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Old 03-25-2020, 05:35 PM   #1
bbatch
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Question Salmon outlook

What's the outlook for salmon fishing this spring? I remember reading that there was a lost (stocking) class a while back. Will that effect this year's prospects?
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Old 03-25-2020, 05:39 PM   #2
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Default Catch and release?

A related question, what are thoughts on catch and release? Do people think it's better to allow the salmon to recover by a ban or would catch and release make enough of a difference? I don't like fish so have always released what I catch, and like to think I do it properly, but have seen others mishandle fish so badly they might as well have taken them home for dinner.
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Old 03-25-2020, 05:47 PM   #3
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A related question, what are thoughts on catch and release? Do people think it's better to allow the salmon to recover by a ban or would catch and release make enough of a difference? I don't like fish so have always released what I catch, and like to think I do it properly, but have seen others mishandle fish so badly they might as well have taken them home for dinner.
No ....... the Salmon are two fragile....... it would also foster the wrong impresion that you can catch a hunderd of them and be ok if you did not keep any.

The folks that fish for salmon could give you a 1000 better reasons. Salmon are not like Bass. Sounds great on paper but would never work. Not a good species for catch and release?

Edit: I think there may be a rule that even prevents this.
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Old 03-25-2020, 06:20 PM   #4
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In my opinion, this year will be the slowest year for catching salmon.

The good news is the Nashua hatchery has done a fantastic job of rearing this years smolt. They will be the largest stocked smolt in a number of years.

Age class recovery will begin this year but will take a couple more years before you really see a difference.

Regarding catch and release...if your fully versed in the proper handling and releasing of landlocked salmon, it certainly can’t hurt. If you need to have a picture of the fish while your holding it up by the gills, or your not using a rubber net, don’t bother.

Dan
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Old 03-25-2020, 06:40 PM   #5
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How does this years limited ice fishing season effect the upcoming fishing season?


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Old 03-25-2020, 07:17 PM   #6
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How does this years limited ice fishing season effect the upcoming fishing season?


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It doesnít in my opinion, at least not Winnipesaukee.

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Old 04-09-2020, 07:19 AM   #7
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A related question, what are thoughts on catch and release? Do people think it's better to allow the salmon to recover by a ban or would catch and release make enough of a difference?
I could see reducing the limit or maybe a slot limit. Wouldn't be a fan of catch and release only.
But a ban? Like banning fishing for a year? Please tell me you're not serious.
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Old 04-09-2020, 07:30 AM   #8
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I could see reducing the limit or maybe a slot limit. Wouldn't be a fan of catch and release only.
But a ban? Like banning fishing for a year? Please tell me you're not serious.
No, of course not! I have fished places where there is a ban on certain species. The idea is that people are not actively trying to catch some types of fish and if they do, must release. Not perfect as one can accidentally catch something they are not supposed to, but it has been effective in some places.

I was curious to hear from people much more knowledgeable that I about ideas to help the salmon population.

Iíll be fishing this weekend and am all for it. At the same time, I want my future grandchildren to be able to fish in clean waters with an abundant, healthy, and diverse fish stock so want to be sure my actions help support that goal.
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Old 04-13-2020, 08:52 AM   #9
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Default Salmon fishing this year

So far the salmon fishing has been spotty, but when you catch a fish it's a good one! We've boated 4 salmon, all between 3 and 3.5 lbs. No fish in the usual 2 - 2.5 lb range. There does appear to be a missing year class.
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Old 04-13-2020, 09:02 AM   #10
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So far the salmon fishing has been spotty, but when you catch a fish it's a good one! We've boated 4 salmon, all between 3 and 3.5 lbs. No fish in the usual 2 - 2.5 lb range. There does appear to be a missing year class.
The predominant salmon you are catching by a long shot is the 5 year old. The 5 year old, especially the males are big and beautiful! I have seen a few males caught in excess of 5 lbs! Lots of nice rainbows and lakers out there too!

Good luck!

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Old 04-13-2020, 10:51 AM   #11
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Don't give one up for the sake of a photo. But a few images if you can without damaging the fish would not hurt. I always found it a pain in the ass to take photos when your alone. The extra hands make a big difference getting a photo.
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Old 04-13-2020, 01:41 PM   #12
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Default Fishing Prospects for 2020

Hi;
I have been fishing, snorkeling, and scuba diving the lake for over 55 years(all species). With that number of years, I have seen a lot of changes...most, not good ones. The rapid(last 5-6 years) down-turn of both the Smallmouth and the Salmon fishery is tragic. Believe me, I know my craft.

