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NBrevitz  
#41 Posted : Tuesday, February 13, 2018 7:12:58 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Gurth Go to Quoted Post



Originally Posted by: NBrevitz Go to Quoted Post


As for the 2-3 lb Brown average, that absolutely exists in a couple streams up north.




Awaiting your PM. Flapper


You’ll be camping near them next summer. Find the towns of Cable and Mason and look at the Trout map.

As for introduced Salmonids in the Great Lakes, it’s very, very complicated...
I’d love to see a return of nothing but Coasters and Lakers in N Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, and Lake Superior, with Lakers and Atlantics returning to Lake Ontario.
That said, Coasters and Lakers cannot control the Alewife populations that the Pacific Salmon were brought in to control. With global warming it’s be even worse. In addition, a thyamine deficiency due to preying on Alewife greatly reduces spawning success in Lake Trout and Atlantic Salmon. This is why Lakers recovered in Superior so much faster. In addition, stocking is necessary to maintain sport fisheries on the WI Shoreline of Lake Michigan, the rivers are way too warm. Then you’ve got the huge economic impact of the fisheries.
I’d like to see Lake Superior returned to a native focused lake, but the Steelhead can stay, being spring spawners. As for the other lakes, natural Atlantics are only possible in a few tributaries to Lake Ontario, and even then efforts have largely failed. If you want sport fisheries across the Great Lakes, stocking exotics is necessary given the unintentionally introduced exotics already in the lake, the cruel irony. Also, the Michigan side is now largely naturally sustaining so the Chinooks aren’t going anywhere, I’ve found them up tiny tributaries 25 miles inland.
"I fish because I love to: Because only in the woods can I find solitude without loneliness."
JGF  
#42 Posted : Tuesday, February 13, 2018 8:03:15 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: NBrevitz Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Gurth Go to Quoted Post



Originally Posted by: NBrevitz Go to Quoted Post


As for the 2-3 lb Brown average, that absolutely exists in a couple streams up north.




Awaiting your PM. Flapper


You’ll be camping near them next summer. Find the towns of Cable and Mason and look at the Trout map.

As for introduced Salmonids in the Great Lakes, it’s very, very complicated...
I’d love to see a return of nothing but Coasters and Lakers in N Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, and Lake Superior, with Lakers and Atlantics returning to Lake Ontario.
That said, Coasters and Lakers cannot control the Alewife populations that the Pacific Salmon were brought in to control. With global warming it’s be even worse. In addition, a thyamine deficiency due to preying on Alewife greatly reduces spawning success in Lake Trout and Atlantic Salmon. This is why Lakers recovered in Superior so much faster. In addition, stocking is necessary to maintain sport fisheries on the WI Shoreline of Lake Michigan, the rivers are way too warm. Then you’ve got the huge economic impact of the fisheries.
I’d like to see Lake Superior returned to a native focused lake, but the Steelhead can stay, being spring spawners. As for the other lakes, natural Atlantics are only possible in a few tributaries to Lake Ontario, and even then efforts have largely failed. If you want sport fisheries across the Great Lakes, stocking exotics is necessary given the unintentionally introduced exotics already in the lake, the cruel irony. Also, the Michigan side is now largely naturally sustaining so the Chinooks aren’t going anywhere, I’ve found them up tiny tributaries 25 miles inland.


The funny thing is that's exactly my argument for browns in many driftless area streams. They are there - in no small part - because the ecosystems are so different from what they were and should be. They do better in the human-altered landscape that are Driftless streams and watersheds. Groundwater connections are greatly different now that we have valleys filled with sediment that should be on hillsides and valleys should be wet meadows rather than prairies or ag lands. Thus, temperatures in many streams favor browns over brookies.

While I agree that we should prioritize brook trout over browns, in many places it's not very possible as browns are too well established, watersheds are too large, and a host of other reasons. We should absolutely do what we can to save brookies where the likelihood of success is high. There are some great examples of where we've been successful - and a few where we've been less than successful. We should learn from both of those and use the rather limited resources to best manage fisheries for long-term sustainability.

