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mudflat

DEC Announces Actions to Protect Salmon River Fish Populations

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Yeah I fished out of two and three ports each year right till the middle sometimes to end of Oct. So I guess I should be honored that your old timer buddies felt they had to track my activity. But they weren’t docked next to me in Wilson or the Genny so they may have missed a few trips. Plus the six years I ran my boat out of Braddocks from my house on the bay. Either way thank god I was able to manage all that loss for 22 years.

 

At the end of the day Gambler I don’t believe I’ve ever taken a personal shot at you or your tackle business. Too bad you don’t have the class to debate our thoughts and I guess differences without getting personal. Especially since you don’t know me and candidly I you.

 

But I guess that’s your character.

 

 

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King Davy I have fished the west side since the mid 80’s and have no idea who you are. That in itself doesn’t mean anything other than I have no other way to judge your character other than by your posts.

I have known Brian and Scott and many others here for a long time, especially Sandy guys, and can personally attest to both their character and acumen.

 

 

 

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Whaler I lived at 7 Bayview Dr for a few years mid 80’s and also docked my boat at Burger Park. If you are a long time bay guy you must have known Eddie Burger.

 

Started guiding when Pete Sheldon was running a boat out of his Bayview drive house.

 

Scott is friends with my long time fishing buddy Gratson who I still fish with these days. Scott and his dad ran out of Sandy and had a boat near my friend Charlie Chick. Don’t know Scott at all but I know he’s been in the game a long time. And is respected by his peers. As far as Brian I know his wife very well as she used to work for my brother in law Dr Dan. She knows me best by my lousy teeth.

 

I’ve been involved with both the lake and trib fishery since the late 60’s started by catching trout and salmon wading Russell Station as a teenager. Past president of the Western Lake Ontario Charter Boat Assoc, ( 22 years an active USCG licensed Capt.) and sat on the NYS sport Fishing Council. Was on staff and wrote a column for the Original Great lakes Fisherman mag and for seven years was the LO editor of New York Sportsman magazine.

 

Having said all that, it doesn’t make me any more special than anybody else, but what all that activity did was get me a long time close to 35 year relationship with the DEC as they I guess, think I have a solid historical understanding of where we started... and find my input valid enough to involve me on our journey forward, along with other OG’s like Vince P and Bob S as a sounding board towards managing the fishery.

 

I could care less if anybody on here likes me, but i don’t think it’s necessary to take personal shots at each other. It’s especially foolish if in the end we are all after the same thing a sound fishery. But that includes the entire landscape west to East open and trib waters. And I have definitely put my time in on fishing our waters. Meetings, seminars, workshops And on the water projects and have the respect of the guys running the show.

 

It’s imperative that we achieve a sound year long fishery. You have to know that no matter how much lake guys or trib guys or both think one is more important than the other ... for the guys who manage it... it’s NOT. They have their eye on the target to have the whole program at the top of the game.

 

So stating that NYS simply shuts down a marquee fishery, which by the way is now the busiest river in the US, and that those anglers have to step aside is disingenuous. No where on this board has anybody started a thread stating that lake guys should not catch steelhead because the tribs are managed for them.

 

DEC knows better than anybody on this website what it takes to get their eggs. You have to trust they will make adjustments (and they have) if necessary to get fish to the hatchery. I got a report yesterday on how many salmon are at the hatchery right now. I’ll be happy to take your bets that they won’t be successful. And they have a plan B and it’s a solid plan.

 

I’m involved in a bunch of programs with DEC to bolster the lake and inland trib fisheries. And have run projects with them and USF&W on our N.Y. waters to help improve the tribs that in the case of Lake Ontario has benefits to the open water fishery. Of course it’s not just me but a whole cast of stakeholders that work hard to make it better. These folks don’t just fish, they give back to the watershed like the 65,000 tress we’ve planted on the Salmon river in and around gravel spawning areas to reduce silt buildup for more successful spawning. I was personally a volunteer on the Oak, Sandy and Genny pen rearing for many years and now back involved with the Oak on steelhead.

 

Many many stream cleanups to pick up after the slobs that unfortunately soil our river banks.

