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randyfishing
09-27-2005, 12:18 PM
As we all know these fish are a nasty invasive species. What is the legal or DFG standpoint and should I be chuckin' them up into the willows for coon food? What do you folks know about this. I thought it was not legal to throw out any fish, invasive and non-native or not. I often find big ole carp stinkin' up the beach too :P

Your thoughts? ;)

drstressor
09-27-2005, 12:35 PM
First, the Sacramento Squawfish or Pike Minnow is a native Californian, unlike most of the fishermen. ;)

They are very prolific and well adapted to most of the waters where they are found. You could never put a dent in their populations by trying to fish them out. They are only perceived to be a problem where migrating salmon have to migrate downstream through dams. That doesn't happen in California, only in Washington State. The dams become artificial feeding stations for squawfish (which they put a bounty on) and smallmouth bass and walleye (which they don't like to blame for eating salmon).

So it's an individual decision whether to release them alive or watch them die an agonizing death by slow suffocation on the bank. It really makes little difference to the ecology of the stream, lake, or river.

ghostfish_slayer
09-27-2005, 01:54 PM
while on the eel i saw a warden put a sucker fish back in the water that somebody threw up on the bank.i wasn't me.he then took the squaw fish that was right next to it and tossed it up farther on the bank.i asked him about both and he replied the suckers don't eat the eggs like the squaw do.i was thinking to myself,thats why i catch so many suckers on roe..

Rusty_Hooks
09-27-2005, 02:50 PM
They make great fertilizer for fruit trees ;D

and......if you bury enough of them in your garden space...

your tomatoes will turn into "attack plants".

(after the racoons finish digging the garden for you, looking for the fish...LOL)

fishnmike2002
09-27-2005, 03:49 PM
There is one location I know of in CA where the migrating salmon have to go over a dam, Its Woodbridge Dam on the Mokelumune River. They are studying how to limit the squawfish predation at this location.

FishnMike

Mr_Ed
09-27-2005, 07:19 PM
If I'm not mistaken, I thought that you could get paid for catching squawfish, by the F&G on one of the Calif rivers? Someone told me this and I said ,"get paid to catch fish?"
Sorry can't remember where. Hay Randy; if you can't figure out where to put your squawfish, I will give you the plate # of my ex's car!!!! Later Ed

Silver_Hilton
09-27-2005, 08:14 PM
Doc - is it possible we're talking about multiple species (or subspecies) of Pikeminnow?

I've always thought to kill them, but have followed the precident of certain guides, and stuff I read from Friends of the Eel (pikeminnow page here: http://www.eelriver.org/html/publications_article_28.html). According to that website, the species Ptychocheilus oregonensis is a non-native to the Eel. Using my amazing latin skills ::), I would say this species is an Oregon "centered" species (and is also the nemesis of the Columbia Salmon smolt at the damns).

So is the Ptychocheilus grandis (Sacramento pikeminnow) unique to the Sacramento/San Joaquin drainages only? Possible that there were North Coast rivers w/o Squawfish?.

Mr. Ed - Eel River has a once-a-year summer-long, drainage wide pikeminnow derby with cash prizes...which now also has DFG support (same website above).

One of my "magic moments" was watching a small hawk (kestral?) swoop onto the bank to pick up a recently tossed squawfish, and lumbering away across the river with it.....

/this may be headed towards a Fish Issues thread....

drstressor
09-27-2005, 08:33 PM
Yes, there are many species of Pike Minnow. Just about every drainage has it's owns species since they don't migrate out to sea. Some coastal rivers do not have squawfish and they have been introduced in others such as the Eel. I assumed that Randy was talking about the Sac system.

