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Lake Michigan, Milwaukee County (all postings)

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midnight
midnight
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7/23/14 10:36 AM CST
STAKEHOLDER AND AGENCY GOALS AND OBJECTIVES Stakeholders from Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin first met with fishery managers in the spring of 2011 to discuss goals and objectives for the Lake Michigan fishery. Meetings were held in Michigan and Wisconsin in April and June, respectively. Agency Goals and Objectives • Maintain acceptable catch rates (8-12 fish/100 hrs) • Maintain a diverse fishery (>50% Chinook; >25% other species) • Maintain good salmon growth (Age 3 Chinook > 7 kg [15.4 lbs>, in late summer) • Maintain alewife at or below undesirable levels • Maintain adequate spawning stock biomass for lake trout.

http://www.in.gov/dnr/fishwild/files/fw-Lake_Michigan_Stocking_2012.pdf

that pdf link gives totals for all species stocked in lake michigan combined and by all the states individual from 1976 to 2012....from 2010 to 2012 roughly 3.2 million each year for chinooks so no real decline.....2013 was decreased overall by roughly 35% so that is (will be) a huge drop off

in the above "strategy" outlined above we are in trouble over the next several years if they consider 8-12 fish per 100 hours fished acceptable...you are already complaining if you aren't getting 1 fish every 2 hours of fishing vs. their goal of 1 fish per 10 hours of fishing

AUSTIN RAGOTZKIE
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7/23/14 10:18 AM CST
Yep. I remember slamming kings in 35 FOW in April right outside the north gap that year. Good times!


Blue Ribbon Outdoors
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MuskyHunter
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7/23/14 10:07 AM CST
How was that winter and spring of 2012? As I recall I was wearing shorts and a t shirt for St Party's that year. This year I was shoveling snow.

Rempump
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7/23/14 10:07 AM CST
Here is a link to the stocking numbers- The numbers do appear to be down.

http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/fishing/Documents/LakeMichigan/StockingSummary2009.pdf

AUSTIN RAGOTZKIE
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7/23/14 9:49 AM CST
Also port stocking numbers vary from year to year. The number you really want to see is the total number of chinooks that WI stocked in years past.


Blue Ribbon Outdoors
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AUSTIN RAGOTZKIE
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7/23/14 9:47 AM CST
So here's one for ya.... Show me the 2008 and 2007 stocking numbers and prove it's less. Also I'm not saying we won't see a fishing slow down with stocking cuts, because of course we will. But we're not seeing it yet in mature fish. Next year and the year after will truly tell the tale of stocking cuts. Also if stocking was so low in 2009 then the mature king numbers in 2012 should have been way down, but as I recall that was a fantastic year for numbers.


Blue Ribbon Outdoors
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boscrowe
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7/23/14 9:45 AM CST
In 2008 from what I found only 58,000 stocked and looking back and talking to fisherman people say 2012 was a great yr . But I'm on the fence on the topic . One thought I have one hypothesis if no thermocline and fish are very difficult target to me the 3 yr olds that people are getting are around 12-15 lbs so if there more difficult to catch but there is a good supply food for them next years season should great for some really big fish .

Fish Hound
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7/23/14 9:27 AM CST
I simply posted Milwaukee County as an example because it is on the Milwaukee thread, they didn't cut back Milwaukee and keep everything else at normal levels.

MuskyHunter
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7/23/14 9:23 AM CST
So the fish stay in the port in which they were stocked? Ha! of the tagged fish I caught in Milwaukee last year, they came from Milwaukee/Racine, Illinois and Michigan.

You really don't think one of the coldest winters on record has anything to do with scattered fish?

Prfish
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7/23/14 9:15 AM CST
If this is true why so many bait fish pods everywhere the last 2 years i would hope smelt and pearch like long time ago but i dought it

Fish Hound
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7/23/14 9:07 AM CST
First year of stocking cutbacks????? Have you gentlemen had your head in the sand?

Here are some number for Chinook stocked in Milwaukee County only:

2009 - 113,946

2010 - 114,440

2011 - 115,729

2012 - 99,804

2013 - 74,646

2014 - 83,046

2014 is slightly up only because quota was taken from other Wisconsin locations, look at the reduced stocking numbers statewide since 2011 and I think maybe you'll realize we are only at the beginning of the effects of the cutbacks with many more years of this fishing to come even if they changed it now.

[This post was last edited on 7/23/14 at 9:24 AM]
AUSTIN RAGOTZKIE
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7/23/14 8:18 AM CST
I'm with musky hunter on this one. There is literally no possible way that we are experiencing the effects of stocking cuts right now unless we are talking about the catch rates of 1 and 2 year old kings. 2013 ( last year) was the first year of stocking cuts. The stocking records are public and anyone can ask for them or look them up online. I invite you all to do so and see that up until last year they remained the same as they were for the last 10 or so years. Unless there is some super strain of kings in the lake that I'm now aware of that grows from 12 inches to 20 lbs in a year we are in no way seeing an effect yet on mature fish.

Also it had been 4 years now since just about all stocked chinooks have had their adipose fin clipped so you can pretty much bank on the fact that every king you catch that has an adipose fin is wild. This to me is really exciting as I have been keeping track all year and up to this point around 70% of the kings caught into boat have been wild. This is awesome news for our fishery as the wild fish on average seem to be about 2-4 lbs bigger then the same year class stocked ones we get. I'm sure it has to do with them adapting to our habitat and allowing natural selection to take its course. Hopefully we can continue to see this trend in more wild fish continue.

Yes the fishing has been tough this year, but when is the last time we have had consistently ice cold water this close to august? I'm not saying the weather is the all be it factor here but it sure has something to do with it. And who knows maybe these wild fish are just smarter than stocked ones of the past, haha. I for one have noticed that this year I am doing consistently better with smaller spreads. For instance last weekend I caught more fish by myself with 3 lines out than I did all week before running spreads of 9-12 lines. Mabybe we just need to stealth up a bit? Who knows. Either way I'm not giving up hope that this year will turn around yet.

I wish everyone the best of luck and see you all on the water, or better yet at the cleaning station for a beer afterwards!


Blue Ribbon Outdoors
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Prfish
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7/23/14 6:11 AM CST
I agree less stockings are not better and this has neen going on for 3 to 4 years that i remember bigger is not always better look how many complaints by genereal publik with all beaches covered this spring with dead fish

chintastic
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7/23/14 6:08 AM CST
Jason,

I completely agree! Simply put, Wisconsin's lake Michigan fishery is "put and take". I find it ironic that the WDNR reduce stockings in 2012 due to low forage (alewife) populations, yet they are asking for public input when it comes time for the 2015-2024 lake Michigan strategic plan.

Where are all the so called "big" fish this year?! Last year there were plenty of 30lbers taken by this time. About the only thing I have noticed is a stronger lake trout population, and bigger than average steelhead.

MuskyHunter
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7/23/14 3:54 AM CST
How can reduced stocking for 1 year cause issues with fishing right now? They are not stocking 4 year olds? I could consider a complaint in a year or 2 but not now.

Jason, I'm only asking you this because you are a charter and probably see a larger quantity of fish caught that the regular guy, but have you turned in any heads to the dnr from clipped fish?

Displaying Posts 1 through 15 of 10,447


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