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Draft Panfish Managment plan


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You'll want to read all this and get your comments in, you have until February 15.

 

 

 

 For Release: Friday, January 15, 2021

DEC Announces Release of Draft Sunfish and Crappie Management Plan

Proposed Plan Reflects Current Angler Views and Science to Provide Sustainable and Unique Fishing Opportunities for Popular Panfish

Public Comments Accepted through Feb. 15, 2021

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced the release of a draft Sunfish and Crappie Management Plan for public review and comment. The draft plan proposes more conservative statewide fishing regulations and establishes the "Big Panfish Initiative" that aims to provide unique opportunities by managing for larger-sized crappie and sunfish in certain waters. The draft plan is available on DEC's website and public comments will be accepted through Feb. 15, 2021.

"Sunfish and crappie are some of New York's most popular panfish species and with this plan, DEC is balancing conservation and fishing opportunities for more sustainable fisheries in waters across the state," Commissioner Seggos said. "DEC encourages New York's anglers to share their input on this draft management plan and the Big Panfish Initiative to help develop destination fisheries for sunfish and crappie and complement our ongoing efforts to expand and diversify New York State's freshwater angling opportunities."

In the draft plan, fishery managers propose management objectives after considering both the current science on sunfish (bluegill, pumpkinseed, and redbreast) and crappie management and the opinions of New York anglers. Results from an online angler survey (PDF) indicate support for more conservative sunfish fishing regulations. Recent research on the impacts of sunfish and crappie harvest regulations indicates that lowering daily harvest limits or increasing minimum size limits can result in improvements to population size structure, which is likely to improve fishing quality and sustainability for these species.

Elements of the draft plan include:

  • Reducing the sunfish statewide daily harvest limit from 50 to 25 fish;
  • Increasing the crappie statewide minimum size limit from nine to 10 inches;
  • Establishing the Big Panfish Initiative, which includes:
    • Implementing an eight-inch minimum size limit and a daily harvest limit of 15 for sunfish in the following waters:
      • Blydenburgh Lake (DEC Region 1);
      • Lake Welch (Region 3);
      • Canadarago Lake and Goodyear Lake (Region 4);
      • Saratoga Lake (Region 5);
      • Sixtown Pond and Red Lake (Region 6);
      • Cazenovia Lake and Otisco Lake (Region 7);
      • Honeoye Lake (Region 8); and
      • Silver Lake (Region 9)
    • Implementing a 12-inch minimum size limit and a daily harvest limit of 10 for crappie in the following waters:
      • Muscoot Reservoir (Region 3);
      • Saratoga Lake (Region 5);
      • Delta Lake (Region 6);
      • Cazenovia Lake and Otisco Lake (Region 7);
      • Waneta/Lamoka lakes and Honeoye Lake (Region 8); and
      • Bear Lake (Region 9)
  • Evaluating the impacts of these fishing regulation changes to sunfish and crappie population structure and through periodic checks of angler satisfaction.

Comments on the draft plan should be submitted via e-mail to [email protected] or via mail to Jeff Loukmas, NYSDEC, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4753; include the subject line "Sunfish and Crappie Management Plan." Comments will be accepted through Feb. 15, 2021.

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Is this a response to ice fisherman?  The Crappie changes they made before I got behind but I am not sure what good this is going to do.  I am worried about unintended consequences.  Doesn't matter much to me. I usually keep 20-30.  But more bluegill doesn't mean bigger bluegill.

 

 

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2 hours ago, BSmaster said:

Is this a response to ice fisherman? 

I think it more general than that. There are a lot of factors that have changed the dynamic including technology being used such as Panoptics and live units and the ability to clean out whole schools. For some time now there have been folks renting in summer  enmasse at Honeoye for example and filling coolers because they were allowed 25 per person including kids etc.Doesn't take long to deplete populations and then year round fishing pressure maybe it is time to re-evaluate what is happening out there rather than some folks complaining about fishing not being what it used to be. . something needs to be done. I've also seen folks keeping panfish that were the size of fish in a home aquarium. The absence of inclusion of perch in the regs is mystifying.

Edited by Sk8man
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12”on Honeoye!  That’s going to be tough considering I fish there a lot both ice and open water and rarely catch a Crappie over 12”.  How about stopping the weed cutting first and then see what happens to the panfish population.

No new perch regs.?   This was not thought out well..

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12" is a nice crappie. There will undoubtedly be lots of smaller fish to feed the seagulls as guys weed through them to get there. Not every one that gets released dies, but not every one survives, either. If nothing else, the scientist in me says it's an interesting experiment. But slot limit management techniques have been proven effective over and over, I don't get why they aren't used more. Keep your 9-12" eaters, nothing below, one trophy fish above.

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7 hours ago, Pequod1 said:

12”on Honeoye!  That’s going to be tough considering I fish there a lot both ice and open water and rarely catch a Crappie over 12”.  How about stopping the weed cutting first and then see what happens to the panfish population.

No new perch regs.?   This was not thought out well..

More important is getting the Blue Green Algae under control!  

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22 hours ago, GAMBLER said:

More important is getting the Blue Green Algae under control!  

 

On 1/16/2021 at 4:10 AM, Pequod1 said:

12”on Honeoye!  That’s going to be tough considering I fish there a lot both ice and open water and rarely catch a Crappie over 12”.  How about stopping the weed cutting first and then see what happens to the panfish population.

No new perch regs.?   This was not thought out well..

:yes:  The algae problem (and sewage as well) has been a problem for many years. It is a highly eutrophic lake way too many nutrients.

 

I've fished Honeoye since the 70's and I've only caught a couple Crappie that size.....wonder if they just wanted to keep it the same size as the bass limit? I could see 10 inches as there are some in that range and that is all I'd be keeping anyway.

Edited by Sk8man
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I would feel more comfortable if they did a pilot program with a few bodies of water that are different from one another with at least one significant attribute and then track changes.  Do perch etc. and see what correlates well with the changes.  If this approach is solid then expand to the entire state.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Wis & Minn are light years head of most states when it comes to panfish management, specifically bluegills. In-Fisherman has had some great articles on the subject. Their research has proven that fishing pressure, specifically removal of the large parental males, results in stunting & overpopulation. Common opinion is that stunting & overpopulation results from not removing enough fish. Wrong. Both states have for several years had restricted bag limits on select lakes, with either a 5 or 10 fish limit. The results have been positive, with average significant size increases. As a panfish fanatic, I am fully supportive of this proposal. But, like others have mentioned, what about perch?

 

 

 

 

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