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Green River Surveys

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I got word from Karen at the IDNR late yesterday that they were rushing to complete the Green River surveys ahead of schedule due to the threat of more rain this week. She had called in help from other DNR regions and they had plenty of experienced guys. Still- I took the chance today to see if I could catch up with them and managed to find them at noon just heading to the final sight near Colona.


I was able to jump in and help them launch the boat and then acted as "spotter" trying to point out the stunned fish so they could net them. We covered about a 40yd stretch of a small tributary creek (Mineral Creek) at Rt 6. Aside from a 20 inch Flathead Cat, the other 60 or so fish were about evenly split between average sized White Suckers and significantly sized Creek Chubs, plus 2 Grass Pike (cool little mini-northerns- when I say mini- I mean 5-6 inch and I understand that's pretty much how big they get).


As I went to help load the boat I thought I heard them call out a smallmouth- if so, we're talking 5 inches cause that's all that was left in the bucket when I left. They did tell me that they had one site yesterday that had a number of smallmouth of healthy size in the 14-15 range. It confirms what we already know and that is that the Green and it's tributaries do hold a number of smallmouth of good size (I've caught them between 14-18 inches every year).


The most disappointing thing I heard is that the EPA won't publish the numbers for over a year- your tax dollars efficiently at work. I also overheard one of the older DNR employees kid with another about the EPA guys as follows. "Is the EPA sampling these waters as well?" Other guy, "I don't know,they don't always show up when they're supposed to." First guy, "They're not from Rockford are they"? (chuckles all around). I took this to be a dig regarding the EPA and some rumors floating around that the EPA in Rockford is intentionally avoiding any real investigation that might link the train wreck in Rockford, it's subsequent spill, and the fish kill on the Rock a couple days later. Might be reading too much into it, but color me cynical.



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I'm glad you were able to participate in the survey. I was hoping to participate on Thursday, sounds like they were ahead of schedule. Karen Rivera from the IDNR will be sharing with me later this month the survey schedule for Mississippi River tributaries south of the quad cities. I will keep the western region posted regarding that survey effort.




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