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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 11:52am - Feb 11,03
Posts: 831

Post Posted: 03:40pm - May 4,03 
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Stopped by Tampier today to hook up with a buddy who I was donating my old lawn mower to. He was there fishing with his kids, I didn't bring a rod but helped the little ones out. We fished the westernmost slough on the north side of 131st by the culvert, managed some small gills on redworms. Observed a guy fishing small jigs under bobbers catching crappies, one after another, only problem was they were all like 4" long. Is this typical for this lake now? I haven't fished it in a while and I always used to be able to catch some nice crappies out of there, I won't be fishing it for a while longer if this is what to expect.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 09:16am - Feb 9,03
Posts: 1396

Post Posted: 02:51am - May 5,03 
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I spoke with Scott Bullard a few weeks ago, Scott is the Biologist for the CCFP. His take on the Tampier Crappies is this: Crappie populations run in cycles, that is to say they will have periods where the population is strong with plenty of Big fish, this can last for a couple of years, then (for reasons unknown) that population goes into decline for a few years, only to return to a strong population, that cycle generally runs about 7 years.
I recall catching slab crappies from Tampier as little as 5 years ago. Now it would appear we are in that down-period. This is not a BAD thing, Crappies and Blue Gills dont make for good pond partners! This down-period for the crappies will give the Gills a chance to rebound, and with a rebounding Gill population the Bass will have more available food other than the millions of shad that choke the lake and make fishing so very hard. You can expect the Big Crappies to return...give it a few more seasons.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 11:52am - Feb 11,03
Posts: 831

Post Posted: 08:50am - May 5,03 
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Thanks Bob, that's good to know the biologists are aware of it. It seems that when I was catching decent crappies there, there wasn't much variation in size of the fish either. They all seemed to be the same year class. I found that kind of strange also as I've never had that experience on any other lake.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 09:16am - Feb 9,03
Posts: 1396

Post Posted: 09:53am - May 5,03 
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You are quite welcome Sir!
I'm off for an afternoon of Southside puddle jumpin' We're gonna try a little cat fishing on the Des Plaines, But if the conditions arent right we may bounce around a little..Tampier maybe, or some of our "Secret Ponds" Who know's where we may end up? We're taking a variety of tackle to cover the mood as it strikes us, could end up busting gills in a retention pond or Northerns from the river... I HATE fishing like this, I call it the "Shotgun Approach" I prefer to have a plan, and a target species for the day, it confirms my opinion of my skill level. Just going after anything thats biting only proves that even a blind squirrel can find a nut in the woods if he roots around in the dirt long enough! But still it beats the snot out of what most of you guys are stuck doing 9-5 X 5 maybe I'll try to catch a couple in the name of all you hard workin' stiffs tryin to put food on the table! :wink:

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 09:16am - Feb 9,03
Posts: 1396

Post Posted: 05:59am - May 6,03 
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As stated in the post prior, I, and my fishing bud Joe Sollami, made the rounds yesterday afernoon. Driving past Tampier to see if conditions were right for my one and only pattern that works there, Nope, High winds (from the wrong direction) and whitecaps! Keep driving... try the D P. River hoping to find shad stacked up in the discharge...no way!...discharge is under water! fished there for about ½ hour with nothing to show for the effort. Next stop (against my better judgement) Sag Quarry...Water muddy, didn't fish, talked to a couple of young guys who were throwing frogs to the scumline No Fish for them! Next stop Saganaskee ( Man I HATE this lake) wind straight out of the west now making line control difficult ( open the bail and line peels off before you can say "another clusterfrog" we got two or three dink bullheads and it's time to move. Armed with crappie minnows that a fella back at "Shaggynasty" had donated to our "Cause" we made our way to my SECRET POND, it's down in a small valley, winds minimal, and better still...at our backs, instead of in our face! Water is moving nicely thru the culvert tube, fished there for about 1½ hours and the action was pretty much nonstop, plenty of Gills, Crappie, and Smaller Bass. Nothing big but plenty of fish. everything caught on minnows or small pieces of nightcrawler under a slip-float sat @ 18" down. Looking back on theday I guess we should have started there, but sometimes you just have to break from "routine" and mix it up a little.

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