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muskiedreams

Why is Tiger Musky Fishing more productive in Otisco than in Conesus?

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I am not very familiar with Conesus and my knowledge is from reading on the internet but here is my take (info taken off DEC website).

 

Conesus: 3,400 acres stocked with 9,500 8.5" tigers resulting in ~2.79 tigers stocked per acre. Predators of stocked tigers include the same as Otisco plus northern pike, which I believe greatly reduces the chance of the stocked tigers to reach maturity.

 

Otisco: 2,236 acres stocked with 11,000 8.0" tigers resulting in ~4.92 tigers stocked per acre (nearly double that of Conesus). No northern pike predation. I am a shallow water caster so I assume I would be more productive on Otisco rather than Conesus based on the contour maps. With Otisco being 2/3 the size of Conesus with almost double the stocking density, I believe will contact tigers at a higher rate based on numbers alone. I feel that Otisco has been promoted as the trophy tiger lake in NY and therefor sees a lot more fishing pressure, this combined with my thoughts on the size vs stocking densities results in more reported catches.

 

One thing that I think would help all lakes stocked with tigers is to stock them at a larger size. This is one of my personal goals associated with the "CNY Muskie Club" idea since I live 20 minutes from the hatchery and there are numerous lakes around me that are stocked with a few hundred tigers that as far as I have heard, no mature tigers are being caught (possibly nobody targeting them though).

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I was thinking along the same lines as far as stocking. Even if the numbers stocked are less, if they are stocked at a larger size and if we can get anglers to help with stocking to spread them around in protected areas, that might translate to increased survival to adulthood. This might have a larger impact at Conesus than Otisco.

 

I was also wondering if pen raising after they reach a certain size would be a practical alternative. I'm not sure how much work and/or expense would be involved. Maybe bait to feed them could be trapped in the lake. In the case of Conesus, I was wondering if SUNY Geneseo students could make it a project.

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Yes I do think raising to 36 from 30 has helped keep a lot more tigers alive. A ton of low to mid 30s Tigers get caught ice fishing and the past few years they go back into the lake instead of on the ice hoping to cash in a derby or whatever other reason people keep them. Overwhelming majority of the Tigers we catch each year are under 36 on the ice

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315 is spot on....the majority of the tigers that are caught by any means except trolling over deep water are under 36...the change in the limit has made a HUGE difference. Given a chance to mature the tigers move off shore and become pelagic for the most part. If Conesus is still at 30 there's an obvious change to work for.

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I mainly cast shallow and have also seen an increase in tigers over 36" since the change. The number of tigers we have caught between 30"-36" has gone up quite well since the change.

It could be due to the limit change or it could be us improving our skills....not sure which it is or which I prefer it to be but it sure is nice-haha!

Edited by Tigerhunter

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I mainly cast shallow and have also seen an increase in tigers over 36" since the change. The number of tigers we have caught between 30"-36" has gone up quite well since the change.

It could be due to the limit change or it could be us improving our skills....not sure which it is or which I prefer it to be but it sure is nice-haha!

 

I've fished with you and have seen your skills...definitely not that. :mooning:

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Tiger Musky fishing on Conesus is good. I got a ~24 pounder (doing a girth length est.) 44" last year and several between 34" to 38". All very thick bodied fish, more so than pike in general. However they aren't a dime a dozen. I sometimes wonder if they don't fight harder than either of their parents that is the Musky or the pike, they seem to be on steroids. In general Conesus has many more bass than anything other game fish. Then for every say 7 - 8 pike, I get 1 tiger. The nice thing about the tigers is that even though they are not as big as their Musky parent they do provide for trophy angling in Conesus, since they outgrow the pike as a rule.  Tigers close to 30 pounds  have come out of Conesus.

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Thats a pretty good ratio 7-8 pike and get 1 tiger. You're doing something right. Congrats on a nice one last yr. 

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Tiger Musky fishing on Conesus is good. I got a ~24 pounder (doing a girth length est.) 44" last year and several between 34" to 38". All very thick bodied fish, more so than pike in general. However they aren't a dime a dozen. I sometimes wonder if they don't fight harder than either of their parents that is the Musky or the pike, they seem to be on steroids. In general Conesus has many more bass than anything other game fish. Then for every say 7 - 8 pike, I get 1 tiger. The nice thing about the tigers is that even though they are not as big as their Musky parent they do provide for trophy angling in Conesus, since they outgrow the pike as a rule. Tigers close to 30 pounds have come out of Conesus.

That's a nice fish for sure. Managed differently there is no reason to think Conesus wouldnt produce a more catchable population of tigers and more importantly big tigers. The limit has to be raised and stocking density has to be raised if this is ever to happen. I know if last year is any indication, the sky is the limit on Otisco.

