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Re: So they're not closing...

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2006/9/9 10:36
From Philadelphia, PA
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Jack,

I thought so too. I meant those numbers to address the number of harvesters question.

I might be confused about what we're talking about at this point. :)

Posted on: 2013/3/24 13:43
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Re: So they're not closing...
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Troutbert "challenged" me to guess at the number of wild trout in PA. I challenged him in return to guess at the number of harvesters. I should have said "wild trout harvesters," I guess, but that was the context.

Posted on: 2013/3/24 14:00
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Re: So they're not closing...

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From Greensburg, PA
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Maybe someone will give us the answer in that ever so helpful and relevant kg/ha units.

Posted on: 2013/3/24 14:14


Re: So they're not closing...

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Quote:

JackM wrote:
Troutbert "challenged" me to guess at the number of wild trout in PA. I challenged him in return to guess at the number of harvesters. I should have said "wild trout harvesters," I guess, but that was the context.


Gotcha.

First off, throw out anything I said about annually. The study in question applied only to opening day through June 12. This is what I get for skimming.

The 2.5 million published in the study is actually the middle range of a 95% confidence interval that ranges between 1.8 and 3.4 million trout harvested annually.

The same study also provides statistics for the percentage of stocked trout harvested. The 95% CI there is 1.9 million to 3.2 million.

I suppose you could say that this tells us that "most" of the trout harvested during that period are stocked, but given the large numbers we're talking about, could still contain a significant number (i.e. as many as 200,000) of wild trout (or as few as 0, I suppose :))

Given that the estimates have such a large range, it could also be argued that the study in question tells us nothing about this particular topic.

I'll stop blathering. It's here, should anyone care:
http://www.fish.state.pa.us/images/fisheries/creel2005_stocked.pdf

Posted on: 2013/3/24 15:11
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Re: So they're not closing...

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PFBC license sales for 2012 are here:
http://fishandboat.com/images/admin/lars/fishlice_county2012.pdf

The trout anglers under age 16, those who bought the lifetime license in previous years, and poachers, are not included in those numbers.

Then we'd have to guess at what percentage of trout anglers who are either committed to releasing all trout, or releasing all wild trout (and can consistently distinguish wild from stocked trout.)

So, how many anglers are there who would keep a legal sized wild trout if they caught one? I'll make a ball park, but IMHO conservative, estimate of about 350,000.


Posted on: 2013/3/24 15:36


Re: So they're not closing...

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In response to Greenlander...I am an advocate of catch and release as well. I also believe in sustainability and protecting the resource, but what's the point of protecting it if we are t going to use it once in a while as well. What I meant about it being a blood sport and a way to provide a meal for your family is that that is the root purpose of fishing. There is something bigger than that that draws us to the sport, especially as fly anglers, or we wouldn't keep coming back when we don't succeed or have anything to show for our efforts. But at the very root of it all is the purpose of harvest. 100% C&R takes away from that. Without ever collecting from the resource, what is the purpose is sustaining it. Sure there will be fish in the future. Sure our future generations will be able to enjoy them. But, in my opinion, without the ability to make the personal decision to keep or release it isn't the same. There is just something you can't recreate when you eat something you've killed, especially when it's wild. Sure, you can argue that you can keep the stocked mutants that are put in the water for that purpose, but it really isn't the same. I know this makes it sound like I am a usual keeper of fish. I'm not. I haven't kept a trout in years, and haven't kept a wild trout in even longer. But I will say that a stocked trout doesn't hold a candle to a wild one when it comes to table fare, not to mention all the other variables involved. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending how you look at it, there are many people that haven't a clue when it comes to this.

Posted on: 2013/3/24 16:22


Re: So they're not closing...

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2009/4/11 18:51
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Quote:
I suppose you could say that this tells us that "most" of the trout harvested during that period are stocked, but given the large numbers we're talking about, could still contain a significant number (i.e. as many as 200,000) of wild trout (or as few as 0, I suppose :))



When you say most I'm thinking in the 99-99.9 % range.

Posted on: 2013/3/24 23:18
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Re: So they're not closing...

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It's hard to break it down by anglers. You got guys that fish 1 day a year, and others that fish over 100 days per year. You got guys that keep none, guys that keep all, and a huge majority that keep some % and release a %, but those percentages vary greatly. You also have huge variations in skill and tactics. On the same water, one guy may catch 20 while the next catches 1 or 2.

Assuming equal impact per angler is simply silly.

Much better to do it by fish. I don't care to look it up, but we have estimates of what % of caught fish are released. We probably can find some serious location variations too. Like perhaps fish caught from lakes are far more likely to be harvested than those from streams? You could look for things like this, do a weighted average, and come up with a reasonable estimate.

It's just a guess, but I'd venture to say far less than 1% of caught wild fish are harvested. Far less. I think intentional harvest of wild fish, state wide, is almost negligible, but don't deny that there could be specific locations where it's substantial. Just one guy with repeated trips to a small stream is capable of doing some damage.

But the bigger issue is not intentional harvest, but accidental mortality. Stocked fish bring lots of anglers, often beginner anglers. Even if most of those anglers are skilled enough to keep mortality rates low, there's a few where mortality rates are high.

