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Some thoughts on Perch fishing etiquette and other "issues"


Sk8man

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For the past few weeks of perch fishing I and my friends have experienced unbelievable rudeness from fellow perch fishermen and I don't mean young inexperienced guys either. These idiots have either moved right in next to us  with their motors going, or gone to their spots full tilt driving right between us and land ruining any chance of a drift or catching fish for that matter as well as following from place to place.  Pretty unnecessary as well as rude....big lakes with lots of room out there.

 

Another thing is the brazen disregard for the law and greedy "take care of your own butt and f everyone else" attitude including one guy who with his partner actually proudly displayed his cooler full of perch at the launch ramp with about 150 to 200 of them a lot of them little too....unreal....50 limit and they take double that and no DEC guys to do anything about it.

 

I honestly think the limit should be reduced to 25 keepers with a 9 inch minimum size (compatible with the reg on Crappies), that it should be strictly enforced by DEC and that nobody should be allowed to sell them.  They will be the first to complain when the perch are decimated by their own actions. 

Edited by Sk8man
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Nothing brings the greed out like a few cooperating perch. I used to be driven by the catch at any cost motto but with age I've realized to appreciate the expierence much more than the quantity. I don't understand folks taking a ton of dinks or worse yet the old ice fishing method of throwing them on the ice so you don't catch them again.    With the increased fishing pressure from more anglers I worry about the long term effects over harvesting and selling will have. Our state gov't can't seem to wisely manage our money or our resources, lets hope they get a handle on this one before its gone. Speaking of gone, where did all the smallmouth go to in the Finger Lakes? Last region 8 state of the lakes meeting I attended the biologists commented on the lack of funds to allow them to manage cold water species let alone the warm water ones.

Bob

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Wow Les how do you handle guys like that? Law? Turn em in, ask to take a pic of their "awesome" haul and give it to DEC. Without DEC officers patrolling we have little chance but with our new phones maybe it can make a difference. Frustrating sorry man!

Sent from my C771 using Lake Ontario United mobile app

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If they make perch a game fish then I think they can't be sold ?

That's right , been hoping that would happen for a LONG time now......

 

Les when Hoot and I went up to Brewers in Ovid last spring to get our "Derby" tickets she told us what went on out of Samson that winter. Guys going NUTSO and almost having knife fights over " their " spot with other guys...... seems like a great place for the DEC to set up check, and fine...... the least that should be done with this is for the one selling keeping a good record to see if they sell too many in one day.

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I agree completely that they should not be able to sell perch. If the DEC continues to allow it, i can't imagine the population not becoming decimated. What chance do you think there is we can get such selling to be illegal? And what steps can we take to get that done sooner than later?

 

andre

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Dre - I honestly don't know what the specific process would be but probably the quickest easiest thing would be to reclassify them as a "game fish" despite the possible absurdity :)

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The lack of respect has hit the sporting community with a bang. It seems as fishing was the last to get hit with the "me" mentality.

Could go on forever. 

As far as sale of perch, we had legislation drafted at one point to change this but it was shot down. I think it can happen again with support. The one thing we need to keep out of it is Lake Ontario and Erie. That is one reason it was shot down in past. I have no problem drafting a letter to all powers to be to fight this fight again. DEC knows these guys go from lake to lake and when Lake O is rough the head south.

Conservation Council and the New York State FIsh WIldlife Management Board a good start. Many counties have a fish advisory board as well.

 

As for the outrageous behavior, you know the saying "you can't fix", but you can numb it with a 2x4!!!

 Thanks for the topic Les.

D

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The lack of respect has hit the sporting community with a bang. It seems as fishing was the last to get hit with the "me" mentality.

Could go on forever.

As far as sale of perch, we had legislation drafted at one point to change this but it was shot down. I think it can happen again with support. The one thing we need to keep out of it is Lake Ontario and Erie. That is one reason it was shot down in past. I have no problem drafting a letter to all powers to be to fight this fight again. DEC knows these guys go from lake to lake and when Lake O is rough the head south.

Conservation Council and the New York State FIsh WIldlife Management Board a good start. Many counties have a fish advisory board as well.

As for the outrageous behavior, you know the saying "you can't fix", but you can numb it with a 2x4!!!

Thanks for the topic Les.

D

I saw the me factor first hand yesterday when a family came down to the trib I was in and started snagging trout which was their intentions from the beginning... they just didn't see me in the bushes... by the end of the day they had the wife there with a pole in her hand so they could take more fish... I would imagine people with this attitude do the same with perch limits... but just switch lakes... and yep sure enough Ontario was rough so we had guys from Pulaski down here, which I don't mind cause they were doing everything legal. Its the scabs that ruin it for the one a who try to do it legal...

Dec response was they would send some one down... never saw an officer... probably to busy doing deer season... I bet no one eats that amount of perch in a day...

Also, without including all new York water ways, you could easily go to any lake catch them, sell them, and still continue to do the same thing because they are never going to test the fish to see which lake the fish were caught in before purchasing the fish...