Blaming the decline of salmon on predatory species is an old saw. The decline is the result of many factors. And I'll stand by my statement that hook and line fishing will not make a significant dent in their population. It's just a feel good thing to kill every squawfish you catch. You can't do anything about water diversion, pollution, headwater logging, dams, ocean intercept fisheries, or global warming. But you can throw every one of the dam* squawfish up on the bank. ;)

The normal rate of predation of salmon fry and smolts even in relatively undisturbed rivers in Alaska and BC is to the order of 96% or higher. That means that less than 4 out of every 100 salmon that hatch make it back to the ocean. Even without squawfish in the system.

Silver_Hilton
09-27-2005, 08:53 PM
It's just a feel good thing to kill every squawfish you catch. You can't do anything about water diversion, pollution, headwater logging, dams, ocean intercept fisheries, or global warming. But you can throw every one of the dam* squawfish up on the bank. ;)


Agreed...many factors. But we can make a dent in each of those - and tossing the fish provides the most immediate satisfaction 8) .....Thx.

jdogg
09-28-2005, 09:51 AM
us humans are the BIGGEST factor of the declining salmon. :'(

catfished
09-28-2005, 10:17 AM
I started this thread since I primarily fish the Russian River. *That is all I catch excepting the occasional smallmouth all summer. *Looks like we have a mixed response. *I have been letting them go but may start feeding them to the coons. *I have only caught one sucker on a worm down at Monte Rio. *I would like to see more native and less invasive but there is a bigger picture, the four H's. *I was also wondering if it is legal or not, will check the regs. *Thanks for the input folks. :)

Hi Randyfishing,

I thought all bait fishing was prohibited on the Russian River except during steelhead season? I have heard this from several different sources but of course, that doesn't make it so>

catfished
09-29-2005, 09:08 AM
And did I say I was using bait out of season ::) *Second time this week I have been falsely accused and abused of such. *Caught the sucker on a worm, in November. *Good thing I have a sense of humor ;D or I could get real >:(

Hey Randy, I did not mean to accuse you of anything. I'm sorry that you read it that way. I just wanted to find out for sure whether or not bait was prohibited. I was hoping that I was misinformed and that bait was legal.

Peace brother 8)

Flipper266
09-29-2005, 10:49 AM
Catfish in the Russian?
Man I am going to have to go give it a shot!

Diego916
09-29-2005, 12:33 PM
Tossing a fish up on the bank sounds like a waste of fish to me. At least kill it and throw it back in, or use it for bait.

catfished
09-29-2005, 02:16 PM
author=Randyfishing link=board=fresh_gen;num=1127852297;start=0#14 date=09/29/05 at 11:17:29]Well my apologies for being a cranky baiter :P (yuk yuk)

So what strech f hte river do you fish, do you target catfish? *I have always felt that the rules are mixed up, should use bait in the summer to catch carp and catfish and no bait when the endangered fish are in the system.


Actually, the few times that I've fished the Russian in the last few years , I was targetting carp for catch & release sport but I didn't catch any. Fished several spots from Hollydale to Monte Rio. I used corn for bait in the summer since I was not aware of the law (ridiculous IMHO) Thankfully I did not run into a warden. :-[

Pimpinmeat
09-29-2005, 05:17 PM
Did I just see Randy get snippy :P I think somebody needs a nap ;D ;D ;D

I've watch the suckers stack up behind the redds on the Feather and I don't think they do that so they can smell salmon butts all day. I have mixed feelings about this because I don't like to see things go to waste. When I see holding below the salmon and I catch one, I reluctantly toss them on shore. At one point this year I hooked 6 while swinging an egg sucking leach and I only threw 1 up. It's all part of a cycle that's been taking place for ever so why screw with it. That's how we get into to trouble with mother nature. As far as the sqauw fish go, I'm all for keeping there cycle of life going by throwing them back with a big hook in them waiting for a striper to notice it;D

Pimpinmeat
09-29-2005, 05:19 PM
One other thing Randy, when I start coming up for steelhead, your more than welcome to join me for a day. I'll do my best to help you catch a real fish. ;)

drstressor
09-29-2005, 08:13 PM
Getting back to ethics, if anyone really wants to know, I destroy every non-native fish that I catch in waters where there are natural populations of indigenous fish. That includes brown trout and brookies. The only exception I make is with artificial fisheries in reservoirs. I'll throw browns back at Stampede and Hellhole for other folks to catch. But every one I catch at Independence is toast.

