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Smallmouth Bass Harvest


Jim J
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From: TRENT THOMAS

 

Subject: Smallmouth Bass Harvest

 

Hi Guys,

 

Next Thursday, October 12, we will be harvesting another smallmouth bass

rearing pond. The pond is southwest of Farmer City. The harvest of this

pond is not very glorious. It usually entails a lot of sitting and

waiting most of the day and mad panic at the end, which usually requires

treading through knee-deep mud to save adult breeders. We can always use

the help, so you are welcome to come out if you would like. We will be

there early, but I wouldn't plan on being there for the harvest until

mid-morning (after 10am). Directions below.

 

The following day, Friday October 13, we will again be fin-clipping the

smallmouth bass that are harvested from this pond. I can't make any

predictions, but this is the first year that the pond was dedicated only

to smallmouth bass. So, there is definitely a potential to get a good

number of smallmouth bass from the pond this year. We will be meeting at

the Lake Shelbyville dam (East side parking lot) at about 9:30am to

fin-clip these fish before stocking them and the adults back into the

river.

 

I just completed two days of smallmouth bass surveys on the Kaskaskia

River, and the stocking program appears to be working wonders for the

population. Catch rates below the dam have quadrupled and catch rates

near the campground have tripled since the initiation of stocking four

years ago. Many of the stocked fish reached breeding age this year,

which likely accounted for an increase in "wild-produced" fish as well.

I appreciate all the help the Illinois Smallmouth Alliance has provided

to make this project successful!

 

Direction to the Farmer City Rearing Pond:

 

From I-74 or Highway 150, go South on Highway 54 into Farmer City. At

the stop sign at Casey's in Farmer City, turn South and head out of

town. Less than a mile out of town, you will cross Salt Creek and South

Branch Salt Creek. Take your first right after crossing these streams.

This road will take you southwest until it turns south at 2400 E. Soon

after turning south on 2400 E, there will be a small gravel parking lot

on the right (west) side of the road. Turn into this parking lot and

through the wire gate. Drive back (unless it is very wet) because it is

a decent distance to walk. Do not turn onto any of the roads veering off

to the right, and you will end up at the 5-acre pond.

 

Thank you and hope to see you soon.

 

Trent

IDNR

 

TRENT.THOMAS@illinois.gov

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From: TRENT THOMAS

 

Subject: Smallmouth Bass Harvest

 

 

 

Dave Franklin e-mailed me and he is unable to attend.

 

I want to be there but I have a trip to Arkansas that week. Thats two years I have missed this and I really think it would be interesting and fun.

 

Is there anyone planning to attend?

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Guess it depends on your point of view.

 

If you think a chance to see and handle snapping turtles, and crayfish and dragonfly larvae big enough to eat a fish, aquatic animals of all kinds (including the breeders which are genuine pigs) are interesting...then it's interesting.

 

Muddy? Yes. Fun? It is to me.

 

Trent will be pretty anxious that we not kill any fish.

 

Sounds like an interesting day indeed! Wish I could get out of work!

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Sounds like an interesting day indeed! Wish I could get out of work!

 

Fortunately, although I don't get paid to do this specific thing, this is part of my work so I'll be there unless some emergency pops up.

 

I do hope some more people can make it. My son helped me drain pond experiments when he was 5. That's something he still remembers.

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