Edited by FishingTheFL
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Sale of gamefish is illegal. Gamefish means anything with a size limit. Since perch don't have a size limit (unlike bass, crappie, trout, etc.) you can sell them and it has been this way for many years. I remember reading in one of the outdoor magazines (probly NY Outdoor News) that DEC has proposed to stop sale of any freshwater fish a few times in the past but it gets shot down every time because of all the bullhead and perch dinners up north. Best thing you can do is keep complaining to DEC and elected officials.

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We have some things in the works. As Jerktroller said, perch would need a season, length limit etc..We tried in 2006 but did not succeed. Need to plan careful wording in order for legislator to sign on. When things get set up Sk8man or I will put it out on this forum.

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It takes getting involved and helping the DEC. They are stealing from everyone, that's right...they are stealing from YOU. Each and every one of you. Get a pic, note the time and day, where it happened and any warden worth their salt will snap it up and LOVE the help. Be willing to testify if that is needed. I don't know a lot but I do know that the DEC can't do it themselves, they are few and have limitations (one person, one place at a time). If we do nothing then we condone the activity. Is the DEC perfect, absolutely not, no agency is but each one of us has a part of this earth we love...salmon fishing, perch fishing, trout fishing...whatever it is and unfortunately there are those that exploit our love. It really boils down to two questions: If not us, then who? If not now, when? That's my pitch guys and I may know something about it as well, catching these exploiter is my profession as well but not in NY. Good luck guys and enjoy the outdoors we all love.

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I always thought that the only place in NY State where commercial perch fishing is legal is on Seneca Lake Is it legal elsewhere as well?

Yes it is and people who do it up north are coming to Seneca and will mess up are lake like they did up there.that's one reason no one should post what lake or any details about getting perch

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Billy it is also some of the local folks who do it as well. The unfortunate central thing that is happening with this and our culture in general is GREED. There are a lot of folks out there now that I'm certain had "Doesn't play well with others" on their kindergarten report cards :lol:  It is really too bad that there are so many dishonest and greedy people out there these days pretending to be "sportsmen" and selfishly taking resources away from the environment, and from other people and especially future generations. They seem to be operating under the premise that whatever is mine is mine and whatever is yours is mine too". A big difference in sharing info on perch and crappies etc. versus trout/salmon on here is that when you locate them they are "school fish"  and it is much easier to decimate the population by greedy people.  I for one am done sharing any info publicly about these species because the potential negative effects far outweigh the positives when considering the large scale impact of the Internet and our changing societal values.

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We have the same issues down here and unfortunately we dont have near the quality/quantity of perch in our lakes as you guys do up there.  I can remember as a kid, my grandfather taking us out to fish from shore with his brother in law and his kids and  those guys used to fill the buckets until they were overflowing.  I always used to joke with my cousin that the only reason they were taking us with is because they wanted the extra perch.  At that time the quality and quantity was pretty decent.  Now that I have kids I would like to take them out to catch a few perch and there are very few to be found.  If you do find them they are extremely small.  It also doesnt help that the state stocks musky and stripers every year but none the less, a little conservation throughout the good years would have made a huge difference for my kids.  

 

Thankfully I have some friends that live on a private lake and it has a really good perch population.  We wait till the ice hits and take the kids and our group out to have some fun.  Actually the Walleye fishing has been fantastic over the last few years too.  They (my friend and some other folks) started a stocking club within their home owners association and for the last 5 years or so each member of our group (about 10 of us) has given him 200.00 a year to continue stocking perch/walleye/bass/crappie.  

 

I have yet to start perch fishing in the finger lake but at some point will.  My friend who owns a house on Seneca would like to do the Perch Contest that the Seneca Lake Duck Club does as we like to support that event and the small game hunt they do in the winter.  We usually bring my GSP and his beagles and have a ball.  

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Some of the problem with perch fishing in particular is that it is highly subject to the "herd mentality" so people rather than fishing a multitude of spots or bodies of water "cluster" together whether on the ice or open water based on rumor and/or "secretly" shared information. Despite the legendary nature of Seneca's "jumbos" a number of the other Finger Lakes have them as well but it is a matter of locating them and adhering to good sportsmanship practices to maintain populations of them and most humans are lazy by nature.  I honestly think it is about time that the DEC limits the take to 25 and prohibits their commercial sale, and fishing for them during the spawning period too. I know this would piss off a majority of people reading this but something needs to be done and soon if we are to have any perch fishing for future generations of fishermen. We can't continue to be so short sighted and still have a viable fishery.

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Everyone here is absolutely right. Look what has happened to Henderson Harbor. Perch are almost nonexistent there, yet 4-5 years ago, coolers were filled every day.  There is still NO LIMIT on perch  in Jefferson County, and a NYS DEC Officer told us that that is because there are still 3 commercial gill net captains still licensed in that County. Ridiculous.

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I  believe that there is a proposal in the works to address the issues and it could serve as a "springboard" to initiate action on the part of the DEC but it will require our support and I sincerely hope that the pan fishermen on LOU will be behind it when it materializes. We will need to put pressure on our legislature representatives then too. If the proposal recommendations are incorporated into the existing regulations it may be possible to save some panfish for future generations and I think that is something we could all be happy about and proud of the effort.

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