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Adk1

Spawning Salmon?

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This season the lakers got hit hard. The 3 seasons prior they were left alone for the most part. And you are right Steve, laker fishing is work but only if you are doing it the right way!

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over the last few years i have caught a number of atlantics from salmon river to oswego on the lake in shallow water.   some big.   i am obsessed now and i target them over all other fish.  iv set a program that has put me on a few ever single year now since i found out it could be done.   i think the fish im targeting were stocked on onieda lake in fish creek by the fishcreek atlantic salmon club and since the water is too warm they migrate on down to lake ontario never to be allowed to return to natal spawnig grounds.  i agree with vince that its a hand and hand relationship among species now and forever.   but i dissagree that there needs no more effort tward atlantic salmon.  in fact i support the native species more than the others but vince has pointed out that that cannot happen.  but since fish creek is stocking lake ontario, dont you think if you put some actual effort in we could put a viable fishery in place?   i refuse to hear that atlatic salmon cannot repopulate.  that is a farse and a copout from having to face a change.   think about it.

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having a self sustaining population of atlantics is not reasonable with the current conditions but neither is a self sustaining population of chinook.  the difference is with chinook you get a higher survial and spawning attempt rate which gives you a promotable fishery.  Atlantics have been stocked for a very long time but the catch rats have remained low likely due in part to the longer time they spend in the streams as juvies.  there is probably some predation by the larger chinooks as well.  interesting in the fingers the atlantics fair better in numbers despite shorter and smaller streams though the stocking is heavier.  This indicates that interspecies predation may be a more signifigant factor than thought in lake O.  however the money for stocking atlantics would dry up quick if there was not he promotable fishery for kings.  In the end as with any biome a diverse range of species will make an overall health imporvement for all species

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Hatchery raised salmon and trout winter over in spring water that is geothermally warmed and hatches the eggs quickly where the fry grow over the winter months. They are fed in the hatchery till they reach a size with good survivability in the lake where the stream raised trout and salmon are nothing but forage for all the predators be they salmon, trout, bass, walleyes, perch, smelt and anything else we have out there. The concern for stream raised salmon is that they have a rough time growing up and regular success for future accountability can not be accepted.

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The Lakers eat gobies. Hence the size increase comes with easy to find, relatively static, bottom dwelling (not suspended) plentiful food. The Sturgeon population and size are supposedly on the slow increase too and there is evidence they love to eat quagga and zebra mussels as well as gobies themselves.

 

Amazing how nature tends to balance itself. The native lake species seem to thrive and rebound eventually and the introduced species eventually struggle or even fail.

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I believe the lakers are bigger due to year class survival more than gobies. If he population gets hammered by fishing pressure, it does not matter how many gobies they eat. What percent of the lake trout population makes it to 20lbs? Not a lot. The higher the population, the more chances you will see big lakers. I have seen a drastic climb in he lake trout population the past three year. The numbers of smaller fish are making it harder to target and be successful finding big lakers. Therefor more lakers survive longer. When the laker population was lower, it was easier to catch bigger lakers. There were fewer small ones around to fish through to get to the old girls.

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i agree in order to get the biggest lakers you have to have a healthy population size and low fishing pressure or increased catch and release pressure will help to increase the size but forage definatly plays a large role as well and gobys have become a new part of that equation.  they have replaced the sculpin for the most part in the ecosystem but there numbers are far higher and by there nature they are easier prey which is part of why there tendancy is to reproduce rapidly.  an easy abundent prey source will serve to help increase the overall size structure of any species that feeds on them readily.  Lake trout are not fast growers so it will take time but provided the numbers stay decent and they are not overfished you will see increases in size possibly dramatic ones.  as an example i say look at smallmouth.  they grow much faster and there are more 4-6 lb fish than ever fishing for them has changed but the numbers and size dont lie.

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