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Because of the nature of the breed, being that they are slow growing, any musky fishery can suffer from an adverse event. I think it is more important for us to promote proper CPR but also not bash someone if they do it wrong or for keeping a fish within the law. You will never change them by yelling at them.

 

It is also possible that several year classes can suffer from event or a string of less than ideal growing seasons. Since the DEC does not do seining or trap netting there very often, all of you who care about the fishery and fish there at least once per year should consider helping them out with data collection by participating in their yearly diary study if you are not already participating. This not only helps them with data that can be used to better assess the health of the fishery, it also helps them to justify with Albany that the investment in the lake(s) is worthwhile.

 

This is also true with all fisheries in the state and all species of fish. This information can not only be used to help monitor the health of the fisheries in the state but also help to determine where and how resources could be best utilized and create the best return for the state and fishing opportunities for residents.

 

It would be nice if the state could come up with a statewide diary study that would work. I have seen the subject come up in the past but I think the biggest concern that they have is making sure the data is accurate. I can understand the concern there. One thing we can do here on the LOU community is to help promote and expand the Anger Diary Study program here and through the various clubs and organization that we participate in. It must be done in such a way so that those who participate will be diligent in documenting every one of their fishing trips.

 

There are diary studies being conducted on many waters by regional DEC offices. I have diaries for three fisheries to fill out. I could add at least two more but I may only visit each of these fisheries once or maybe not at all in a season. As it is, there is one that I sent back last year with no new entries and it will be the same this year. But I could conceivably fish there two or three times next year. Sometimes I wonder if it makes sense to fill out a diary if I only fished there once in a season. I can say that I would much rather have one diary to fill out where I can enter all my fishing trips for the season. I just wonder if it could be done and still keep the data accurate somehow. Maybe it could be done if we can present a practical plan to the DEC.

 

I don't know if there is a way to conduct a poll here on LOU but I would be curious to find out if more anglers would participate in an angler diary study and diligently provide accurate data if they could do it all in one diary.

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I've been doing the diaries for trout and salmon since the 70's and a few years ago I suggested to  the DEC folks that they should put a diary cooperators website up and let us record the data on it after the fishing session and have a special password for each cooperator. They said they weren't prepared to do that without specifying why.

Edited by Sk8man
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Perhaps the poor terrible fisherman could use a helping hand? I learned because people were generous enough to share their time and techniques with me.   Still I often have to work for my fish.

 

 I’m no expert at purebred musky’s, but very large fish are to be had at Chautauqua as well as perch.  Trout, pickerel and bass at Hemlock. Pike and bass with the odd tiger or walleye at Conesus.  

 

As for Fishing Diary I’ve been keeping them on Conesus for the DEC region 8 for years. They do provide a nice end of year wrap-up.

 

Catch and release is critical, particularly for the larger fish. I love seeing a jumbo esox swim away. Not that I get that many real jumbo’s.

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Tough to burn out a lake when they stock 4200 a year and they reproduce on top of it..

Just a thought to keep in mind: successful natural reproduction on that lake (or any body of water in NYS they are stocked in) is negligible at best. And, of the 4200 that are stocked, very few survive to reach sub-adulthood. It's not an infinite resource that is capable of replenishing itself year to year.

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I think the first paragraph that Steve wrote, and the first comment John made say it all.

The best way to protect the fishery is propper release technics and educating instead of bashing the guys that don't do it how we all know it should be done.

I think if everyone thinks back to the beginning of their muskie days they will remember things they also may have done wrong. Chances are someone put the idea of doing it right into their head and that's what started them on the correct path to protect the fisheries they love. That is usually all it takes to change an anglers technic for the better, a friendly hint of how to do what's best for the fish. The power off suggestion will go much farther than the other ways in my opinion.

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Just a thought to keep in mind: successful natural reproduction on that lake (or any body of water in NYS they are stocked in) is negligible at best. And, of the 4200 that are stocked, very few survive to reach sub-adulthood. It's not an infinite resource that is capable of replenishing itself year to year.