My preferred method of fishing is drifted, or "slow-trolled" smelt or shiners .

I have had days where me and a buddy have caught and released close to 25 Salmon in 4-5 hours. One day in Center Harbor we caught and released 28 Salmon. we could only use 1 rod each. We had 3 "double-headers". For the last 5 years, we average, only, 1-3 per day. This year we have fished almost every day, so far, we are averaging 1-2 day. The 2 Lakers that we caught were both "Grossly" misshaped. The tails were bent....they looked like snakes.

I used to get all my "crayfish", for Smallmouth bass bait, amongst the many shore-line rocks. Well, there are, almost no crayfish anymore. As a result, the bass fishery is, also, way off. This was their prime food. The size of the bass that are left, is much smaller, and far fewer than past years.

I am heart-broken. I was hoping to spend the rest of my life fishing the big lake, I no longer keep any fish, and have developed the quickest, and most effective methods to "safely" release all my fish. Yes, I use that 8" plastic red hook disgorger" for deeply hooked fish. It takes practice to use it, but I can release over 80% of caught fish with no bleeding or damage.

The pics, attached, were taken when the fishing was better.
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Old 04-13-2020, 01:56 PM   #13
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Thank you for the pictures and the story of your experinces.
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Old 04-13-2020, 03:16 PM   #14
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I've noticed the significant decline in crawfish as well. What do you think is the reason?
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Old 04-13-2020, 03:26 PM   #15
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While I'm certianaly not a biologist, but I think it is partly a predator prey type of thing. With the explosion of rock bass, something had to collapse. That along with yellow perch.
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Old 04-13-2020, 03:31 PM   #16
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I've noticed the significant decline in crawfish as well. What do you think is the reason?
Plain and simple lake degradation !
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Old 04-13-2020, 04:29 PM   #17
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Default Fish

Winni Bob, spot on. I've been saying that for a few years now, on this and the winnifishing site. I caught my first fish on winni 60 years ago this spring. You nailed it, crayfish down, used to grab a dozen in the shoreline rocks in 30-40 minutes. Now I can't find ONE! Too many green lawns and septics are ruining the fishery. We used to C&R 25-30 salmon on a spring day. Now 2-3 and your doing well. Too many lake trout as well, seems to be way too many in my nets last 5-10 years, and now these rock bass. I don't have the answer, but I know guys like 308 and others seem to be taking an active role, which is fantastic, and I wish them well. Hopefully it will turn around!
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Old 04-13-2020, 05:05 PM   #18
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I've noticed the significant decline in crawfish as well. What do you think is the reason?
Hi;

As some of the responders have, already, mentioned, I think that the "rock bass" explosion has contributed. It is known that they forage on new-born crayfish, newts, and other invertebrates. They have, unusually, large mouths, for their size, and can swallow even larger lake dwellers. They are awful "bait-stealers". When using crayfish or helgramites, it's costly when you lose a bait that cost you $ 1.00 ea.
No question, the pollution in the lake is awful. Horizontal visibility, underwater, used to be near 30-40' back 40-50 years ago. Today, you're lucky to be able to see 10' in front of you. In case you didn't know, the various beaches around the lake (including the Weirs, Gilford, etc) have been closed for the past several years due to coliform bacteria. Phytoplankton, also, adds to the poor water quality. Also, last year there were no lifeguards at any of the beaches. The kids that usually oversee the beaches don't even apply anymore, and they are offered $18/hr plus Free "life-saving" courses. Daily exposure at the beaches was causing them to break out with sores.
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Old 04-13-2020, 05:20 PM   #19
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Default Crayfish

As a kid we regularly caught yellow perch and smallmouth. Anytime we kept something to eat (usually for my grandmother), we put the head and guts in the crayfish trap and always caught enough for the next day's adventure. I don't think my kids have even seen a crayfish in the lake.

