sodus_guy_09

Seneca pumpkinseeds

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Fished Seneca yesterday afternoon for a few hours and after failing on jigging for lake trout I tried for some of the big pumpkin seeds I remember catching last time I was there (7 years ago). I did manage 1 and saw some others spawning but didn't seem to see concentrations of them. Is there a specific depth? Stay on the shallow inside edge of the weeds or go out to 15ft or so and fish the deeper side?

 

Sent from my LGL64VL using Lake Ontario United mobile app

 

 

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 I used to catch big sunfish, big rock bass, perch, and bass in Seneca all the time, right off shore.. It might just be me, but they just aren't around in the same numbers in the areas I used to fish,,,  Years ago, if you threw a worm into the  lake  at samson marina wall, You would see a dozen  foot long flashes toward it, as it sank, from every direction... past few years, I go there and no longer even get a bite.. This past week, I and a bunch of other guys were fishing at the park for panfish , all using worms, some even using whole nightcrawlers.. No one even got a hit, where we used to catch a hundred mixed  fish on a summer morning.. the rocks and bulkheads these days are covered with a thick, slimey, brown algae, that just has the look of death to it.. No idea what its called.. i only know that when i see it, there are never any fish around it.. the iron walls at samson used to  be clean, now they look sick with that brown glop., and the massive life I used to see there every year seems gone.. I know this will get some members here pissed, but something has changed in the lake near shore.. If you can't catch a sunny, perch or rockie off the shore this time of year, they simply aren't there... bob

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bulletbob - Don't feel like a lone voice in the wilderness....you are exactly right in your description. Some of the folks on here haven't been around long enough to be able to remember when things were VERY different. It isn't just Sampson either. i grew up at the Geneva end of the lake and fished it every available moment as a kid from shore. There used to be a boat livery named Tuttles (rentals bait etc.) right where the launch is now at the State Park is now and all that land was owned by the City of Geneva back then before they turned it over to the State. There were docks all along there as there are now and we used to fish there all the time. You could see sunfish, bluegills perch, largemouths, smallies, rock bass, and carp and pike swimming all over the place. More importantly there were minnows of various species  in gigantic schools swimming under and between the docks.  You could catch any of the the various species almost at will  Now the area is devoid of any observable life most of the time...even the annual spawning cycles of the bluegills and other fish in the Seneca marina has now nearly disappeared.The area where the Seneca River enters the lake where the T pier is held huge amounts of black bass and rockies and perch as did the bay near the Yacht Club. We caught huge lakers and pike right from shore at the Chamber of Commerce every Spring and off the seawall at the north end. There have been many changes in the lake over the years to the land surrounding (e.g. development) the lake and the water itself and then the introduction of numerous plant and animal invasive species on top of it. The lake has been stressed to the max from this combination and only remotely resembles the  lake I knew as a kid. Seneca has also experienced many ups and downs in its long history too and sometimes it has appeared to rebound from some of these changes. Some of the added stresses to Sampson and the Seneca Lake State Park have been exascerbated by over fishing as well especcially during vulnerable times for the schooling fish (e.g. intense ice fishing of the perch at Sampson,. hammering the bluegill population while spawing at the Seneca Lake marina). I know there will be folks that feel that this is bull and that the populations of fish are cyclical etc. and that everything is fine out there.....but then there is reality.....some of this may be global in nature too.

Edited by Sk8man

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  I think that because the put and take fishery is still viable, stocked trout salmon etc, a lot of people won't believe the lake is in big trouble.. I only know this,- I used to catch so many fish at Cayuga and Seneca, that for several years, i didn't even own a boat.. there was no need.. i caught salmon and lakers from shore until  mid May, then switched to Bass and panfish until fall when the salmonids came close to shore again...
 Honestly. at cayuga there were days i was getting annoyed while Perch fishing from shore in ithaca , because huge smallmouth would keep hitting the bits of worm i was fishing for perch and  pumpkinseeds, one after the other..    i really started to see the big decline in about  2004 or so, a few years after the Zebras became  a major infestation.. I wish I knew what that thick brownish glob is all over the place in both lakes.. that stuff  wasn't there 10 years ago.. I recall seeing a lot of bare rock on the lakes years ago.. bare and pretty clean.. No longer,- if Zebras don't cover them ,the brown glop does, and the fish aren't there.. It really saddens me... bob

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You think that is where these algae blooms come from ???

 

The Cayuga County Health Department has ordered the closure of the bathing beaches at the Wells College Dock in the Village of Aurora and Frontenac Park in the Village of Union Springs due to the presence of potential harmful algal blooms (HABs).

Water quality at public beaches is routinely monitored and the health department closes swimming areas when a potential hazard is identified. 

In a statement released on Tuesday afternoon, Public Health Director Kathleen Cuddy reminds you that “swimming areas outside of public bathing beaches are not regulated by the Health Department. However to enjoy our lakes safely this summer, the public is advised to avoid swimming in water that is discolored.”