 

Yankee Rick made a statement that the lake guys have had to pay the price never getting anything in return. And yes it’s tough to live through stocking reductions (like 1993 when salmon stocking was cut in half and not fully stocked again for over 7 years) and creel changes. BUT the trib community gave back two steelhead per man per day to the fishery back in 2004. And still 2 Vs 1 today and now two brown trout back to the lake per man per day. We weren’t forced to do that but realized to maintain the strength of the fishery for 12 months a year it was what was best overall. Especially for two species that got pressured on both the lake and the tribs essentially 12 months a year. We were forward thinking enough on what best benefits all. Not just rivers and streams.

 

And the focus has to be for all, because that’s the page DEC is on... and will be forever. I suggest we all get in the same page.

 

So Whaler Don’t Care if anybody likes me. But maybe you should know the person better before you judge them. I have an advantage with the long term relationship I have with the state. I see these threads going off the rails and I’m simply trying to make sure you have more up to date information.

 

We have several documents you guys haven’t seen yet and it’s not our place to share them before DEC. For instance the 20+ rivers that get steelhead stocks that Gambler doesn’t think exists. If I share that I’ll make him look foolish. I wouldn’t do that on a public board. Don’t take my word for it ask one of the other panelists.

 

If you folks are amped up so much that you want to take your shots, stop being keyboard cowboys, let’s meet for a drink and you can yell and scream all you want. I promise you I can give as good as I can get.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

We do seem to be getting a bit carried away on this thread. These are important perspectives both ways but like the debate last night the real issues have been obscured or the actual focus on them has not been totally productive. I think many folks are on edge because of the covid crap underneath all this and the limitations it has imposed on our lives so we might want to lighten up all the way around and maintain mutual consideration and respect for each other despite our differences of perspective and interests.

The DEC folks try hard to do their jobs and these are especially difficult times for many reasons. Whether we agree with them or not we need to be supportive of their efforts as they operate within a huge sometimes cut-throat bureaucracy and some of their policies and operations may not be  fully under their own control anyway. Not trying to preach but we do need to keep perspective here.

Edited by Sk8man
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The new America... fisherman can no longer get along either🤣.. I understand the passion runs deep for sum and thanks for all those that do promote and enhance OUR fishery.. I am a little confused as to how we want natural spawning but they get caught on their journey on their way to do so??? If natural spawning is happening why wouldn’t the season close as it does with walleye, bass, pike etc? My son and I fished the lake Saturday outa the oak then we went to the power plant, only due to his request. Quite a few kings landed and watched all the hens that were caught were stripped of their eggs... as well as several stripped out carcasses by the parking lot. thank god walleye closes for the spawn🤣🤣


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The thing with natural reproduction it can and has happened in any river or stream that male and female chinooks can find suitable spawning environments. But to date unless DEC has an annual scientific method/program to measure the success of Wild Vs Stocked yearly they won’t “over regulate” the Fall River fishery. And think about it ... it could spill over to the lake.

 

If they clipped all stocked salmon every year (expensive, requires man power, and some what dangerous putting those little salmon through the trailer, yet much safer than doing the clipping by hand) And had a program like they do with involving anglers collecting coho noses etc. by having a trusted diary program where anglers are willing to participate and collect data on if every salmon they caught was clipped or not could they accurately put a number to wild vs stocked.

 

That would involve all of us through the salmon fishing season lake and trib. Would be great right, think of the data that could be collected. And hard accurate data drives their decisions.

 

You might ask how does regulation spill over on the lake. If DEC HAD to depend on wild stocks, there could be slot limits on kings. You could be under regulation to release all wild female salmon on the lake and tribs, salmon creel changes on both lake and tribs, closed seasons etc etc etc.

 

Since we are no where near that, the state isn’t going to over regulate any part of the fishery. They had planned to start clipping hatchery fish again this spring but do to COVID-19 had to scrap those plans.

 

Could this happen some day. Only if there was #1 enough budget money which we all know isn’t likely to happen in our seriously broke state, and increased man power which the DEC has failed to be able to hire (because of the YOY budget constraints).