Last edited by Garcia; 04-13-2020 at 05:22 PM. Reason: forgot something
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:43 PM   #20
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Very interesting thread going here. Certainly some valid points. I've been fishing the lake for 50 years myself but in the past few years not much. To many guys and fewer decent fish kinda drove me out of it. Lot of things have changed for sure as illustrated above. Bass fishing is terrible now. Back in the 70's and 80's, 3 and 4 lb smallies were very common. Now that's a monster. But back in 70's 80's we didn't have bass tournaments. Yes crayfish were everywhere. Used to love hunting for them. Now we see none. I was always was a Salmon and Lake trout guy though. Nothing like it. But back in those days of the 70's and 80's there were a fraction of people and fraction of boats on the lake that there are now so things are going to change. Everyone trolled live bait, Fly's, Mooselooks or Chev Chase's. That pretty much all you found in AJ's back then. One thing not mentioned though is how we as fisherman also contribute to stress on the fishery. Back in "old days" most of us all fished in 12-16 ft starcraft rowboats with a 6-15 hsp motor trolling for endless hours with mono or leadcore. Now you see very few of these setups. Everyone is out there in nice 20-26ft cuddy cabins rigged up with fish finders, down riggers, planer boards lures in all shapes, colors, and sizes. Gps for the best trolling speeds and marking the hot spots. Man the fish don't have a chance! All good fun though. For me though, as in last weekend, for spring fishing I have reverted back to that starcraft!
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Old 04-14-2020, 02:52 PM   #21
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Hi;

As some of the responders have, already, mentioned, I think that the "rock bass" explosion has contributed. It is known that they forage on new-born crayfish, newts, and other invertebrates.
^^^^^^ THIS is why you donít see crayfish any more. ^^^^^^^^^

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Old 05-08-2020, 09:28 PM   #22
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Default Thoughts on the future

so where do you all think the lakeís fishery is headed in the next 5 to 10 yrs. Will it be bounce around to the hottest lakes that year. To have reasonable success.or go to Squam and others that are hotter that year..love to hear your thoughts on where we are headed. Thanks in advance. I Been holding onto a collection of Jim warmer streamers For my retirement year of fishing and possibly I waited a decade or so to long.
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Old 05-08-2020, 11:11 PM   #23
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Default Salmon fishery outlook for the future

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so where do you all think the lake’s fishery is headed in the next 5 to 10 yrs. Will it be bounce around to the hottest lakes that year. To have reasonable success.or go to Squam and others that are hotter that year..love to hear your thoughts on where we are headed. Thanks in advance. I Been holding onto a collection of Jim warmer streamers For my retirement year of fishing and possibly I waited a decade or so to long.
Hi;

I have fished, snorkeled, and scuba-dove the lake for over 55 years. The quality and the number of Salmon & Bass have been deteriorating every year. The pollution and the handling of the fishery are awful. I cry every time I go fishing now. Sorry for the bad news.

Winni Bob
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Old 05-15-2020, 08:50 PM   #24
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so where do you all think the lakeís fishery is headed in the next 5 to 10 yrs. Will it be bounce around to the hottest lakes that year. To have reasonable success.or go to Squam and others that are hotter that year..love to hear your thoughts on where we are headed. Thanks in advance. I Been holding onto a collection of Jim warmer streamers For my retirement year of fishing and possibly I waited a decade or so to long.
Jim Warner. Nice guy and a fishing legend. I bought a house from him when he was selling real estate in his later years. He gave me a collection of flies and a letter about each one at the closing. I wish I still had them. May he Rest In Peace.
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Old 05-17-2020, 07:57 AM   #25
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These are the good old days...
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Old 06-18-2020, 03:26 PM   #26
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Hey Winni Bob,
Judging by your picture, you appear to be over your limit.
Care to explain?
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Old 06-18-2020, 08:17 PM   #27
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Hey Winni Bob,
Judging by your picture, you appear to be over your limit.
Care to explain?
Not speaking for WB but thatís a baseless, accusation...between myself my wife and both brothers, we had an 8 fish morning last season.
Hard to believe but we fishermen do take out guests...
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Old 06-21-2020, 06:04 PM   #28
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Default Secondcurve

Jimís flys weíre great. I agree he was also a super guy and always willing to give advice. Iím getting ready to retire soon. Be up there full time so itís a bit disappointing to read the salmon stories. I still have original Jim Warnerís ,some never used in the holder.ill upload a photo if I can. Best of luck
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Old 06-22-2020, 09:12 AM   #29
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Jimís flys weíre great. I agree he was also a super guy and always willing to give advice. Iím getting ready to retire soon. Be up there full time so itís a bit disappointing to read the salmon stories. I still have original Jim Warnerís ,some never used in the holder.ill upload a photo if I can. Best of luck
Still some beauties being caught and the smolt stocking size bodes well for the future!
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