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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 04:01pm - Mar 30,13
Posts: 282
Location: Lombard,Il

Post Posted: 06:14pm - Nov 4,17 
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My brother turned me on to a small pond in Dupage /will county. We fished it the last couple of weekends.This pond is loaded with crappie but only at one end as far as we know. So we take 9 or 10 fish for dinner and leave. These fish are all between 8 1/2 and 10 in. So here is the question? Buy harvesting these fish are we helping or hurting? What I'm getting at is this. The thought that reducing the population will improve the size? Or are you just taking from a small population and will eventually destroy the fishery? Fellows don't beat me up on this. I only take what I can eat for dinner.

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Chitown-Angler
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Joined: 09:32pm - Feb 12,03
Posts: 7535
Location: Not quite over the hill, but has a breathtaking view from the lofty perch.

Post Posted: 07:42pm - Nov 4,17 
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Very good question from a true sportsman worried about sustaining the population.

I have seen some of the lakes I fish drop in quality fish and amount due to taking the best breeding population out for dinner. Braidwood and wampum are two prime examples. The question you ask is a complicated one, as there are many variables that affect the fishery. Size of the pond, predators, harvest, the list can go on but you know that.

What I have done in the last few years is try to identify the the breeding size/age of the fish and then take some of the lessor sized ones for dinner. It only takes 1 or 2 more 8" fish to yield the same amount of fillet's for the table. Nothing scientific mind you, but doing what I can so I can come back year after year for the enjoyment and some food.

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Last edited by wsj_outdoorsman on 05:36am - Nov 5,17, edited 1 time in total.
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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 03:19pm - Nov 24,06
Posts: 806
Location: Lombard

Post Posted: 09:02pm - Nov 4,17 
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In my opinion your hurting the population.

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Salmon Unlimited Member
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Joined: 10:35am - Feb 11,03
Posts: 8090
Location: Naperville

Post Posted: 11:39pm - Nov 4,17 
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mops7 wrote:
In my opinion your hurting the population.


Mops7 you can't just answer like that. That leaves the impression that we can't take any fish from a pond for the table. I've lived where I live in the western burbs for 20 years now, and have a pretty good idea of what ponds are good and healthy, vs over fished, stunted, and truthfully, over managed. I've seen one pond in particular that used to have salad plate gills, over managed to the point that it's almost void of fish. Not from people taking, but just miss management.

Keeping a rod in the truck all the time and hitting a pond here and there, never taking a fish in the early years, as all I did was fish for bass, and gills here and there on a fly rod with a popper. Seeing the changes in those ponds over the years, you do see the need for selective harvest in the pan fish, to keep things in balance, and healthy. Now if I don't share my plan with the 20 other people who fish the pond, is that an effective plan? You just don't know.

I will tell you that my boys do take a selective harvest of bluegills, crappies, and yes, yellow perch from the western suburban ponds in winter and early spring. They food saver those fish and take them to college with them, fry them up on a weekend off, and it reminds them of home. You buy a licence because it is the law, but it also allows you to take fish with in regulations.

Livetofish07, I think you're fine, and appreciate you throwing out the question. Shoot me a PM and I'll share a pond or two with you.

Tom

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 03:19pm - Nov 24,06
Posts: 806
Location: Lombard

Post Posted: 11:32am - Nov 5,17 
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First off, none of us are biologists and know the make up of the pond (at least to my knowledge). So any of the opinions that are stated should be tossed out the window. If you purchase a license your allowed to take fish, however if you think your the only one taking fish out of a pond in the chicagoland area, your sadly mistaken. If it was a farm pond in central IL, then I bet the pond would be fine. You and your buddy tell one person, they each tell one person, so on and so forth. Eventually unethical people find it and fish it out, this unfortunately is the way of urban fishing. How many times do you hear "5, 10, 20 years ago we used to catch..... out here?" Why do you think this is the case? I had a honey hole that I thought know one knew of, my brother and I once caught 45 bass in about an hour during a rain storm, biggest over 5lbs. Now I'm lucky to catch 2 bass in 2 hours out of that lake. I once found a stringer with four 12" bass on in in that lake. I let them them go and put a bullhead on it. Point being, eventually it's going to get fished out. So in my opinion your just expediting the process by keeping fish. If you want to keep fish I prefer to go to a large body of water and catch them from there, you can catch 100 rock bass easily out of Lake Geneva and keep them all, the chain holds lots of gills/crappies There's other options to keep fish, then small ponds. Mops

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 04:01pm - Mar 30,13
Posts: 282
Location: Lombard,Il

Post Posted: 01:27pm - Nov 5,17 
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Thanks guys for your opinions. I knew this post would stir up controversy. Well put by everyone. I have only been to this pond 4 times and kept fish twice. We caught ( and released ) some very large Bass while fishing for panfish. The pond is airreated and surrounded by marsh. Its only fishable from shore at two locations or kayak and there is evidence of other fisherman being there although I have never seen anyone. Mops, thanks for taking time to explain your first reply. I'm sure there will be more coming. I got admit it is tempting think it's over populated when fishing is that good.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 08:55am - Nov 20,08
Posts: 375
Location: Oak Forest

Post Posted: 02:28pm - Nov 8,17 
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Look at the fish. Is there any sign of skinny fish or stunted growth? Those are signs of overpopulation. There's a pretty well-established length-weight chart for bass. If a bass is X" long, it should weigh X lbs if healthy and well-fed. If it looks like its head is too big for its body, it's underfed. I'm not sure if similar data exists for crappie.

My aunt and uncle live on a private subdivision pond that no one keeps any fish out of due to the lawn runoff. There are some huge bass and crappie in that lake and you really go "catching" instead of "fishing" because the fish are desperate for a meal. After consulting with biologists, the subdivision was advised to remove a LOT of the predator fish from the lake. The food chain was getting too top-heavy and would collapse if nothing was done.

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