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Lowe

Crappie Ages

18 posts in this topic

Stan,

Your 15 1/2" crappie was 8 years old.

One interesting thing - the crappie was caught in March 2001, which meant it came from the 1993 year class, two years before the "big" class of 1995. The first two years of its life it grew fairly slow, and then, in 1995, it grew at the same rate (pretty dang fast)I've seen for the 1995, 97, and 98 year class fish.

There should be some nice slabs caught next winter - the 1995 year class will be 8 years old :-)

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WOW, sounds like good fishing in the next couple of years. Thanks for the info.

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Thanks Lowe,
Stan C.

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Lowe... Natural mortality is definitly taking its toll on URL. As the '95 year class dies off there will be less and less crappies to harvest because the perch populations and the walleye populations are heavily competing with the crappies now. I stocked the hell out of URL while working for the MNDNR in MN and anyone who wants to take advantage of the quality crappie fishery that is present now better do it now because the lake will eventually re-establish it self in no time as a walleye fishery once again.

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Alaskander, are you a biologist? What do you know about the life span of a crappie? Will they die of old age if they're not caught or will they just keep on growing? Is the life span of a crappie shorter than other fish like pike and walleyes? Just curious.

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Alaskander70...What fish did you stock in Red lake????

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I agree with everything you said, Alaskander. I said in one of my earlier posts that nature has a way of reverting to form, and I think that holds true with Red becoming a walleye lake again.

The oldest crappie I've heard of is 14 years.

Stan, there is a possibility your 15-1/2 inch fish was much older than what I originally posted, although I still think it's probably about 8-9 years old. Crappie scales become very difficult to age after 6-7 years of age.

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Lowe, Alaskander,
Any idea on how old a 17.5in would be caught out of a metro lake (White Bear), I'd send you a scale, but it's been on the wall for a couple years...

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If the walleyes will more than likely outcompete the crappies for that niche will stocking the walleyes possibly ruin one of the greatest crappie fisheries? Or would it be unlikely for the crappies to pull of more strong year classes like the '95 and '98 classes thus causing a decline in the population anyways?

P.S. Does anyone know why wasn't Red put in with the lakes with experimental Northern Pike regs? It has trophy potential, doesn't it?

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The URLAA has been trying to put together a slot limit to go with the catch and release program. One more of those things that need to be done but we have either too many projects or not enough people to do them.

------------------
Waskish Minnow Station
218-647-8652

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I don't have any way to prove it, of course, but if I had to bet on it - I would bet there are at least as many walleyes (total - all sizes) in the lake as there are crappies, right now...

[This message has been edited by swamptiger (edited 05-01-2002).]

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BlackJack...I Have fished URL for many years and the transition of species in that period of time has fascinated me! I find it interesting to observe a natural fishery (previous stocking excluded) switch dominant species at such a fast rate (assuming the commercial fishery was responsible). We are witnessing what normally takes place in a much larger time scale.

Once the state recognized that the walleye populations had crashed their objective was to stock, stock, stock and fill the niche void that had been created by the commercial and subsistance overharvest. If they would have known that the crappie fishery was about to explode, I am sure they would have solicited info from the public and altered their management decisions slightly. The walleyes are coming back strong in Red and that means the crappie fishery will suffer due to competition with the walleyes and poor crappie recruitment will be a strong factor.

Crappies have always existed in URL, but never have they had the opportunity to "shine" like they are now. With the absence of their main predator and perfect spawning conditions they had an open window to dominate and they did. Now you’re seeing the yellow perch population benefit from the past void of primary predators (walleyes). The Pike population has been one of the best in the state and the size of the lake and little knowledge of the pike fishery has protected it for years.

Crappie life spans are different in all parts of the state and more specifically they're different in each system or lake they exist in. Crappie life spans are common between 7-10 years of age in Northern MN and yes crappies will eventually die of natural mortality. Predation, environmental conditions, and competition are all factors that regulate crappie growth and success.

I have heard of crappies being caught from the '87-'88 year class, "I am not one of those fishermen unfortunately"! I find it amazing that a crappie in a system full of large pike could possibly survive this long, but they did not get to that size by being dummies!