Given that principle, if I was fishing the feather where they are native, I'd let any squawfish go. In the Eel, every one I catch would be take home for fertilizer. Throwing fish up on a bank in a heavily used areas is sort of like leaving garbage behind. But I have left brookies for the coons and ravens in wilderness streams where they compete with native cutthroat.

Before you guys go off on me, I never exceed a gamefish limit or a collecting permit.

Finesse
10-01-2005, 03:24 PM
First, the Sacramento Squawfish or Pike Minnow is a native Californian, unlike most of the fishermen. ;)

They are very prolific and well adapted to most of the waters where they are found. You could never put a dent in their populations by trying to fish them out. They are only perceived to be a problem where migrating salmon have to migrate downstream through dams. That doesn't happen in California, only in Washington State. The dams become artificial feeding stations for squawfish (which they put a bounty on) and smallmouth bass and walleye (which they don't like to blame for eating salmon).

So it's an individual decision whether to release them alive or watch them die an agonizing death by slow suffocation on the bank. It really makes little difference to the ecology of the stream, lake, or river.



very well put..we could argue allday..there are just some fisherman that don't get it, and never will either ::) to them there junk fish and need to be gone cause there not "native" but as said before they are native, unlike the Rainbow trout that takes over many streams that are inhabited by native fish they are very vulnerable to environment changes and competition for food, such as the Golden trout ;).hey lets kill the Rainbow trout also while were at it ;)j/k!! im just sayin thats all ;) ;D

Seceret_hole
10-01-2005, 10:07 PM
Tossing a fish up on the bank sounds like a waste of fish to me. At least kill it and throw it back in, or use it for bait.
Amen to that!

Trout_Terminator
10-02-2005, 12:20 AM
throwing fish up on a bank... the fishing gods are going to look down apon you, remember, every time you throw a fish on the bank, you have to throw a beer in the water, so i wouldent throw any fish on the Bank! throw them in a swimming pool and charge money, like lake amador ;D. lol, no but seriously, if a fish is like that, and they distroy a population, i will do my part like Doc.

pulseczar
10-02-2005, 10:42 AM
I heard that it's unlawful to waste fish, but I also think I got that from the saltwater guide.

I like the idea of planting the fish though. They make good fertilizer and I learned in 2nd grade that Squanto taught the pilgrims to put fish in along with seeds to have a better crop. ;D

Sierra_hillbilly
10-02-2005, 08:14 PM
Okay Doc I have a question about how you feel about squawfish that are so thick you cant catch any other fish in lakes. Slab creek for example is full of squawfish. Catching trout in that lake is darn near impossible. The squawfish eat everything they see. The dam is man made. Would this be a diffrent story where you would grind them up for nitrogen???

drstressor
10-02-2005, 08:36 PM
My point is just that you can't fish them out. They aren't as dependent on ideal water conditions for spawning like trout. If the habitat is good for them, they fill up a niche until maximum biomass is reached. Take out 100 and by the next year another hundred will replace them. Luckily, they don't do as well as trout in cold, fast moving water. Build a dam and their population usually explodes.

If you can use them for something, there is no reason not to take as many as you want.

FreshwaterFrank
10-05-2005, 04:30 AM
The pike minnows haven't been noticeably overabundant in Melones, but at certain times I will catch them while trolling for trout uplake. The S.Fork seems to be particularly attractive to them. I've never caught a small one, either...they're always at least 18" long. Several years ago I met this guy that worked at the marina, who said he'd take any I caught. Over the years I'd stop @ the marina & give him any squawfish I'd bagged, & he was always happy as a clam & said he smoked them up & they were real tasty...if bony. Unfortunately he doesn't work there anymore, & I've been threatening to try smoking one up myself, but so far have not had the nerve for it. Anyone ever eaten one & want to give a report?

