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cats on Shetek

17 posts in this topic

Does anyone have any tips on catching catfish on Shetek? I was thinking cutbait at night along the riprap but haven't been out to try it yet.

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They realy liked a small white jig and a crappie minnow on sat, the darn things will eat anything. I still have't found a way I like to cook them.

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excellent! Keep catching them so that we can get rid of them in the lake!!! I caught one off my dock with a white jig and a chunk of worm.

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Why would you want to get rid of them? I heard they are put in there to keep the bullhead population down?

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From what I understand they also harm the walleye population. I'm not a marine biologist by any stretch so weather or not this is true, I don't know. However, both through experience and from talking to the fellas the walleye catch is way down this year and the catfish catch is way up.

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im not too sure on the facts of harming the walleye population but i do believe that they do control the bullheads. if you look at round lake the bullhead populationg is low, the walleyes and catfish are very high and both have very good size. okabena used to be the same way.

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I think you can thank both the Walleyes and the Cats for the low bullhead populations....I know several guys who have been catching big walleyes off of bullys this year.

My wife's uncle in Worthington bought a bunch of Bullhead looking raps and we have done well on Lake sarah with them.

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Ya, But you might want to see what a few years do,too. You might have a good size catch on both the eyes and cats, this year, but see what happens 4 or 5 years down the road. Those cats aren't only feeding on the bullhead spawn, they're eating ANYTHING that's protein. That's wally, pike, panfish and bullhead spawn. I can only hope I'm wrong, but I've seen this happen before. My advice is catch ALL the cats you can, find a good recipe, eat a LOT, and fertilize your trees (deep, spines) with the rest. IMHO Phred52

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I'm not a big fan of cats in our lakes either. I'll use West Graham lake as a reason why. Anybody who has fished that lake knows where the "rockpile" is. Back before cats were in the lake say the mid eighties you could go to the rockplie and if you put in enough time trolling you were almost always assured a nice walleye or two. Sometimes they would be really going and limits were common. The key to this good fishing in my opinion was the three and four inch bullheads that would pack onto this rockpile which would draw the walleyes up on it to feed on them. When the cats invaded the lake they pretty much wiped out this food source. Instead of snagging four inch bullheads on the pile you caught eight inch heads that were hitting your lure. When the food source for the walleyes left so did the good rockpile fishing. The fish may be in the lake yet but you don't catch them like you used to. I just wonder if this isn't what's happening to Shetek.

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This is my first reply here but I email the Windom DNR on the question about Cats on Shetek and the walleye population. They sent me the survery for 2006 and some other items they will be doing.

The survey for walleye per gillnet was 4.2, which is down for the long term average of 16.6.

The survey for crappies per trapnet was 10.7, which is down from the peak in 2002 of 119.8.

The survey for catfish per gillnet was 11.8, which is up from 2002 of 4.5. Catfish frist showed up in the DNR survey in 1996. Catfish were not stock in Shetek but were believed to have come up the river in the high waters of 1993.

The survery for bullhead per trapnet was 0 and gillnets was 8.7 and back in 1992 survery the trapnet was 518.2 and gillnet was 82.4.

So there are a couple of situation that may be affecting the walleye polulation. With catfish eating some of the food supply a lower percentage of walleye may be surviving. Also, both Crappies and Catfish may have an impact on the eating of walleye fry but this is not proven.

Not for some good future news. The DNR plans to stock the 1000/acre of walleye fry for 2 or every 3 years instead of the every other year. So starting with 2006 Shetek will be getting 3.4 million fry per the 2 or 3 year plan plus they are going to do fall electrofishing to check on the success of the stocking and may stock fingerlings in the fall if needed.

Also, they are working with the Twin Cites Metro Area Lake on possibably suppling them with catfish. They need to test catfish for 3 year to certify that they are disease free. They have take 30 adults this year to start that process.

I do most of my fishing on Shetek so hopefully this will be good news for in the next few years. We probably will have a year or two more of being a little hard to catch a lot of walleyes. I guess, we will just have to catch some cats and crappies until the walleye fishing pickes back up. I have been catching a few walleys in the 8-10 inch range so that is good news.

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Thanks for the info wheelchairfisherman. Zero bullheads in a trapnet around here is just about too hard to believe. Them cats are eating machines. Sure would hate to see them make it the few miles upstream into Sarah if they haven't done it already.

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That's too bad. Hopefully it doesn't get to the point where you are catching more cats than walleyes like what has happened at Shetek.

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Do they (DNR) not know what great forage baby bullheads are for walleyes?

The DNR is all about bites per trip and catfish are very accomodating in that regard.

Walleye fishermen and women need to stop this program in its tracks, if possible.

Its only gonna get worse.

I consider them worse than a carp.

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I recently read an article in the Tracy newspaper, the DNR guy they interviewed said that the cats entered the lake from the DesMoines river during the high water in 1993. They plan to trap some for transplant but the fish need to be proven to be disease free for 3 years.

Good or bad I think that there will be cats in the lake for a very long time.

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Wonder how they got into Round Lake, Loon Lake, Clear Lake, Okabena etc.

Pretty hard to hold a horned trout contest with no horned trout.

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Any spots to check out from shore on Shetek for cats? I tried below the dam and at the bridge on the second levee and nothing. I'd be happy to take a few out of the lake for you!

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