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Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

Joined:
2010/3/29 6:56
From Portage, PA
Posts: 1441
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First I will appologize for my recent attacks on TU. These are mostly biased oppinions and not 100% rational. I will appologize for offending any of you. I get wound up easy when my family's club get dragged down or bashed.

That being said: I would like to ask you guys, that are deeply involved in the conservation efforts of your club:

What ways, besides the typical clean up do you make improvements to your trout streams?



I have a stream close to my home that is on the rebound, raw sewage, dish liquid, washing detergent, all of that used to be dumped in the stream. In the last few years there have been major improvements to the sewer systems and now there is no discharge from houses and such that flow into this stream. There is an effort to clean up the lower end of this stream from AMD but what can I do for the upper end that is fishable.

What are ways that I can improve this stream besides your average clean up of litter. The stream can hold trout year round, and as of today the fish are still healthy. I managed 4 with 1 bow about 16", 2 about 11", and a brown about ten. All were caught on red beadhead pheasant tails with red wire. One was caught on a coyote streamer.

It is nothing for me to catch hold overs all the way up until the first day and some hold overs I know are 2 years old. Not only do the smaller trout survive but I catch many of the 2 year olds as well in these winter months.

I love going to this stream and being able to catch fish year round. It is not PA approved trout waters, and has no real presence of Wild trout that I have ever noticed, There is a Class A stream that runs into this stream as well, that provides cold water and refuge in the summer months.

Anyone care to enlighten me on ways to improve this stream and give the trout a hand. I think this small stream, with no presence of wild fish could become a project for me to take on. THe abundance of trout that are stocked through our co-op and a firemans fishing rodeo is pretty high. There is a decent amount of harvest, but not so bad that it gets totally wiped out.

THere are many hatches that come off like caddis, midges, sulfurs, and a few various mayflies i do not know. There is also an abundance of baitfish and other aquatic life, that get these fish through the year. I would say the stream on average is about 15-20 ft wide. There are a few deep pools around -2 to 3 feet and one or two that are 4-5'. There are 2 railroad trussles that have large holes under them as well. There is decent cover for the trout but i have seen the water temperatures get a little high now and again in the summer.

I want to make an effort to really improve this stream, and have it provide great fishing for many years to come. Please give me examples of what you have done to improve streams in your area. Any advice is appreciated.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 13:09
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Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

Joined:
2010/3/29 6:56
From Portage, PA
Posts: 1441
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I hope to put a little time in each week this year to improve the stream one way or another. I want to first of all try and get a stream clean up going. I want to get some of the brush and things cleared out to improve fishing a bit as well. I thought about creating a few stream side improvements to add the possiblility of people in wheel chairs to be able to fish. THese are no brainers in my oppinion but i am looking more on helping the over all health of the fish and the habibat and ecosystem of the stream itself.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 13:13
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"There he stands, draped in more equipment than a telephone lineman, trying to outwit an organism with a brain no bigger than a breadcrumb, and getting licked in the process."



Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

Joined:
2007/3/29 7:56
From Bethlehem, PA
Posts: 334
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Mike-

I am not super knowledgeable about stream improvements, but I do know any time you do anything IN the stream you need a permit. I would start by contacting your local WCO and see what they have to say about the stream. They may not suggest anything directly, but often know who to contact. Good luck.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 13:47
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Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

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2006/9/9 15:10
From Bucks County or Bridgeville
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Im 99% sure I know the stream that you are talking about. From what I can remember there is two or three sections with no trees. I beleive that two of those sections are right of ways but the upper one was the area downstream stream of a modeern concrete bridge. A tree or so could go a long way in those places. I never went any higher than that bridge so I don't know what is up there.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 14:14


Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

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2009/2/17 21:02
From Landisville
Posts: 186
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ebroe is correct, you will need permits for any in stream improvements. And land owner permission for stream side work. I would start with the WCO and the local conservation district.
My local conservation district has permits from PAF&B and plans that extend out years in to the future. These things take time, but are well worth doing correctly or else your efforts may be removed. I have been involved with a quite a few de-constructions of home-made improvements on wild trout streams by locals. It's a vicious cycle where I'm sure they are surprised to come back each year to see their dam and pools have been removed.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 14:29
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Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

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Quote:

mike_richardson wrote:
I hope to put a little time in each week this year to improve the stream one way or another. I want to first of all try and get a stream clean up going. I want to get some of the brush and things cleared out to improve fishing a bit as well. I thought about creating a few stream side improvements to add the possiblility of people in wheel chairs to be able to fish. THese are no brainers in my oppinion but i am looking more on helping the over all health of the fish and the habibat and ecosystem of the stream itself.


Cutting bank vegetation, and clearing out downed trees is very damaging to streams. That is just the opposite of what you should be doing.

Creating naturally vegetated "riparian buffers", i.e. no cut buffers, is one of the primary goals of stream conservation and restoration.

And "large woody debris" (downed trees) is very important in streams. Don't remove it. There's a huge literature on these topics. If you Google these terms, you'll get into that literature.

What is the stream?

Posted on: 2013/2/9 14:44


Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

Joined:
2010/3/29 6:56
From Portage, PA
Posts: 1441
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Little conemaugh river. Its the headwaters in port.age, Cassandra, and Lilly. Thanks for the input.