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I want to try and spend some time there this year to see if I can get a couple. I can be at the launch in about 45 min. If I hit it in May, maybe I can also get a tiger and a few pike and then a walleye or two for the table.

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That's a nice fish for sure. Managed differently there is no reason to think Conesus wouldnt produce a more catchable population of tigers and more importantly big tigers. The limit has to be raised and stocking density has to be raised if this is ever to happen. I know if last year is any indication, the sky is the limit on Otisco.

 

Actually I've caught a number around 38"  to 40", but that was my 1st fish well over 40" (lost a few). I would have no trouble with a 36" limit vs. the current 30" limit, I view them as a game fish. I think they take a number of them out in the winter.  I have tried a tiger as table fare and they are not as delicate in flavor as are pike anyways.

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Thats a pretty good ratio 7-8 pike and get 1 tiger. You're doing something right. Congrats on a nice one last yr.

Thank you I often have to work for them. Thanks for your service, I'm a vet as well back from the 70's. Ski's of any kind are my favorite fish. I think one differance on Conesus with the Tigers is that I throw slightly larger baits. Like Medussa, Saltwater X-Rap, Savage 4-play.

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NPike

 

My son is in the Army, he gets the glory not me. I haven't been in. I taught him how to fish though....... and hes pretty darn good at fishing and flying Apaches. Thank you for your service and everyone else who has served this great country (Yes it's still great!) 

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Right you are,BP! post-142867-14611154883435_thumb.jpgthis is my oldest on a Mk 48 adcap torpedo. Like he says "say hello to my little friend".

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Ronix is right also...unless somebody puts major time and money on the water AND open posts the trips its hard to say what gets caught. If I didn't post and didn't get esox only posting after he spent a couple days on my boat how many big tigers has anyone heard of out of Otisco. BTW there are a couple other guys that do well that I know that wouldn't share if there life depended on it. Now if we had 50 anglers on each lake doing a diary and fishing every weekend we would have some stats to compare...

Sent from my XT1080 using Lake Ontario United mobile app

Conesus has received ~ 7000 (7 to 8)" fingerlings the last 3 years. From my conversations with the DEC Also the DEC is very satisfied with the pike spawning impoundments to the south of the Lake.

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My guess is that the dec keeps the stocking density down because the pike are there, and therefore catch rates on conesus will be lower for tigers than otisco. Raising the limit will make the fish you do catch in line with quality coming from otisco.

Sent from my LGLS996 using Lake Ontario United mobile app

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Looking forward to try trolling Otisco again this year Justin, hopefully with better luck than last year.  I did very well casting, by my standards, for muskies and 'eyes but could only get smallies while trolling.  39" I think was my biggest last year, hoping to pull one up from the deep-water this year.

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Looking forward to try trolling Otisco again this year Justin, hopefully with better luck than last year.  I did very well casting, by my standards, for muskies and 'eyes but could only get smallies while trolling.  39" I think was my biggest last year, hoping to pull one up from the deep-water this year.

I only spin cast and it seems to be as good as any way to find the bigger fish on Conesus. BTW 39" is a very nice fish that was bigger than my 38" big fish of 2 years ago year. I've only gotten 2 over 40" so they are not caught very often on Conesus at this size. I actually just had one up to the boat that was 40"+ hooked on a 3 1/2 X-Rap fishing for smallies. What a fight my wrist was sore.

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Have you tried trolling? The bigger fish are very difficult to target without trolling as they spend most of their time off shore on bait at a depth that makes casting inefficient.

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For 1 thing Conesus has ~5 "or more" times bass to essox of any kind swimming in it's depths. I caught 7 tigers last year between (44 to 33)" and 8 pike between (37 to 33)" by casting. So I'm pretty satisfied with the essox population in Conesus. Not to mention a number of 6 to 4 pound bass. However I generally have to work for these fish and get skunked from time to time. Sure there are bigger fish in Chautauqua. I do agree many big breeder pike are removed in the later winter busting full of eggs, this is a shame and a slot limit should be but in place to curtail this. But in general I think Conesus is well managed with the 7k+ tiger stocked for the last 5 years (at least) and the well managed pike breeding ponds.

BTW thank you for the suggestion I find trolling to inactive, used to fish for l_trout. Sorry for any repeat just wanted to sum it up for Conesus. It can be a tough lake at times as well and sometime it can be on fire.

Edited by NPike

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You can contact DEC region 8 for possible creel census info? Or help the DEC buy participating in this years upcoming creel census?  

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1)Alewife infestation (plenty of food).

2)  Presence of large northern pike (well known for eating smaller Esox species)

3) Probably by far the most impactful factor is pressure.  Boating, skiing, and fishing pressure are intense on Conesus. 

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