Thanks for stating this Mike. I wish I could find some estimates on stocking size, quantities and survival rates to size ranges. I know I have seen such studies but I am sure it can only be so accurate and vary widely depending on the body of water and it's unique circumstances. I know that the survival rates are very low and increases greatly by size range. When you see those estimates, it puts int perspective how special even a 35 inch fish is.

 

I do know that the number of naturally reproduced fish in Waneta is very low. When they stock a musky from the Chautauqua hatchery, they clip one of the pectoral or ventral fins. A naturally spawned fish will not have a clipped fin. I don't know if they might have missed clipping a few stocked fish though.

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got to side with with fish junkie and ronix 51 on this one i was there the day they stocked fingerlinges were basically bait would be

surprised if 10% make it the guys that fish this alot how many sub 30S fish do you catch a year i have seen differant

catch and release teq and not are all good not on the same scale but how many of you know the differance between

pre internet trib fishing (70s & 80s) and post internet fishing(90s to present)

Edited by rougarou
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I can’t speak for Otisco - Waneta, but I’m surprised at how Conesus manages to hold up, despite the heavy fishing pressure. I can’t image a lake that gets more fishing pressure per acre. Many keep those occasional 12 LP and up class fish. The DEC has helped a bit: building breeding ponds for northern and stocking tigers and walleyes.  

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The second half of this thread is a great example of why we need more bodies of water stocked with pures across the state. It will give many anglers an opportunity to fish for these beasts who may not have the means to travel hours to Chautauqua, Waneta, or the rivers while at the same time taking off some of the increased pressure.

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Edited by Tigerhunter
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I believe pike and pickerel breed sooner than musky’s thus making it difficult for the musky’s to get a start in waters containing other species of esox. This could be a problem for introducing pure musky’s into Conesus, Silver, Hemlock, Honeoye, etc. There are a few "usually large" waterways like the St. Lawrence where they have completely separate breeding grounds and don’t interface at all when spawning, but often the spawning habit is similar.

Personally it would be great if they swam in most of our lakes.

Edited by NPike
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  • 4 weeks later...
I believe pike and pickerel breed sooner than muskyâ€s thus making it difficult for the muskyâ€s to get a start in waters containing other species of esox. This could be a problem for introducing pure muskyâ€s into Conesus, Silver, Hemlock, Honeoye, etc. There are a few "usually large" waterways like the St. Lawrence where they have completely separate breeding grounds and donâ€t interface at all when spawning, but often the spawning habit is similar.
Personally it would be great if they swam in most of our lakes.

They do inhabit the same spawning areas on the St Lawrence and Niagara. That is why more tigers are being caught every year.

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4 hours ago, HybridHunter said:


They do inhabit the same spawning areas on the St Lawrence and Niagara. That is why more tigers are being caught every year.

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The ideal spawning habitat for each species is different. Muskies generally prefer slightly deeper water. A lot of preferred pike habitat in wetlands has degraded in the St. Lawrence due to reduced water fluctuations and invasive species. It has been said that as a result of that, and maybe some other factors, some pike have been spawning in more typical musky spawning sites which can cause the occurrence of naturally produced tiger muskies.

 

There has been a a large project to restore some wetland habitat in the St. Lawrence. It is being funded mainly by the power plant re-licensing fees. They are opening up channels and shallow pools in the wetlands that were previously choked off so the pike can return to those pools to spawn. At the same time they are planting native aquatic vegetation. It has only been a year or two and they have already noted pike and many other species of fish birds and other aquatic species moving into the new habitat. This is a major project that is being managed and monitored by the Thousand Island Biological Research Station.

 

In the Niagara River it may be a little different, especially in the East River. There is a very limited amount of muskie spawning habitat. Shipping and other shoreline development over the years has eliminated a great deal of the natural spawning habitat. There is a considerable ongoing effort to bring back more natural shoreline habitat in the Niagara River, Buffalo River and Buffalo Harbor. Much of it is also being funded by the NYSEG re-licensing fees.

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