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Re: Flatheads in the Susky

Joined:
2008/6/25 9:41
From Pgh
Posts: 1247
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Quote:

Flatheads - feared as voracious eaters that might gobble native fishes into scarcity...


Is this a realistic concern? After all they're native to the the Allegheny watershed without major impact to the fish pops. In fact smallies are thriving, and always have been.

Posted on: 2011/7/24 9:19

Edited by greenghost on 2011/7/24 9:53:50
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Re: Flatheads in the Susky
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2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
Posts: 9237
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Quote:

greenghost wrote:
Quote:

Flatheads - feared as voracious eaters that might gobble native fishes into scarcity...


Is this a realistic concern? After all they're native to the the Allegheny watershed without major impact to the fish pops. In fact smallies are thriving, and always have been.


Is this a realistic concern? I'm not sure. There are a good few bass anglers who feel it is. Flatheads are, as you point out, native to the Ohio drainage and smallmouth bass (which are native too) are thriving. On the other hand, in rivers where bass were introduced decades ago and flatheads have recently joined the party, there is a common point of view that the cats have severely reduced the SMB population. This view is particularly common among folks who fish the Skuylkill River and the lower James River in VA. With SMBs aready under severe strain in the lower Susky from other issues, the burgeoning population of flatties has some folks concerned.

Posted on: 2011/7/24 10:26


Re: Flatheads in the Susky

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2006/9/11 11:30
Posts: 592
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This will be interesting to see. I hear horror stories from Virginia, but when I lived in Illinios the local rivers had native populations of both monster flatheads and good sized smallies. The big flatheads had very specific requirements for a deep resting pool adjacent to plenty of riffles to forage and the local flathead experts claimed that there was a monster flathead lie only every few miles. Each stream will develop a different mix I would guess. Newly introduced species often go wild and then settle down to a steady state population after a few years. Who knows what will happen in Eastern PA.

BTW, I have seen some huge flatheads on the Delaware in the 60" range. Last Friday I caught a 4 lbs channel cat with teeth marks on it (looked like two brushes abraded it from each side) - I assumed they only could have come from a flathead or a muskie. Also, the VA reports have some rivers seeing drops in sunfish populations when the flatheads are introduced. The pool where the flatheads are seems to have had a big drop in redbreast sunnies, but maybe it is just my imagination.

Posted on: 2011/8/1 10:22



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