these spots after June right into October.  The fish were there and 10 and 12 puonders were not all that uncommon. Most were in the 5-7 lb. range. They were all down deep near the bottom of course and quite often rainbow would hit up high as they were chasing the sawbellies under the lights. We'd even get a brownie once in a while. The lakers seemed to be far and few though in other areas of the lake back then and drifting on calm nights proved that.

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Fishing is still the same with plenty of small lake trout. Its a good spring and fall lake to fish. Party boats dominate the lake during the summer months. Heavy boat traffic slows down the fishing. What changed the most is the fisherman. 40 years ago this lake was very popular fishing at night. Today I don’t here much night fishing done anymore. Its still a good lake to fish at night but you have to know it if your going to be successful with it. Don t count out the pan fishing here. Its an excellent perch lake. This lake is much easier to fish for perch than Seneca. Where can you go on a nice fall day with beautiful foliage with a small boat and fish.   

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