Ikan_Mas
10-05-2005, 06:55 PM
Slack Water = Pike Minnow. Pike Minnow are native in the Columbia River system. Once the dams went in and the river turned into a big barge channel, the Pike Minnows went to town. I used to live in Richland and the PM were just thick there in the backwaters of the dams. One day I ran into an old fellow laying out a gill net upriver of Hanford. As he started to pull it in, I asked what he was after. He replied he was a commercial carp, sucker, and squawfish fisherman. Apparently he had tapped into a variety of markets that sell them. As he pulled the net in, I could see it was fully of thousands of these fish. It was amazing how productive the Columbia was for the wrong type of fish. I assume that before the dams, it was equally as productive for trout and salmon.

Leaving the squawfish on the shore only encourages the jerks that leave their fishing line, beer bottles, and cigarette butts behind. >:( These are the same people that don't bother with licenses and poach at will. Take them home and plant them in the garden or cut them loose. At Los Vaqueros I give the carp I catch to the interperative center and they feed them to the eagles and ospreys. No waste there. :)

Trout_Terminator
10-06-2005, 03:06 PM
I still think that we should build a pond a thorw those suckers in it, and have like take a kid fishing... heck every one would catch something!

FreshwaterFrank
10-06-2005, 03:34 PM
Good Idea! Like Amador, and charge 'em money too.

wetdog254
12-09-2005, 10:49 PM
Has anyone ever considered them as a sport fish. Spring time thousands of them go into the small creeks to spawn. They get huge. 29" is my current record from this spring. These spring spawners average around 18-22" inches in the creek near my house. They hit super hard, but the fight is fast and shortlived. Still great fun though. I release all of the ones I catch, they are from the Sac river drainage.

wetdog254
12-09-2005, 10:55 PM
http://momentoffame.com/photopost/data/526/00pikeminnow.jpg
Danny

JRG
12-13-2005, 12:12 PM
I never understood why people would waste a fish like that. Mankind is the problem here, we create the conditions ideal for that kind of species to be so prolific and introduce them to non-native water ways. In their native watersheds they have coexisted just fine long before mankind stopped dragging our knuckles around.
The poor fish doesn't deserve to die like that. Have some d@$n respect for nature for once. Be happy you caught something, and release the fish or at least make some use of it in the garden. And if you see me catch one on the river and tell me to throw it on the bank, I will punch you square in the mouth for even thinking I am such an indecent person as to let some fish die like that in it's home waters.
Non-native waters, this is a different story. If they are problematic then yes, do what you will but don't blame the damn fish for doing what they have evolved to do. We created the problem, blame all the idiot politicians/greedy a#$holes who won't do a d@#n thing to help fisheries out. Look at the giant fish kills in 2002, did squawfish do that?? No. It's not natures fault we are sucking the planet dry because we won't take the necessary steps to curb our population growth... Sorry, for the rant, just tired of seeing how nature gets the shaft from us pretty much everyday....

jon_may
12-13-2005, 01:31 PM
Danny, where is that creek? i'd like to have a crack at 'em...99% of all fishing i do is c&r (including salmon, sturgeon,striper) so i don't care what the species- i just wanna' SET THE HOOK!!!!
hell,8lb test and a %^&#load of pike sounds GREAT to me!

wetdog254
12-13-2005, 03:21 PM
It is from little cow creek around Redding. *I don't know a whole lot about what creeks they spawn in, I know they do in a lot of creeks around Shasta County. *Not much research has been done on Pikeminnows. *But I know they like warmwater, slow water, and spawn in creeks in the spring, if you can't find where they spawn, you know they are in the Sac year around even up here in Redding where the water is coldest. Smaller ones will stay in the little warm creeks all summer, but the big boys head back to the river when the water gets low. *Great fun!

Danny