I don't mean to jumpstart the bait vs. artificial debate. But if you see, say, a 20% "average" mortality rate for baitfishing, that doesn't mean that most of those anglers are killing 20% of the fish they catch. That means MOST of them are probably killing under 5%, and a few of them are killing 80 or 90% of the fish they catch! Baitfishing does ALLOW an angler to have high mortailty. It can be avoided. But in any large group, there are a few beginners who don't know any better, and a few a-holes who just don't care.

If I could come up with a way, through regulation, to target the a-holes without hurting the beginners or the enlightened, I'd be for it. But I have empathy for the beginners, we were all there once. And frankly, we don't give the PFBC enough credit. The fishing in this state is pretty dang good right now. We're all well intentioned but sometimes I think we'd be better to leave well-enough alone. We bash them for perceived or real slights to our beloved wild trout, but overall, you have to admit they're doing a heck of a job.

Posted on: 2013/3/25 9:43


Re: So they're not closing...

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I agree with pat, and I think it is easy to overestimate the impact of stocking on the state's wild trout population. As mike recently pointed out on paff, most of PA's wild trout live in small streams - if only because there are so many more small streams than big streams. And the state has a minimum width for stream stocking. So most of the PA streams with wild trout are never stocked, and many are seldom even fished (posted, too small, too remote). Many of the complaints about stream stocking are really more relevant to fishing issues (why is stream x that I like stocked?) than any signicant threat to the wild trout population size in PA.


Posted on: 2013/3/25 10:09

Edited by k-bob on 2013/3/25 10:31:32


Re: So they're not closing...

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A good example of the way fishermen may overestimate the harm to wild trout populations can be seen by looking at Cold Run in Schuylkill. I do wish that it was not stocked along the road there. But look at the cold run system in a terrain map, zoom it out. The two nice brookie streams to the north that form cold run? Remote, posted or both. The two nice brookie streams to the east and west that join cold run? Very remote, very small, some posting. Brutal ravine on the east. Stocking cold run along the road may supress the number of wild trout there, but it hardly threatens the viability of wild trout in this stream system. And it may not even reduce the total number of wild trout in the system much at all...

Posted on: 2013/3/25 11:11


Re: So they're not closing...

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All valid/good points, and I'm in agreement that there is probably not extensive damage done via the stocking program to the current wild trout population in the state.

However, I'm less interested in what harm stocking does to the existing/current wild trout population and more interested in what wild trout populations *could* be if stocking was stopped and C&R put in place on rivers/streams that have the ingredients to support a wild trout population.

Posted on: 2013/3/25 11:15
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Re: So they're not closing...

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2006/9/13 10:18
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Quote:

TimMurphy wrote:
Dear Board,

The State should stop raising trout period.

There should be perhaps 3 hatcheries in total. Their purpose should be to produce fish to repopulate waters such as lakes that have been drained for repairs or streams that have been damaged due to environmental events like train wrecks or fuel truck spills.

Nature would do the repopulating over time but having a few hatcheries would allow for the stocking of several year classes of fish, and that would expedite the restoration of damaged or drained waters.

Barring that why not save money and allow license holders to drive right to the hatchery and collect a daily limit of trout in a 5 gallon spackle bucket.

You would eliminate the expense of trucks and fuel and the people that actually keep those pasty tasteless things would still be able to get their fill.

Regards,

Tim Murphy


Tim,
I can't disagree. I think they should get rid of the non natives and repopulate with natives of all species. Whole populations of fish have vanished from streams and lakes because of stocking no natives.

Posted on: 2013/3/25 14:02


Re: So they're not closing...

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2006/9/13 10:18
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Quote:

StarvinMarvin wrote:
To everyone saying throw out the stocking program, let me ask this: without the stocked trout program would you even fish today? or did you guys just pop out of the woom and slay wild fish and wild fish only. Without the stocked trout program I feel like overall the fishing in PA would go down. The fact is that some of the wild fish have come from hatchery raised fish naturally reproducing. I know of 3 streams that are on the stocking report that havent been stocked in 3 years and frankly I dont care but for the past 3 years I've seen 40-50 people easily make 1 hour plus drives and park campers stream side only to come home the next morning and not catch one damn fish. If I hadnt fished for stockies I prob wouldnt have picked up a fly rod, and had the desire to get educated. Just my .02

First of all I almost never keep fish, but when I do it's only ever stocked fish. And no I didn't pop out of a WOMB and start fishing for wild fish. That just the only fish I have any interest in catching. Oh, I go to Pine Creek once in a while, but never to keep fish.

Posted on: 2013/3/25 14:06


Re: So they're not closing...

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2006/9/13 10:18
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Quote:

troutbert wrote:
The idea of harvesting wild food is very appealing, and there is some opportunity to do that.

But there is a reason humans took to farming thousands of years ago. Because of the limited ability of nature to provide abundant wild food.

It would be interesting to know the number of legal sized wild trout that exist in the state of PA. And how that compares to the number of anglers.



Scientists now claim that the earth would support about 3,000,000 hunter gatherers, without agriculture.
That's not many people.

Posted on: 2013/3/25 14:18


Re: So they're not closing...

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2006/9/11 19:52
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I think I read somewhere in a pfbc reprrt a few years ago that PA streams produce about 700, 000 legal sized wild trout per year.

Posted on: 2013/3/25 17:02



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