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Ufatz

I almost upchucked!

13 posts in this topic

Flipped to the outdoor page of the Tribune this morning and the first thing I saw was the photo of a stringer of dead trout. I thought I'd be sick. Ha! Just shows how ingrained a behavior pattern can be, eh? I KNOW guys keep trout etc.etc., but occasionally it is brought home to me in cold,grim reality. Fish on boys, fish on...while I quietly avert my eyes. confused.gif

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Is you one of them fish huggers? grin.gif

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Well, it is a blood sport no matter what. Even barbless hook, articials only, catch and release only anglers do occasionally kill fish, whether by playing them to exhaustion, hooking fish in the gills or tongue or by intoducing fungal infections through handling, for example.

The real questions always are:

1) Are you actually going to eat the fish you kill?

and

2) Can the stream from which you're removing the fish tolerate the harvest?

In the case of the fish pictured in the Stribune, they look like stocker rainbows to me (although I only have seen the crummy online edtion photo), which are pretty much placed in the river for the dining enjoyment of the catch and keep contingent.

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There are a few particular streams, especially some with 12-16" slot limits where harvest would do the fish some good. Sounds absolutely ludicrous to some, but it is what it is.

The forage base in many streams just isn't what it used to be due to poor land use practices. There are some streams with over 4200 fish/mile in SE MN, but the forage base doesn't adequately support the growth of those fish. Sure, those fish aren't dying of starvation, but many never grow over 12" because of lack of cover, lack of forage, and lack of feeding lies for all the fish.

There are some streams where wild trout are coming along, but needed a little help (according to DNR data) to sustain a naturally reproducing population, so the DNR put C&R regulations on those streams. Note there are only a few streams that are C&R and they are a very small percentage of SE MN's designated trout streams.

There are some streams where the DNR is trying to encourage the growth of larger trout, and in order for larger trout, there needs to be healthy habitat. In the meantime, until steps can be made to radically improve the habitat, harvesting trout less than 12" can improve growth rates and hopefully make for more larger fish. In many streams there is already evidence that the regulations are working (according to the DNR), and if you've fished some of the areas where habitat restoration work has been done, it's clear that there are more larger fish.

As far as rainbow trout in SE MN go, they're only introduced for one reason, and that's angler harvest. Enjoy them.

There's a huge difference between trout and trout waters in the Driftless and the freestone streams of the Rocky Mountains. The biggest difference is the intermingling of agriculture and cold spring creeks. Finding a happy medium between making sure we all get our steaks, milk, and corn while making sure the trout can thrive is key. I'm not a vegetarian/vegan, so I'm all for trying to make it work.

Wow, sorry for all that.

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A thoughtful and informative post, WxGuy. I wish that I had had the time - and your verbal skills - to detail so well what I meant by "withstand the harvest."

I think that both the Minnesota and Wisconsin DNRs are doing a remarkable job of fitting regulations to the watershed, i.e. identifying and regulating streams on an individual basis rather than using a blanket "five fish daily" or whatever limit.

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Nice update/summary there WxGuy. I KNOW all that but still have my adverse reaction to those poor dead fish hangin' on a stringer. Anybody knows trout taste like week old liver so you guys eat 'em if you want, but I'll take Spam sandwich. Okay. Carry on men. grin.gif

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No; they taste like Bullheads. Or is it, Bullheads taste like Trout?

Never mind.

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i dunno, my Rainbows that just got off the smoker dont taste so bad. confused.gifconfused.gif I dont see what the fuss is about.

However before people get thier panties in a bunch, I will toss back a Brown or a Brook as fast as it came out of the water, so dont worry about those, their safe with me.

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I am mostly a catch and release angler myself but I do occasionally bring home a fresh catch for a nice meal. As far as trout tasting lousy ...you must not be cooking them right. tongue.gif

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Wx is right, all about the food. So when upchucking, kindly direct your stream into the stream, and restrict your diet to aquatic larvae, small fishes and crustaceans, and the occasional mulberry. Every bit counts

ice

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Welcome back Ice. I missed your wit and creativity. I'll just puke fish. Easier for me to swallow.

Craig

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I hibernate.

We got to meet up. I have a new gig that is going to require me to do a lot of fly fishing. Tough duty, etc.

ice

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How abouts you hook up with Stiff, and we make some plans for Red Lake in late May. I'll let ya sleep in the basement. If you behave.

Stiff says he'll bring some gawd awful brew. Both of you can teach me how to fish.

bonefishschmiddy at yahoo (Contact Us Please) com I don't check that one often, so give me a heads up.

Craig

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