I give Lowe credit because there is a good chance he has received scales that have been regenerated and impossible to read. I have personally caught many crappies with pike scars in URL.

As far as the 17.5 inch crappie is concerned. I would guess it between 2.5 and 3.2 pounds! This is not very precise, but I have seen crappies that were 16 inches weigh 1.11 and 2.5 pounds. It is anybodies guess how large that fish is if it’s (nigromaculatus) and not a white crappie. I would also estimate that age at 10-15 years.

Time for bed! I enjoy hearing info on URL especially because I am a “Crappie guy” and I am spending all of my time trying to restore salmon populations on the Upper Kuskokwin and Yukon Rivers here in Alaska. NO CRAPPIES IN ALASKA!!

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Lowe & Alaskander70,
Thanks for all the info. It's good to have you guys on board the forum. It helps us all think we're smarter. smile.gif
When you get done working on fish could you do some work on the "URL Triangle"? I'm not sure if NINETOE and Jigglestick are the right people to put in charge of investigating it. Actually I'm wondering if they don't cause it. grin.gif

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Waskish Minnow Station
218-647-8652

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I was working for a friend at a taxidermy shop one day when a guy brings in the biggest crappie I've seen in my life. Most crappies brought in to the shop are 13"-16" long and weigh 1¼ - 2½ pounds. This monster was 18½" long, 3" thick and was 3lb, 9oz. At the time the state record white crappie was 3lb, 4oz. The fish had apparent vertical stripes and the measurement from the eye to the front of the dorsal fin was longer than the length of the dorsal fin. The weird thing was the guy didn't want to bring it in for a state record verification. He kept saying he thought it was a black crappie. What do ya think? I found out a couple weeks later that the guy lives on the lake he caught it on and didn't want the increased boat traffic on his lake. By the way, what is the black crappie state record and world record? I've seen the state record posted as 5 lb, but the world record at 4 lb + something. What's up with that?

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kelly, i can only speak for myself, but i think ninetoe would agree, the power and magnitude of the triangle has yet to be seen to it's fullest. i think it has something to do with the negative polarity in the ice on the lake clashing with the polarity of the ice in my drink which when man made exibits positive polarity. this doesn't even take in account moon phase and an increasing amount of negative ions(due to increased vehicle emissions i think). if my theory is correct all should be well during the warm weather open water conditions. anybody want to give it a try with me?------jigglestick-------

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Jigglestick...I'll have a drink with you, but to fully understand the triangle do we have to gather around the outboard exhaust and allow the open water mystique to similuate that of ice? I guess I'm open to just about anything. Once while fishing with the EX-girlfriend I had thought of ending it all by placing my lips around the lower unit exhaust port. Sucking exhaust seemed a much better option than listening to her for a second longer.

We spend our whole lives chasing girls only for them to catch us. Why not just remain very still and wait for them to leave us alone? Speaking of one imparticular of course, not all, have not had them all yet!

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I'm sorry Jigglestick but your theory that the URL Triangle is not as strong in the summer is wrong. Just this spring another strange occurance of things moving around happened. After social hour was done a Lady went back home and was ready for bed when she remembered that she needed something from the car. When she got out to the car it was locked and she remembed that the keys were in the house. That's when she realizes that the house is also locked. She decides that the best thing to do is to go back to West Wind for some help. Back down the highway bare footed and dressed in her pajamas. Nobody can convince that truck driver that came by and saw the bare footed "ghost" on the highway that there is not an URL Triangle. smile.gif

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Waskish Minnow Station
218-647-8652

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kelly, i've been waiting for how long for a woman to show up at the bar ready for bed. i'd have to say once again, my timing was way off.as to the triangle, it was just a theory. i'll have to work on another one. in the mean while lets have another!
alaskander--sucking on the exhaust sounds like it would do the trick, only thing it would take to long. when a guy gets in that situation i think it would be best to get it over with as quickly as possible. i think sticking one's face right into the prop should work. much less painful than an earful of female yappin---jigglestick---

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