- Sep 9, 2006
I'll be the first to admit that I don't know the answer as to why the Susky bass population crashed. I fish the lower Juniata and it crashed just as badly as the Susky as far as I can tell. This suggests to me that sewage plants in Dauphin Co can't be the entire problem - there must be similar problems in towns from Lewistown down to Newport. Moreover, if aging/failing sewage systems are the main problem, I would think other areas upstream would have been hit just as hard. Has anyone seen studies on water quality in different sections of the Susky? I do know there have been studies on columnaris indicating its prevalence in the lower Susky and Juniata. If there are specific sewage plants that are the problem it ought to be fairly easy to pinpoint them. Are there not aging sewage systems on the Allegheny and upper Susky? I also find the claim that "low, warm water" explains the lack of fish to be unconvincing. Back in the nineties we looked forward to very low water in the summer because it made for easy wading and you could catch dozens of fish every evening in the Dauphin Narrows, an area where I have have had very poor fishing the last few years. I still see tremendous numbers of crayfish and the white flies are still coming off (at least they were in 05 and 06) so lack of forage can't be a problem. As the saying goes, "more studies are needed." I remain skeptical of those who claim with certitude that they know the reasons for the decline of bass in these river systems.