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Corey Bechtold

Panfish limits...

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Corey Bechtold

I made this comment in the Crappies/Sunfish forum but was wondering what the overall concensus of this idea would be...

Typically when the houses have to be off the lakes and we need to buy new liscences Panfish are sliding shallow and are really volnerable to overfishing. Wouldn't it make sence to at least lower the limits again up until Walleye/Pike Opener? That way we could insure that there would be some fish left to make a good spawning run and be able to defend their nests from predator fish when the spawn occurs. Maybe dropping the limits in half during that time period would make sence. Who really needs more than 5 Crappies and 10 Sunfish for a meal or two anyway?

Just food for thought,

Corey Bechtold

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Matt Johnson

You know how I feel about this Corey... I'm another panfish geek grin.gif

I think lowing the limits during those times would be a good choice. As you mentioned, these panfish are very vulnerable to fishing pressure. Not many times can an angler sit and catch ten 28-30 inch walleyes in one spot, back to back, but it's very possible to catch ten 9-10 inch sunfish in one spot back to back during those times. And those 9-10 inch sunfish will stack up and are considered trophy fish to a lot of people. Panfish are more vulnerable in general, and to a lot of people, they are considered nothing more than table fare. People generally agree that a large walleye goes back in the lake, but to many people a large sunfish is seen as a nice fillet.

Lowing the limits during these vulnerable times could ensure a better spawn as well as the future of that given body of water...

Just a few words from a biased angler wink.gifgrin.gif

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BDR

I totally agree!! I do think that to really protect them it would need to entend into mid June. Yes you can really pound the Pannies early but it seems later when you can pinpoint the huge ones.

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harvey lee

Why shouldnt we have the limits lowered to 5 crappies and 10 sunfish? As staed above that is plenty for a meal for most famlies.I do believe that the younger generation is very good at policing themselves as they have been brought up with CPR.

I also believe that some of the older fisherman still have the bring home a pail of fish mentality.Some also will double dip every day during a good bite.

If we as sportsmen want to continue to have a good population of fish to catch we have to start to do more and control what we keep.It only makes sense.

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Cyberfish

I would like to see some kind of regs that would encourage harvest of smaller fish and release of the big ones.

We don't have a problem with panfish numbers. Especially in the metro, these lakes are jammed full of sunfish and most of them are small. Now if people took home 20 6 to 7 inch gills and threw back the 8 to 10 inchers, the lakes would be better off.

On lakes that have a lower limit or all release, is seems at first the pannies get huge, but then they spawn, and spawn and spawn, and if there are not enough bass to thin them out, they over populate and get stunted. How about 20 sunfish under 8 inches, and only one over 10?

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rockingroy

I think this depends on the lake. I love panfish above all other species for the table but some lakes are actually better later in the season especially for Crappies. I know a lake near the metro where a limit of crappies is hard to come by in the spring, but from mid August on through October, limits are the norm and I won't keep a Crappie under 9". I'd prefer a slot on these lakes (9" min 1 over 12" for example) Other lakes should be all fish between 9-12" should be immediatly released with 1 over 12". Similar restrictions for Sunfish would be great, but the bottom line is DNR enforcement of such limits would be difficult. Angler restraint is unfortunately the best thing we have going right now, and when it comes to panfish probably the best we can hope for since limits have already been slashed by 33% recently. I wouldn't support 5 and 10, however I would support 7 and 14. I would also support no more than 1 crappie over 12" and no more than 1 Sunnie over 10".

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eyepatrol

I think for the first time I'd have to agree basically 100% with every post that's been written so far! smirk.gif

I share the same concerns here that Corey is talking about. I know what Matt is saying, and I agree to some extent with Harvey Lee's assessment of the younger generation vs the older generation, although I don't want to sound like I'm generalizing the entire older generation into one big group though, because I know there are plenty of people in that age group that do practice C&R.

I also agree with what the others have said in regards to lowering limits for specified periods of time, and even having size limits. It may be tough to police, but I wouldn't think it would be that much more difficult than policing the size restrictions for other fish such as walleye.

I personally would be in favor of either a reduced limit for a period of time, or a "slot" limit of sorts. Either would be fine with me.

Just to take this discussion a step further, and I don't mean to ruffle feathers on this thought, but I also have a concern on whether or not a fish becomes stressed from being caught to a point where it affects their spawn. Along this same line of thought, I know and understand that it's fun to go out and catch a whole bunch of sunnies and/or crappies in a day, but is it really necessary to do so during the spawning period? After the spawn, sure, I don't have a problem with catching numbers of pannies. I guess if I had some reassurance that catching the fish doesn't put overdue stress on them and doesn't affect their spawning, my thoughts on this wouldn't be so concerning. However, if catching pannies during the spawn does affect their spawning, I'd be concerned about the numbers people catch in a day. Anyone have info on this thought?

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Corey Bechtold

I understand what you are saying basscatcher. Smallmouth bass are especially prone to stress when removed from their spawning sites. The ideal spots are taken by doninent fish and removing the fish for a few seconds allows other fish to come in and destroy the beds. I think there was a good article written in an In-Fisherman article a while ago. Panfish aren't that different in that sence. I have read about how there are "sneaker" Sunfish that will spawn with females when the Bull males are away from the nest for a brief time. This stops the good genetics from the Bull males and aides to stunting in a lake.

