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"They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2006/9/9 11:22
From New Castle, PA
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So that's what I was told while leaving a NWPA ATW. I just sort or nodded in agreement knowing that it was worthless to try to explain the type of fishing experience I had come for, and found.

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Do we really need a stream to be "Class A" before we treat it as a wild trout stream? What are we accomplishing by dumping trout into every bridge pool on every trickle in the state? Is it worth the cost, the effort, the time?

Kev

Posted on: 2010/4/19 18:53


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2006/9/9 19:37
From aliquippa
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nice fish kev !!!, maybe trout fishing in the nw of pa isn`t so bad after all...lol

Posted on: 2010/4/19 18:58
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Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2006/9/11 13:05
From Lewistown
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There was talk a couple years back about eliminating stocking on waters with nat. repro., but I don't think it got anywhere.

I think the harvesting anglers would be upset.

For instance, the county I live in doesn't need to be stocked, not one stream. However, it is, heavily. It's all about the stringer. Heck even fingerling stockings are described as a "Put, grow, and take fishery."

Posted on: 2010/4/19 19:54
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Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2009/12/23 13:09
From Lewistown, PA
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kern,

i agree totally, kish creek was a circus on saturday, funny to drive by though, it was as bad as the stupid trout derby, and no need for any stocking there..... and of course no one was at tea creek.... just a few tents set up on the banks cooking food for people coming from kish

Posted on: 2010/4/19 21:09


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2007/10/26 13:09
From Pittsburgh
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beautiful fish!

Here is a somewhat encouraging article regarding the PAFC stocking practices.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10107/1051146-358.stm

Posted on: 2010/4/19 21:12


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2006/11/10 8:32
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If, and that is a big "if," your photos are representative of the stream it is no wonder that it is not Class A. What I see from the photos, especially the first one, is a scenic but wide, shallow stream which in those areas has little habitat for adult trout. In another photo, I see what is a wide, shallow stream with a small pocket pool at one edge, which probably holds some adult trout. The stream has intermittent narrow stretches of excellent habitat, but perhaps too much wide, shallow habitat. If my observations are correct, and I am not saying that they are in this case, they are at least instructional with respect to habitat and why some streams that are pretty and support wild trout do not maintain a Class A biomass. Just so you know that I am not picking on the NW, the often mentioned Valley Creek in SE Pa has long been headed in that direction due to the impacts of stormwater runoff. Other than perhaps for its limestone fertility being its saving grace, in time I would not be surprised to see it fall from the Class A category as it continues to become wider and shallower. And, to be honest, I would rather spend a day angling in that NW Pa stream, Class A or not.

Posted on: 2010/4/19 21:24


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
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I've learned over the years that class (or biomass) is a very poor indicator of getting a quality fishing experience from a stream. The reasons are highlighted by Mike. As far as habitat, all that really matters is the fish holding water. Example:

Stream A: 30 ft wide, but only a 10 ft wide "channel" of fish holding water.

Stream B: 15 ft wide, with a 10 ft wide "channel" of fish holding water.

For the fisherman, the 2 streams are about the same size, you're only fishing that channel anyway. Yet, if they both held exactly the same number and size of fish, biomass will tell you stream B has twice the biomass of stream A.

Further, the riffle to pool ratio really plays into biomass, but plays to a lesser extent in fishing success. Especially in smaller streams, the riffles often don't hold fish. The fishermen skips right by them and fishes the better habitat. That better habitat may be loaded with fish, which equates to success. But if good spots are every 20 feet instead of every 10 feet, the stream biomass gets punished.

The problem is that the PFBC uses that biomass rating as a measure of the quality of the fishing experience offered by wild trout. I suppose I don't have a better way to rate them, but I do find it inadequate. The best way would be to do it by biomass per volume of water instead of surface area. You could use the average flow. But I recognize that it is a more difficult and time consuming measurement than width, and they have an awful lot of streams to survey.

I can't go as far to say they should never stock any stream with natural reproduction, some streams have such a small wild trout population that they should be stocked. I suppose I'd settle for lowering the biomass ratings needed to be class A. Most class B streams shouldn't be stocked, and even some class C streams.

PenKev, great pics. I love NW PA. So much so that I travel from SE PA to fish it, passing through central PA.

Posted on: 2010/4/20 0:20


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2006/9/9 17:18
From lancaster county
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Awesome!

Posted on: 2010/4/20 1:21
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Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2006/9/9 11:22
From New Castle, PA
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Mike,

The stream alternates from wide shallow, to clusters of undercuts and roots wads. In fact, most of the holding water is created by either fallen or standing trees. However, *wherever* there is holding water, there are trout.


pcray1231,

I think we are on the same page. I fequent both the stream in the pics and another smaller stream that is "Class A." I catch more and bigger fish on the un-classed stream. Yeah, I skip over WAY more water, but the good holding water is easier to fish and gives up it's fish much easier. So, from a fishing viewpoint, it is the better stream. From a biologist's viewpoint, the Class A is probably better. There are more fish, spread more evenly, over a smaller body of water.


flyski,

The effort to survey and document wild trout populations is great, but I think we may be overlooking the streams we already know about that have viable and *fishable* wild trout poluations.

Kev


P.s. For the record, I didn't only catch these two fish. There were two other fish, both brookies, plus a pair of LDR's.

Posted on: 2010/4/20 1:36


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2009/7/29 10:25
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not comment on this particular stream, but I increasingly look for "narrow, deep, and steep," versus "wide, shallow, and flat..."

Posted on: 2010/4/20 8:13


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
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The only picture that looks like bad habitat to me is picture #1. #'s 2 and 4 look like very good habitat to me. I have no idea what is typical for the stream (well, I might, if it is the stream I think it is but I'm not sure).

k-bob: Look at those banks. There's a certain plant created by the devil himself thats totally missing. Yes, NW PA is an enjoyable place. :)

Posted on: 2010/4/20 8:34


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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pcr: I have made peace with the diabolical rhodo; it can have one side of the stream and I will go to the other side:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/22661054@N00/4467591245/sizes/l/

Posted on: 2010/4/20 8:56


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
Posts: 13362
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How do you train it to do that? Mine always wants to be on both sides for some reason....

Posted on: 2010/4/20 9:00


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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not to boast, but the few rhodo stragglers on the right actually jumped over the stream just after I took this picture. big rhodo roundup, hyah!

Posted on: 2010/4/20 9:04


Re: "They didn't stock here, we ain't seen no fish..."

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2006/11/2 8:50
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PennKev, what kind of fly were you using there? I was looking at the photo and trying to guess. Olive wooly bugger with a big split shot at the head?

I agree that such a stream should not be stocked. And I'd love to know the name of the stream.

Posted on: 2010/4/20 9:09



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