As for the Great Lakes, the problem I have right now is even when stocking non-natives is not the right decision biologically due to crashing alewife populations, they keep stocking more of them because politically/socially, they can't stop. Meanwhile, browns and the native smallmouth bass and Lake Trout are much better at controlling the newer benthic invasives (gobies) - and we cut back on them. Ain't fisheries management grand some times?

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s.t.fanatic on 2/21/2018(UTC)
NBrevitz  
#43 Posted : Tuesday, February 13, 2018 10:16:08 PM(UTC)
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The one problem with ceasing the stocking of Pacific Salmon is that your one overwhelming control for Alewife is then largely gone, especially in Wisconsin. I agree 100% that it needs to get cut back, but with warmer winters and drastically less Salmon in the lake, the die offs will be immense. Lakers cannot naturally reproduce as long as there are Alewife in the lakes in any amount.
"I fish because I love to: Because only in the woods can I find solitude without loneliness."
NBrevitz  
#44 Posted : Tuesday, February 13, 2018 10:31:50 PM(UTC)
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I’d like to see Browns stocked at their pre-2017 levels, similar amounts of Steelhead, and a 30% reduction in Chinook and Coho stocking on Lake Michigan, especially on the Michigan side with plenty of naturally sustaining streams like the Platte and Crystal.
"I fish because I love to: Because only in the woods can I find solitude without loneliness."
JGF  
#45 Posted : Wednesday, February 14, 2018 12:11:50 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: NBrevitz Go to Quoted Post
The one problem with ceasing the stocking of Pacific Salmon is that your one overwhelming control for Alewife is then largely gone, especially in Wisconsin. I agree 100% that it needs to get cut back, but with warmer winters and drastically less Salmon in the lake, the die offs will be immense. Lakers cannot naturally reproduce as long as there are Alewife in the lakes in any amount.


Lake Michigan is following the same trend as Lake Huron did a number of years ago when the Alewives crashed there. The food web has shift thanks to Quagga Mussels and Round Gobies. Fishes that eat gobies - lakers, Brown Trout, and a number of warmwater fishes are doing well. Salmon, I think, will crash as they did in Huron.

The reason we stock is that the charter guys complain if we don't. Something like 60% of the salmon (at least the Chinooks) in Lake Michigan are wild fish out of Michigan streams already. I see no reason that they can't keep up with the Alewives unless they make a major turnaround.


http://msue.anr.msu.edu/...and_trout_msg16_okeefe16

Lakers are spawning quite successfully again in Lake Michigan. They're doing quite well in Lake Huron. Problem is the charter guys don't like them.

thanks 1 user thanked JGF for this useful post.
s.t.fanatic on 2/21/2018(UTC)
Guillermo  
#46 Posted : Wednesday, February 14, 2018 12:41:25 AM(UTC)
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Controlling the brown population might eventually require some vigilantism and targeted disregard of regulations. But you didn’t hear that from me.
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EddieRivard on 2/14/2018(UTC), s.t.fanatic on 2/21/2018(UTC)
NBrevitz  
#47 Posted : Wednesday, February 14, 2018 1:39:48 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: JGF Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: NBrevitz Go to Quoted Post
The one problem with ceasing the stocking of Pacific Salmon is that your one overwhelming control for Alewife is then largely gone, especially in Wisconsin. I agree 100% that it needs to get cut back, but with warmer winters and drastically less Salmon in the lake, the die offs will be immense. Lakers cannot naturally reproduce as long as there are Alewife in the lakes in any amount.


Lake Michigan is following the same trend as Lake Huron did a number of years ago when the Alewives crashed there. The food web has shift thanks to Quagga Mussels and Round Gobies. Fishes that eat gobies - lakers, Brown Trout, and a number of warmwater fishes are doing well. Salmon, I think, will crash as they did in Huron.

