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Jonny P report. 5/16

9 posts in this topic

Walleye have been sneaking up on slip bobber rigs and shiners in 4-6 feet of water around the lake. Some bigger fish have been caught using a slow crank bait presentation in fresh water discharge areas and over the scattered rock piles towards the south shore.

The crappies have shifted down a few gears while feeling the effects of a cooling lake caused by wind and temperature drops. Crappies are still being caught using a slip bobber over a jig tipped with a smaller shiner. The best approach has to hopscotch down the 4-6 foot break line looking for active schools of crappie then anchor over them once found.

Pike are still showing the signs of a tough spawn. They are attacking crank baits and shiner presentations. We have yet to see the pike fully turn on and go into full speed feeding mode. As the water warms and the pike heal up from spawn it should continue to improve. Several large pike have been caught although they are not at their full potential currently.

Sheephead, croaker or drum as they are often called have staged just off the front lines in 7-9 feet of water and are moving in shallower all the time. Sheephead have been striking live minnow presentations but when targeted with a crawler on a white jig it becomes nonstop action.

Perch bites scattered with fathead minnows on light jigs producing in 11-12 feet of water. Aggressive jigging and “hopping” the bait has been ringing the dinner bell for perch.

I would also like to take a moment to address the proper handling of the walleyes and pike within the slot. Several anglers have been observed rough housing these fish. Allowing the fish to flop in the bottom of the boat, tossing the fish up into the air during release, several accounts of culling these shallow warm water fish and the infamous ten minute photo shoot before returning the fish into the water. Remember today’s released fish is tomorrows trophy.

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Jon,

Do you think there would be any support for a no cull policy like Canada has? After fishing up there it is so much simpler to have a cooler of ice and kill the fish immediately and ice them. It eliminates the temptation of culling that 15" for a 16.75". Besides Red's surface temp can be so warm that even fish in a live well die and turn white.

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So true Jonny P! a while back i got keelhauled for stating i like to eat fish and wish the limit was 6 in possesion for a 4day trip.But rough handling walleyes does more damage than if you just kept 6 and quit. Jonny is so right just the strain of catching them and releasing them the right way will kill fish so if you dont take care with them you might just as well keep them. Take care of the lake and the lake will take care of you. Also dont sit in one spot and catch walleye after walleye. You will kill more than if a guy would get 6 or 10 and leave. just because you dont keep them does not mean you are not killing them. I know its fun but it may not be right. Bobber fishing them also is tough because of swallowed hooks so cut the line if need be. i bobber fish all the time and take them as soon as the fish takes it. i miss more but i dont often gut hook them. Jonny nice job for pointing that out!

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Re: Culling

If keeping fish for eating is the intent then a "livewell" is not the answer. As pointed out in an earlier post, fish kept in a livewell in hot weather die and turn almost white and don't taste anything like what they should. A cooler with ice keeps them much better. When the fish comes into the boat make the decision keep/release, if kept give it a good firm rap on the head and put it on ice. When it gets to the table you won't be disappointed, and the culling issue becomes moot. Old Sneller

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What gets me is why not fish Red to the fullest. Many have spent hundreds driving to Waskish, gassing up the boat, buying this and that for the trip, taking days off of work and just the time invested. Go fish your walleye, then go hit some crappies or cast for pike, chase down some of the nice perch or even catch a couple sheephead just because. To be honest I think catching those walleyes can get a bit boring after awhile.

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I came across Wisconsin DNR articles, talking about Released Musky Mortalities.

They gut hooked some Muskies in their ponds, and found that even with cutting the line, and immediate release, an 83% total Mortality, of those fish after one year, due to infections, or injury. No mortality after 24 hours, 22% after 50 days, the rest after that, with a high percentage not dying till after winter. shocked.giffrown.gif

They are discussing requiring quick set/strike rigs, with the extra Stinger treble, when using larger minnows, so the set can be made before they swallow the bait.

I would think this type of Mortality would apply to other similarly hooked fish also.

The other thing they discussed was regularly hooked Muskies being released, having a 10% Mortality.

If this holds true for other fishes, it would seem that those making every trip a personal contest, catching and releasing fifty or a hundred Walleyes, numerous big Pike, and others, on Red could have a significant negative impact on the populations. frown.gif

Just because we see the fishy swimming away, does not mean it will survive...long term.

Everyone has been like kids in a candy store, with the number of fish caught on Red, and understandably so, but if we dont start to reel in some of that abuse, and rough handling, and culling, we will all be sad in a few years. frown.gif

Definately something to consider carefully...

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You know guys all the rules in the book will not stop the i----, they will just reach into a cooler and slide the dead fish back into the water for eagle food, the more people that take up fishing the more i----- there will be its a % thing they are everywhere, my solution give the man with the badge good camera equip have him film the i----- and take his gear away stiff penalty but on tape I know personally the badge does not stop them from lying too, thankfully in my case I had the film to prove his lies but he still has his badge and is out there still, but if they have absolute proof hit them HARD!!!!

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Jonny hit the nail on the head.

This past weekend when I was up at our place in Cass Lake one of my buddies friends was out fishing and called us to see how we were doing.

We told him we were out casting for pike and his response was: Oh can't catch any walleyes.

Well of course we can but It is so boring sitting there all day dragging live bait around the drops.

Casting spoons and spinners catching 40-50 Northerns is fun fishing. Heck even the smaller fish are bigger than most of the walleyes you catch.

For me I have to have a mix or it just is not as much fun. smile.gif

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Jonny i agree we spend alot on a trip to url thats why i would like a few more walleyes but i am going to hit the slabs and maybe go looking for some perch. i just wont sit in one place and pound the walleyes. if there are no slabs there i move even though its great fun catching the walleyes. i just dont want to catch 50 and kill 10 even though we do our best to get them back in the water in as good of shape as we can. its a great fishery lets take care of it.

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