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Seneca Seneca lampreys


Roys Boys

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I’ve always had a couple eels stick to the side of the boat this time of year but my dad went out hand lining flashers for a couple hours earlier and scooped a Hand full of eels off the side of the boat.. said he could’ve had more but his hands were full most of the time ( he caught 5 lakers none of which had eels on them) crazy! For 2 1/2 hours of fishing

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Edited by Roys Boys
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Definitely not good to see.  If my memory is correct the lamprey treatments only kill the eggs/larvae so it might take some time to see if it worked.  Lampreys have been my number one suspect for the fishing issues on Seneca. The more we can provide evidence like this to the DEC the better.

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Last fall i Fished Seneca caught a rainbow that had three big lampreys attached to it. Poor fish looked like death warmed over. Killed the three lampreys and let the fish go. I wish there was a way to kill off some of the blood-sucking vampires.

 

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Yuppp fisherdude, I’ve caught a 25 inch laker with 5 on him last year. I think the lamprey treatment does kill the eels if their in the streams.. for some reason I wanna say dec had around 800 confirmed dead eels in a stream after treating it last year..  I heard something like that when they treated it..

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Last fall i Fished Seneca caught a rainbow that had three big lampreys attached to it. Poor fish looked like death warmed over. Killed the three lampreys and let the fish go. I wish there was a way to kill off some of the blood-sucking vampires.
 
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Seems like some kind of trap with live bait... Or something to simulate live bait with a scent of their favorite meal. Enter the trap but can't get out till collected and destroyed...

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There is another way to treat Lampreys. Research has shown that they do not like to enter creeks that smell of dead lamprey, but they love to enter the creeks that smell of very young lamprey. This enables the treatment to be very pointed. The dead smell creeks do not need to be treated while the young lamprey smell creeks attract more of them. In the "sweet" creeks eel weirs are set . these catch thousands of them before they ever spawn. The ones caught that way become fertilizer.

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The lampricide treatment conducted at the stream mouths and stream sections targets the ammocoete (larval) stage of the lampreys which is basically when they are most vulnerable to the chemicals. It isn't to my knowledge effective against adults. The exact dilution of the chemicals and supportive environmental (low wind, no flooding etc.) condiitions need to be right for it to be effective and to minimize collateral damage. This is a very different situation than trying to kill the adult lampreys which can live up to 15 years or more in the lake. These lampreys look pretty much like medium sized ones so they still have  some years left if they were to still live. Previous years high water conditions in the streams which either delayed or prevented treatment efforts in previous years may have resulted in these guys being out there in the numbers they apparently are. Even if treatment efforts are successful it can take years to see the results at the lake level. Have to wonder Steve if those guys may have come from either Wilson or Kashong Creeks as I don't think they are treated.

Edited by Sk8man
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I heard from Web Pearsall, Region 8 Fisheries Manager, last fall, that Region 8 was doing lampricide applications in Seneca Tribs last fall.  He was aware of the complaints about lousy fishing early in the year, but also said that his informants indicating that things picked up later in the season.

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I am not sure how effective it could be but I actually like the live trap idea.  Lampreys could get through very small holes that other fish could not.  Or could make something like the cylindrical minnow traps you see only much larger. Or you may not even need a trap since they are willing to hold onto their prey even when pulled out of the water sometimes.  I will have to look into if they only feed on live prey or if you could use a carcass of something.  I live on the lake and know i would be willing to tend to such a thing on a regular basis if given permission.  Definitely something ill have to think about. 

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I meant the DEC came up with a viable trap design and just used stock fish to catch the eels. They usually drop right off the fish when you pull them. Seems like winter would be the best time since the fish wouldn't have to be so deep and wouldn't get shocked as much pulling them up from deep. Make it so when they fall off the fish the funnel to the bottom of the trap and into a bin for extermination.

Even in the summer I would say it's worth a few lost stock fish to a good cause then letting them go crazy for next 10 years... Or more.

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If I remember correctly the large lampreys in the lake don’t live that long. They spend a longer time in the streams when they are tiny and that’s why chemicals are used in streams. I could be wrong but that is how I remember it being explained to me by one of the guys treating sterling creek a few years back. 

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