The reason we stock is that the charter guys complain if we don't. Something like 60% of the salmon (at least the Chinooks) in Lake Michigan are wild fish out of Michigan streams already. I see no reason that they can't keep up with the Alewives unless they make a major turnaround.


http://msue.anr.msu.edu/...and_trout_msg16_okeefe16

Lakers are spawning quite successfully again in Lake Michigan. They're doing quite well in Lake Huron. Problem is the charter guys don't like them.


Yes, partially due to the decline in Alewife, and I absolutely agree on Lake Michigan potentially turning into Lake Huron. That said, part of the reason for declining Alewife comes back to some really tough winters recently. 2010-11 was rough and 13-14/14-15 were shitkickers and it hit the Alewife hard. Reduce the stocking by 40-50% for 2-3 years, have a few warm-average winters, and the Alewife would more than bounce back.
I think Michigan could eventually reach a level where stocking isn’t required besides a few rivers, especially as streams like the Boardman have their dams removed. Pere Marquette, Crystal, Betsie, Muskegon, etc, all have lots of natural fish. That said, if you want Wisconsin to have any sort of the share, stocking is 100% necessary. I think there isn’t any natural reproduction over there besides a couple streams along the UP border, and even then they amount to a drop in the bucket. Zoo that it can be, the Root in November is a freakin blast.
"I fish because I love to: Because only in the woods can I find solitude without loneliness."
JGF  
#48 Posted : Wednesday, February 14, 2018 2:14:39 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: NBrevitz Go to Quoted Post

Yes, partially due to the decline in Alewife, and I absolutely agree on Lake Michigan potentially turning into Lake Huron. That said, part of the reason for declining Alewife comes back to some really tough winters recently. 2010-11 was rough and 13-14/14-15 were shitkickers and it hit the Alewife hard. Reduce the stocking by 40-50% for 2-3 years, have a few warm-average winters, and the Alewife would more than bounce back.
I think Michigan could eventually reach a level where stocking isn’t required besides a few rivers, especially as streams like the Boardman have their dams removed. Pere Marquette, Crystal, Betsie, Muskegon, etc, all have lots of natural fish. That said, if you want Wisconsin to have any sort of the share, stocking is 100% necessary. I think there isn’t any natural reproduction over there besides a couple streams along the UP border, and even then they amount to a drop in the bucket. Zoo that it can be, the Root in November is a freakin blast.


I fished the Root, once. That was enough for me. Sad

Over half the fish caught on the Wisconsin side are wild fish out of Michigan. To have a trib fisheries in Wisconsin, stocking is probably necessary. To have a viable charter fishery, it's probably not. To have a viable charter fishery, Alewives are necessary but we put the salmon in there to take care of them BigGrin

I think changes to the food web - so much of the biomass tied up on the bottom in Quaggas and Gobies - has a much bigger effect than do winters. Huron crashed for the same reasons Michigan is expected to crash.

The non-native salmon crashing probably gives the lake the best chance to restore some of the native fishes. Lake Michigan will never be what it once was. I don't think many Driftless streams and watershed will either. It's what we as people do - screw stuff up.
s.t.fanatic  
#49 Posted : Wednesday, February 21, 2018 4:00:30 AM(UTC)
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I just read through all of these posts and agree and disagree with plenty of it. The only thing I can say is given a chance nature will fix itself. We need to get out of the way and admit that we do not know better than mother nature. The biggest problem with this way of thinking is that we expect instant gratification in everything and think we are so much smarter than we really are.
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NE IA Drifter on 2/21/2018(UTC)
JGF  
#50 Posted : Thursday, February 22, 2018 10:38:39 PM(UTC)
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Lake Michigan Alewives hit record low: Paul Smith J-S article

Alewife population

Looking a lot like what happened in Lake Huron.
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