 

So we move on as we have. But if some of these programs could ever be launched with greater involvement with the stakeholders ( all of us), we’ll have to work together. Be great if we could get there now.

 

 

 

 

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Additionally I have spent the last 22 years fishing the most heavily regulated King Salmon fishery on the planet. Alaska. I’m sure some who read these pages have experienced what I’m talking about.

 

You’ve saved your pennies for years to make that one trip of a life time to the Kenai where I’ve personally caught 50+ pound kings. You have a guide and a week of fishing the big river all lined up. You are excited beyond words. You board your 6 am flight out of Rochester arriving at Ted Stevens airport in Anchorage late afternoon and while you were in the air, they closed the king salmon fishery.

 

That’s what happens to fisheries that depend on wild fish. (Like our Canadian brothers who depend heavily on wild reproduction of salmon and steelhead because they have the habitat on the north shore to produce a viable sport fishery) So why they shut down natel areas up these rivers, yet Not the entire river.

 

And yes that’s why we absolutely need our hatchery system to be successful and nobody knows that more than the DEC. They monitor fish movement to the hatchery and water conditions with Brookfield every day, my friends at DEC are In countless meetings every week to assess the situation to include any and all emergency measures if needed.

 

I doubt you scrutinize your dentist, surgeon, or airline pilot on how to do their job. These folks are scientists, let’s trust them to do their job first.

 

 

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King Davy, I've been reading everything you say.

 I will say, you seem to be the voice of reason on here.

 I do have to say considering this is an entirely man made fishery the dec does a fantastic job managing this fishery. I've fished all over and I would consider there work probably the most superior in fish management and stocking In our country. That said. If they need help clipping adipose fins all they need to do is ask. I'm sure alot of guys get there regular emails like I do. I live 15 minutes from the hatchery and would be more then willing to help as I'd bet others would too. 

As for the garbage all up and down the river the mass majority seems to come  mostly from the salmon crowd. I've also noticed the majority of that garbage is coming from the heavy drinkers of that crowd. I know guys arent gonna like this but if an open container law for the river were issued it would help alot.

A few years ago mid week I fished the bovine. I always have a garbage bag in my gear. That particular day I picked up 100s of beer cans. One pile had over 40 cans alone. How else do we deal with that? Any ideas.

I did come out here to guide with an uncle who passed away after I bought my place before I moved here. I decided not to guide here at all due to the ugliness of the salmon fishery on this river.  The disrespect to the fish alone makes me sick to see. I still disagree with the legality of the DSR but I fully understand why the land owners did it.

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It's that time of year again. The spawning season sales pitch.

Same BS every fall.:rofl:

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DavidA it’s unbelievable that the Salmon crowd historically has been the black eye of the fall trib fishery. It’s seems to have never gotten better. Although I truly see more ethical anglers these days. More for sure after the salmon season.

I’ve been in meetings with Trib stakeholders and DEC to discuss the never ending failure of this type of behavior for decades. Law enforcement CO’s can and will hand out tickets for littering but of course they have to witness it first. It’s sadly a losing battle and I would be willing to bet most of these folks don’t throw their trash on their lawns or living rooms.

In 1999 near when I got out of the lake guiding business and having been a river angler all my life, I decided I was going to get a group of the stakeholders together and we were going to put an end to this nonsense. We formed and international group (Canadians and US river fisherman) and our charter was to educate those poor souls who didn’t know how to or prove to those that didn’t care that a king salmon would bite a bait, lure, or fly and one didn’t need to snag them. This was five years after snagging had been outlawed.

We met on a January snowy day at the Braddocks Bay hotel (many on here know the place). Carload of guys from Canada, and NY and we formed in this one meeting the Lake Ontario Steelhead Association. LOSA. A United international group.

We had some of the top fly fishers ( one was on the US fly fishing team) some of the best gear guys from both shores float, and hardware guys, including one of the premier two hand casters in the country.

For nearly 10 years we ran on the water seminars every spring up in the salmon river and had up to 60 participants per event working with our experts on all methods of trib fishing. The strategy was to teach as many as we could in hopes of them passing it on.

