Barbs and Backlashes

This just in . . . by Nebraska Game and Parks Commission
October 29, 2009, 1:51 pm
Filed under: Fishing | Tags:

There was a Game & Parks board of commissioners meeting today.  One of the things on the agenda were some fishing regulation changes for 2010.

Changes to 2010 Fishing Regulations Approved

LINCOLN, Neb. – The Nebraska Game and Parks Board of Commissioners approved amendments to the 2010 fishing regulations Thursday, including one that prohibits the harvest of wipers at Zorinsky Lake.

Stocking of wipers into the Omaha lake has begun, so they may prey on abundant gizzard shad. The regulation should reduce premature harvest of small wipers to allow them to eat shad and grow, so they eventually may be caught several times during their lives.

Other regulation changes are:

— Iron Horse Trail Lake is added to the list of waters with a 21-inch minimum length limit on black bass.

— The new walleye spawning reef habitat at Sherman Reservoir is included in the area closed to fishing from sunset to sunrise, April 1 – 20.

— Blue Lake in Garden County is closed to access during the November firearm deer season.

— It is unlawful to possess live baitfish at Hedgefield Lake in Lancaster County. The lake is being rehabilitated, and the goal of the regulation is to reduce introduction of undesirable fish.

— It is unlawful to possess live baitfish at Lake Wanahoo in Saunders County. The lake is being built, and the watershed will be treated with rotenone in the fall of 2009 to eliminate existing fish. The goal of the regulation is to reduce introduction of undesirable fish.

— The following have been added to a list of waters managed as High Use Fishing Areas: Open Fields and Waters program lakes and ponds, Big Springs City Pond, Birdwood Lake in North Platte, Friend City Lake, Hedgefield Lake, Hooper City Lake, Humphrey Pond in Ogallala, Kramer Park Lake in Bellevue, Lake Wanahoo, North Platte Interstate 80 Lake, Oxford City Lake, Papio D4, Schwer Park Pond in Papillion, Silver Creek City Lake, and Stanton Lake in Falls City.

The regulations for High Use Fishing Areas are: 21-inch minimum length limit and one-fish daily bag limit on black bass, 10-fish daily bag limit on panfish, and three-fish daily bag limit on channel catfish.

— Regarding bait collection and dealer regulations, the maximum legal opening size of a baitfish trap throat increased from 1.5 to 2 inches.

There was nothing too controversial in any of the 2010 fishing regulation proposals, but if you see something there that you have a question about, feel free to ask!


8 Comments so far
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any discussion about lake maloney? game and parks just going to fill it in the spring and drain it in the fall like a big bath tub? see they planted wheat we gonna have a wheat feild now? understand they have to work on the damn. why not dig the lake out, put some structure back in it? just wondering

Comment by wallydrifter

I hate to tell you this, but the Nebraska Game & Parks Commission does NOT own Lake Maloney nor do we have any control over water level management in that reservoir. Lake Maloney is owned and operated by the Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD), . NPPD has complete control over water level management.

As I understand it, NPPD needed to drain Lake Maloney this fall to do some inspection and perhaps repairs on the dam. That is far from ideal for the fishery, but there is absolutely nothing that we can do about it. If there is some question about dam safety, there would be absolutely nothing NPPD could do but get in there and make sure the dam is safe.

Planting some wheat or other terrestrial vegetation on exposed bottom substrates will provide some excellent fish habitat when the reservoir fills. That is at least one attempt to make the most of the situation.

If NPPD would like to excavate sediment from the reservoir to improve the storage capacity that would be great. We would be all for it!

Daryl B.

Comment by Daryl Bauer

Glad to see the 21 inch size limit at Iron Horse. That lake has or had some big fish. Question, when G and P stocks bass in the lakes, where do they get them (hatchery) from? Just wondering.

Comment by Dave

When we stock largemouth bass we usually use one or two different stocking strategies. Often we will transfer some adult bass from another body of water that has a high density of bass. Those adult bass give us an instant predator base to stay on top of any undesirable fish that might show up, and of course they will spawn and produce lots of small bass to populate a new body of water or a body of water that has been renovated.

The other largemouth bass stocking strategy we use is the stocking of fingerlings that have been produced in a hatchery. Our hatchery at Valentine produces most of our largemouth bass. Interestingly, bass culture in a hatchery is similar to the first stocking strategy I described–pairs of adult bass are placed into hatchery ponds to spawn. Once those adults have spawned they are removed from the ponds and their offspring are simply raised in that pond until they are ready for stocking.

Daryl B.

Comment by Daryl Bauer

How does G&P decide to put a pond/lake on the High-Use list?

I ask because I see Schwer Park pond in Papillion has been added to the “High Use” list.

In my (admittedly limited – just a couple years) experience, the only time I see anything like “heavy” use there is during crappie spawn.
The rest of the year (again in my limited experience) it seems pretty quiet. I’ve heard this mentioned by other local anglers as well.

Even during crappie spawn I’d only see a few other anglers out there in a given day. It seems that, due to its location, it just doesn’t get that much traffic.

The bass limit in particular puzzles me. I for one haven’t seen many bass over 12-14″ come out of that pond. In fact, nearly all the LMBs I’ve seen come out of there are pretty small.

Am I wrong? I certainly don’t oppose the regulation on principle; I’m just curious about its imposition.

Comment by Jason, Papillion

A relatively small body of water in the largest population center in the state is surely one where the fish need additional protection from over-harvest. Does that mean that body of water receives high fishing pressure every day? No, not at all, but high pressure for just a few days can result in enough harvest to have a significant impact on the fishery.

We have a 21-inch minimum length limit on largemouth bass as a “high use fishing area” regulation because bass are particularly susceptible to over-harvest and we need a healthy population of largemouth bass in those waters. We rely on largemouth bass to be THE predator to stay on top of panfish, rough fish and bait fish populations in small waters. Largemouth bass are THE predator fish that is most successful in those habitats. The 21-inch minimum length limit is the regulation that protects the most bass. We do not necessarily expect to produce a lot of big bass with that regulation although at times that is a nice “fringe benefit”. In fact if we have an abundance of 10-15-inch largemouth bass, those fish are usually very successful in controlling panfish numbers and in controlling the numbers of any undesirable fish that might invade. If we have a healthy population of bass, we will have a quality panfish fishery which will satisfy a lot of young anglers!

I hope that makes sense. Let me know if I did not explain that well or if you have more questions.

Daryl B.

Comment by Daryl Bauer

I recently took a walk on the lake bed of Lake Maloney and found a whole bunch of huge fresh water clam shells, will this effect there population in the lake it is really a shame these huge beautiful creatures had to die

Comment by Chris B

Obviously the draining of Lake Maloney will affect the freshwater mussels in the short-term–the last I checked they need water! But, in the long-term, as soon as the water is back in Lake Maloney there will be mussels back too. Obviously they found their way in there before; they will find their way in there again. Many of our native freshwater mussels are transported as larval parasites on the gills of fish. So once the water and fish return to Lake Maloney the mussels will probably find their way back too.

Daryl B.

Comment by Daryl Bauer

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