Good topic so far guys, thanks for being civil about the thought. smile.gif

Good luck,

Corey Bechtold

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riverrat56

I'd be against lowering the limits, once the houses are off very few people are out fishing anyways, there are some on some lakes, but the numbers really drop, also once vehical travel is dones numbers drop further, and that normally is only a week or 2 in time. Although I do see the theory behind it, I don't want another law to deal with, theres to many regs already. Also how do you tell people that they can only keep 5 crappies when all year they could keep 6 eyes? I understand the reasoning for the idea, but I'm personally not in favor of it.

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FRESHWATER PETIE

Slot size limits on panfish sounds like a good idea, on certain lakes. Some lakes need it while other lakes, maybe not? Certain lakes just get more pressure than others. Other things also factor into why some lakes produce large panfish while other lakes don't.

I think the DNR has done a good job, and will continue to improve our fishing. With specific slot sizes, and limits.

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Chad Halvorson

I hardly see anyone on the lakes anyways in the last month of ice, so there is no reason for it. Also, 5 Crappies is barely enough to feed a Big Fella like myself (10") Crappies.

7 Crappies and 12 Gills would be a happy medium IMO.

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Lunker

I agree. I was doing a netting survey with the fisheries society here at my school this weekend, and I was amazed at some of the fish coming out of the shallows. Numerous 13-15" crappies and 9-11 inch gills. At no other time of the year are trophy fish this concentrated. And they are very vulnerable. It's a tough sell though, people don't hold panfish high on their charts of fish to protect.

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Corey Bechtold

Appartntly there are also some people who don't understand that "Daily" and "Posession" limits are the same. I fished with two of my kids today and saw several of the same boats that I saw two days ago. They were still filling the live (death) wells. I also had one guy ask me if I was out yesterday. wink.gif That means that he was out there Sat, Sun and today. Never saw a fish go from hook back to lake. Just from lake to livewell. frown.gif

Panfish are the most sought after fish specie according to the DNR's website. So my gripe is why don't they try and protect some of the fish in these lakes. Fishing Panfish right now is pretty much like shooting fish in a barrel and some people obviously don't have any restraint. They just call a friend or two on the cell phone, go pick up someone on shore and get back to the fish so they can bang up on some more fish.

I'm sorry about venting.

Good luck,

Corey Bechtold

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gorrilla

Ten of each is cool with me. I don't like cleaning more than that anyway, ever.

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PikeBayCommanche

Cory, I agree and it makes me sick to hear about those people. It must make them feel better or something to go home and clean all of those fish. I bet I only took my limit for any species 2 times this year in Minnesota. I like to eat fish but its not even good to eat it more than once a week due to Mercury levels. I am proud to say that living most all of my life in Iowa and catching Thousands of fish I have kept no more than 40 fish. With the lack of fishing options in Iowa I see people keep about anything they catch (10-11 inch Walleyes) and have figured that the more I can do to keep populations up I will do it because I don't need the fish for food.

I just don't get it. Personally I would rather go out and catch a few large fish and get pics than come home with a limit of panfish or whatever.

I would like to thank those responsible fishermen and women who continue to give those fish back for other anglers to report of having a great day of catching fish on the water. wink.gif

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nytelyter

now some one correct me if i am wrong. but i have always been told that a sunfish will spwan multiple times in a summer now how can you protect a fish during spawning if they spawn more that once. i have caught nice sunfish well into summer months that have eggs in them. i am for and do practice c n r but i do also like the little critters an table fare. another thing i do is i have a few elderly people here in town that reap the benifit of a good days fishing. i do not over fish but i love to see the smile a package of fillets puts on their faces. ... paul

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eyepatrol

I for one agree that pounding the fish and taking limits day after day is not a good practice and could potentially cause systematic changes whether during or after the spawn. I do feel it is okay for a person to keep a limit of panfish, since that is what they are entitled to, however, during the spawn I would still have to agree with the intent of this post, that limits should be reduced (or people use restraint). Spawn is an important time for the panfish (or any specie) and it would be nice to see people use caution when keeping fish.

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vikingtom

I want to kow who gets limits day after day. Don't they have jobs. I've gone fishing alot and never got my limit day after day. Guess I'll have to find these guys and park my butt next to them.

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eyepatrol

I know there are a number of retired guys where I'm from that are able to accomplish this. They've been fishing for years and years and know what lake to go to, and when to go to it. Most people though are likely working.

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Cyberfish

mabye we should quit callin' them PANfish !grin.gif

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shorefisher

Reading this post and many like it always make me think am I realy a bad sportsman for fishing 4 days in a row, causing stress to panfish by fishing in the spring and eating a few confused.gif If you do not want to cause any harm to fish or the fish population just don't go fishing. I for one do not need any more laws. Just my thoughts.

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katoguy

Shorefisher, as long as you obey all regulations and never have more than your personal limit in your possession (including freezer)... then I'll agree that you may not be a bad sportsman for fishing 4 days in a row.

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Walleyeguy31

The alleged size limit you are mentioning would keep me from fishing my lake of choice. I have never caught a crappie under 14 inches in the 20 years I have fished it. It pretty much never has an issue giving up limit upon limit of crappies at given times in the Winter, Spring and Fall.

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Matt Johnson

Quote:


I have never caught a crappie under 14 inches in the 20 years I have fished it.


I'm in! When are we going? grin.gif Or how about a trade? Big crappies for big gills? smile.gif

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