We folded our group 10 years after the start up with simply an EPIC failure to meet our goals. We did lots of habitat work, stream clean ups, and took the proceeds from our seminars to push equipment back to DEC like office supplies printers copiers, gas cards for the technicians doing the trib creel census work, but as far as the big idea that we were going to fix the salmon season mess........ epic failure. KO’d.




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The fin clipping, although conducted over a 3 year period, was only a mere snapshot of the conditions at that time.  Natural reproduction will vary with the environmental conditions that are presented each season so to bank on numbers evaluated almost a decade ago on how much stocking is required is silly.

 

One positive - the fishery on Lake Huron has certainly rebounded in the past 5+ years.  When Lake O crashes, there will most likely be a resurgence.  Gone are the glory days of the 80's and 90's on the quantity of fish that were caught.  All of our expensive toys will be traded in for smaller items.....

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Crash?  The bait futures I saw at the end of the year say otherwise. 

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Posted (edited)

Littering is a far greater problem than just the Salmon River or New York State for that ma\tter. The oceans of thew world are becoming waste dumps and take a look at the road ways nearly anyplace you travel and folks have thrown out cig butts, beer cans, McDonald's bags full of trash etc.. I will say it seems less of a problem in some of  the western states but they also tend of have smaller populations too. It is truly a shame The folks doing this just don't care and the problem is so extensive with poor ability to monitor or  intervene to prevent. Now people are saying lets explore Mars....yeah right that will make another great trash dump.:o

Edited by Sk8man

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Lake Erie has an international fishery control board that issues harvest quotas for walleye and yellow perch takes. When USA states fail to take their quota, their unused quota is added to the Ontario commercial catch quota. Lake Ontario has stocking quotas and when the forage base falls off, the stocking numbers are cut to reflect size development of the salmon. Natural wild hatched numbers are not controlled so possibly our hatchery stocking numbers will be limited. Lakes Michigan and Huron have started to recover now with stocking numbers cut back and the forage base increased. Salmon stocking was started to decrease the alewife and smelt base that died off and littered the waters. If  you want forty pound salmon to return then you will see cuts in the salmon stocking here.

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Went to ADKs with the wife to look at leaves . 

Stopped at Fat Nancy's to get some hooks / etc on way up at 6 am Sat . 

Counted 50+ cars in the parking lot . The place was packed with guys getting licenses lined up around the store . 

 

4 guys in front and I spent a total of close to 700$ as I was watcgin the cash register display . 

 

McDonald's and Dunkin drive thru lines were long . 

 

 

 

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Just let them have their 3 weeks of fun snagging half dead zombies. Charge 100.00 snagging fee for salmon only no trout. Fine anyone with a trout on the bank in those 3 weeks and the state will make more money now then every before. And there will be enough salmon to collect eggs

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Once the turn color, they are no longer "fresh".  Once they start staging, most are done eating and living off of fat reserves.   They do not fight nearly as hard.  

Or taste nearly as good


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I'm not sure people realize how many fish we are getting in the lake are natural  (I didn't until this year) and that river has a lot to do with it.

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2 minutes ago, akashgupta27 said:

I'm not sure people realize how many fish we are getting in the lake are natural  (I didn't until this year) and that river has a lot to do with it.

 

I'd love to know how you can tell the difference since the fin clipping project is over? We all know from that project there is natural reproduction, but you specifically stated this year.

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Here’s the unofficial word from the hatchery ( obviously they want to ...have to announce this) but from reliable sources sounds like they met their king salmon egg take in three days. No idea what the goal was (haven’t heard what that number is ) but they are finished

 

Coho’s are next and they have a huge group of coho’s in the hatchery and expect to easily meet their egg take goals.

 

Word from some acquaintances who worked the egg take they sampled some really nice big fish. And from the cohos I’ve caught and have seen caught we have a nice healthy group of fish that many believe are a little larger than usual.

 

So despite the low water and heavy fishing pressure the hatchery experienced a solid run of kings and cohos and will be in the process of raising them for next season.

 

 

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Great news!

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I never for one second had a doubt they would get what they needed . 

 

And some wanted to lock down an entire regions revenue for nothing . 

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