Also I meant brush along the trails and such. Basically stream access issues. Should have clarified that.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 15:16
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Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

Joined:
2010/3/29 6:56
From Portage, PA
Posts: 1441
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http://fishandboat.com/water/streams/habitat_improve_trout.pdf

This is one thing i found from our commission. i am really interested in this. I know a few landowners who will be on board with this as well, and found a fellow PAFF member who also sees the potential in this stream. I think I may put up some streamside pictures when i get a chance to show you how it looks as of now.

Looking at the pdf i posted the link to. You can see that many of the improvements may be minor but can make big differences. Being a mechanical designer the drawings that are provided are great reference points as well.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 16:29
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Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site
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Joined:
2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
Posts: 9234
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Kudos Mike. I'll second those who have suggested you meet with your local WCO. Meeting with the landowners and walking the stream is the first step. Your WCO will have the contacts at PFBC who can help coordinate the permits with DEP. The actual construction phase (if you wind up doing in-stream work) will be limited to the months June-Sept to protect spawning. In the meantime, you can do riparian work, tree plantings and cessation of bankside mowing and such.
Good luck with your stream project.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 16:45


Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

Joined:
2010/3/29 6:56
From Portage, PA
Posts: 1441
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Thanks. I am going to try and head this and possibly get a few more guys in the area with me. Through the other club i am involved with we are working with DEP to get a few mine drainages cleaned up. The main one is the Hughes borehole that wipes out the entire Little Conemaugh. I think that Amfire Coal, is supposed to fix this but am not positive on this. I can only hope. This stream, If restored all the way to Johnstown would be the best stream in Cambria County. I hope to one day fish the lower end.

Until then all I can do is focus on the area that can be fished now I guess.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 18:13
_________________
"There he stands, draped in more equipment than a telephone lineman, trying to outwit an organism with a brain no bigger than a breadcrumb, and getting licked in the process."



Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

Joined:
2006/9/11 11:30
Posts: 591
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The first thing I will say is improving a watershed is a lot of work and takes cooperation with a whole lot of interests. I've become of the belief that only a small part of a streams issues are in the stream alone and that in-stream projects are only the start. You have to get the whole hydrological cycle going more naturally.

A lot of it seems to be wrapped up in mundane things like storm water management and sewage treatment. Finding the point source polluters is the first step, and getting them to change can be easy or hard depending onthe situation. Getting the non-point source pollution ironed out is even harder. In my area, phosphurus is a problem. Better sewage treatment helped, but it takes political will and money - which is hard to come by in some areas. Now the problem is phosphorus in lawn fertilizer. But how do you get people to stop fertilizing 5 times a year to get the perfect lawn? If one town outlaws high phosphurus fertilizer people can buy it in the next town. All of this means an endless round of planning board and sewage commission meetings - that is why you need a group to keep at it.

I don't think clean-ups per se help that much - but they are invaluable to getting local people to become attached to their local streams and have the long range commitment to improving them. All of us fishermen see the importance of streams, but you would be surprised at how many people aren't even aware of the streams in their neighborhood. Over the years I have seen kids who did a clean up with the Boy Scouts or a church group be much more active years later.

Then you need partnerships - the land owners, conservancies, misc state and federal organizations, canoe clubs, church groups (some highlight environemental justice and stewardship), and local governments need to be on board. It takes a lot of will to make something as big as stream restoration to happen. But if the people in an area start to value the stream only a fraction of what us fishermen do things can change.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 19:31


Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

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2006/11/20 10:08
Posts: 1210
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Mike,
If my geography is right, you're close to the Mountain Laurel Chapter of TU (Johnstown). This chapter is very active in stream rehab; its guys know what they're doing and work hard. I think they have an online website where you could probably find out how to contact them. The last I knew, Randy Buchanan was the chapter's president. This chapter has done work in Bedford County and has actively helped the John Kennedy Chapter (Blair Co) with many of its projects.
I think if you get ahold of them, you might come up with some valuable help for your stream.
Good luck.

Posted on: 2013/2/9 21:13


Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

Joined:
2010/3/23 7:50
From Clearville Pa
Posts: 253
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Mike if you want to get a hold of randy let me know I will get u his info

Posted on: 2013/2/9 22:17


Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

Joined:
2009/12/30 20:55
From NW Penna
Posts: 195
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Mabee you could T.A.P. into other groups to get involved.
Might be a help to their cause...

Posted on: 2013/2/10 21:19
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Re: Requesting advice/help from the TU guys on the site

Joined:
2010/3/29 6:56
From Portage, PA
Posts: 1441
Offline
Bing,

this was my intent but I did not want to mention them, with the recent issues with them and the fact this is a fly fishing site.

There is a meeting on Tuesday and I plan on bringing this up and Making a motion to point me head of Conservation/ Stream Improvements. I want to create a committee to focus on this stream as well.

Thanks attackone but I plan on using T.A.P. for this one. If I get any opposition I will contact you personally on this issue.

Thanks for the insight guys.

Posted on: 2013/2/10 21:45
_________________
"There he stands, draped in more equipment than a telephone lineman, trying to outwit an organism with a brain no bigger than a breadcrumb, and getting licked in the process."




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