When there is no longer the presence of Harmful Algal Blooms, water samples from the swimming area of these beaches will be collected and sent for analysis. The public will be informed when these beaches can re-open.

 

algal_bloom

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Some people I know take a fatalistic approach to the changing fishing and water conditions. Everything has it's ups and downs regardless of what we do. I believe we can better observe, research and come to grips towards a positive future (soon future) for our living and personal environments if we put our noses to the grindstone and work at it. There are issues environmentally that we can manage, as long as we work with our environment and respect it as our lifeblood. This is not "pie in the sky" or politically "liberal" thinking. Just my belief. You (we) can make it if you (we) try....

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 sorry, Panfisher, but we are not talking about a seasonal "up or down" period.. These lakes are  being  subjected to intense  environmental pressure, and aren't going to be able to withstand much more.. Not sure how old you are, but years ago the life was TEEMING inn the near shore areas of the 2  big Finger lakes, and its no longer there.. The water often looks bad, and sometimes even smells bad..  Remember, just because stocked fish  grow big, and are readily caught does not mean all is well.. As long as the alewives are abundant, that will continue..  thats fine with most members here, because this is primarily a site for  guys that troll for salmonids.. No problem there..
 however, to  say its fatalistic to voice the  direct observation of guys that have fished these lakes for decades, is  not good... You could say  we are fatalistic,    but we could say you have your head in the sand.. The building , shoreline   tree, grass, and brush clearing continues at breakneck speed,  vineyards and farms are going great guns..  Add to this  more and more development along  feeder streams, and the  mass invasion of extremely harmful exotic species, and one should have some serious concerns... I can't even fish for sunnies or perch at cayuga with a worm and bobber, or small minnows with my little grandson.. Any natural bait is instantly swarmed by hundreds of gobies, and thats all you catch.. For decades I fished only Seneca and Cayuga, but the  warm water species I prefer are simply  not there in the numbers they used to be .. Not even close. I have  adapted, by moving on.. I agree that we should work at improving the environment, but  its beginning to seem like theres just not much that can be done in lakes this size.. Can't remove the farms and vineyards, can't remove thousands of Mc Mansions and llet the tress , grass and bushes grow back.. Can't remove the Gobies, Fleas, and Zebras.. Fatalistic??.. yeah I suppose, but with good reason I think... bob

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Unfortunately, I have to agree. There are still plenty of panfish left, but a couple of years of trial and error searching and refining techniques are necessary to become successful. These days, I have both my own slot limit and bag limit. No need to "fill the freezer". A lot of other guys are too. Seneca lake is a good example of what can go wrong and I am worried that Canandaigua might be next. And how many of us here over 60 remember the perch and giant gill fishing in Conesus?  

As far as reports go, I am looking for pre fall perch right now and have to report that they are not schooling yet but I am picking up more and more in deep water staging areas off of flats in a few of the finger lakes. Nothing to be excited about, give it another three weeks and they should move in. Temps need to drop in to the 60's.

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It is worth noting that JIm (Pequod1) is someone I regard as one of the top pan fishermen in the this part of the state and although I would very much like to share panfishers optimism and desire to look at the situation as something that we can possibly rely on humans to "correct" or let Mother Nature do her thing to re-generate the necessary lake balance as part of the natural cycle of things I also am more than a little bit concerned about human nature and the current self centered and selfish attitudes present in today's culture and how this translates into this situation.

For example, many of the megastructures that have replaced the little seasonal cottages dotting the shorelines of these lakes (e.g. Canandaigua Lake) are owned by folks that may use them a few times per year so they aren't really concerned with possible consequences of changes in use of the land or water. They may have their 4 ski boats parked in the their hoists some dripping gas and oil into the water, their lawn pesticide applications done by routine services who sloppily apply it in or near the roadways and edges of the water leeching into the lake and various other convenience items impacting the environment and of  which they are totally detached. For the multitude of wineries popping up along the shores and the existing farms I don't see the state insuring that they have burms or barriers along any potential areas where there chemicals or waste can be prevented from entering these waters. The bottom line is the guiding factor in todays cultural mentality. The point here is that there is a complex combination of many stressors impacting these lakes (not just Seneca either) and they are already out of control in terms of their effects on the water quality, the populations of fish and other organisms residing there, and the situation is NOT getting better. I don't think there is a great chance of banning all boat use on the lakes, asking people to desist in building these "status" monstrosities along the lakes, or even stop applying lawn treatments or removing the vineyards and farms to allow the natural processes to perhaps jump start themselves and restore balance. As fishermen though we can control what we do in terms of limiting over harvesting, keeping only the amounts of fish to be used as Jim mentioned and not decimating the schooling species while they are vulnerable, or keeping mainly the largest females ripe with eggs.  

Edited by Sk8man

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