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Sharp decline in Nipissing walleye?


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I wonder if we could ever see such a thing as a co-operative stocking/habitat program involving both native and non-native stakeholders? Probably not, but wouldn't that be a "flagship" sort of enterprise! It could even lead to better understanding in other areas, but it would require both honesty on both sides and diplomats on both sides who could look at the long-term health of the fishery for all.

 

Too tall an order, I know I'm dreaming. It's hard to be a pessimist all the time though. :blush:

The Dokis wanted nothing to do with it when asked to particpate years back. We, the non-native community, are taking "their" fish, so we should bear the cost of stocking. I've heard that argument so many times in my travels.

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The Dokis wanted nothing to do with it when asked to particpate years back. We, the non-native community, are taking "their" fish, so we should bear the cost of stocking. I've heard that argument so many times in my travels.

 

Could attitudes have changed? Everybody's in the same sinking boat. The end of a sustainable fishery is in clear sight if we go on like we have been. I think everybody realizes that. Where the optimism comes in is wanting to believe that somebody might actually do something about it.

 

Now that the native fishery can sell their catch "above board" legally, and make a pretty good industry of it, there's a stronger stake in an organized response to declining stocks.

Edited by Jocko
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Jocko, I couldn't agree with you more. If you only new how many times I've been at the MNR's neck and they tell me there hands are tied.

We use to do our annual Nipissing trip with 6 guys to Sturgeon Falls for years, then they brought in the slot limit. Every Walleye we caught had to be released, they were all in the slot. The only fish we could keep were some small Perch, Sunfish for a fish fry. At the end of the road near the lake and mouth of Sturgeon, at night they were loading a reefer truck full of our released Walleye 1000's of LBS. to the market. :wallbash::wallbash::wallbash::wallbash:

I or should I say WE pay for our fishing licenses, Cottage, food, worms, spend money in town, gas, refreshments, etc. and I can't have 1 Pickerel for a fish fry. Little to say we don't go there anymore, we go else where. It was to bad because we liked it there.

To top things off that your not suppose to know about :whistling: is the ghost nets :devil: that float around Nipissing that were lost, float around the lake netting fish till there full, sink to the bottom and rot, then surface again to fill again and sink.

Then the politics start. If only things would change. I'll say one more word ( Caledonia )

 

Now where's my blood pressure pills :blush:

 

 

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what he just said! Couldnt have wrote it any better..We quit going for the same reasons.

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sadly to say i think maybe the only solution is to do nothing. Stop all the stocking programs and let the lake bleed out. Then once the fishery has been totally depleted than maybe everyone will be on board and come to the table. The way it is now is not working and really a waste of money. I hate to see a total collapse but I think that is the way it is headed.There just seems to be to much taking and not enough giving by those involved.

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There's been an update to the article, re: comment by Nipissing First Nation biologist Richard Rowe:

 

 

 

Rowe said he's not concerned about water levels on Lake Nipissing as far as spawning grounds are concerned.

 

A dry spell in 1999 left the lake 24 centimetres lower than it is now and it only peaked 14 cm higher, but he said it didn't lead to a walleye spawning failure.

 

If fewer eggs hatch, Rowe said it leaves more food for the fingerlings which survive.

 

 

Does that sound like it makes sense? Not to me, but what do I know.

 

 

 

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From the North Bay Nugget:

 

 

 

 

 

Full article @

 

http://www.nugget.ca/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=2528165

Wow!!Walleyes taken by the non natives are prolly not the problem.Its the nets that are the problem.I know for a fact that some lodge owners do paticipate in a restocking program(Capt Hooked is one)and are supported by non natives(my brother and I).Not sure why if they are scooped up by nets every year.Not a big Walleye fisherman but I'm sure their demise will affect my pike and musky fishing.I will then only venture into Canada to see my friends and drink.

Joe

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Same old song and dance every time this topic comes up. Natives, natives, natives.... it's getting old. They are not the only ones taking fish. It is getting hammered by angling as well, and it is a combination of the two that had stressed the walleye population. We had gone from almost zero winter commercial harvest to a 1000 hut/billion dollar annual boondoggle in 15 years. 1000 huts that are generally full on any given weekend, and everyone is after walleye - that has no effect? Just look at the attention the lake gets now every winter on various message boards like this one. All the reports and anticipation on behalf of guys from the GTA all hot for Jan 1st every year. This is all relatively new. By now most know what state the fishery may be in, it doesn't matter. Everyone still wants to tear into'em. A lot boast about the money they are bringing to North Bay on their one boys weekend a year, like they are owed something in return and to hell with the world if the fishing happens to suck the 3 days they are here. Before all of this the netting was still taking place.. and the lake supported a 6 fish, any size limit. It did so for years.

 

I remember when everyone was all hot for stocking the lake, when stocking on top of a naturally sustainable population is about one of the worst management practices you can do. It's been going on for years, we still don't know what effect it has. How do the walleye reared outside the lake and then dumped in compete with the natural ones? How many make it? 0%... 90%? There are figures out there based on "conventional wisdom" but when it comes to Nipissing itself it's a crapshoot. No one knows. Despite the best of intentions by those involved, it could have very well been doing more harm than good all this time.

The natives do stock as well. 2 million fry a year from their own hatchery, if my memory isn't off.. but it may be.

 

It was a good article. Did anyone read it? "We're not getting a fair picture of the non-native fishery," - that's pretty accurate. I've been taking walleye from the lake every year of my life since the age of about 4. I've never been involved in a creel survey. Nobody asks me or my walleye eating neighbors what our take is. Some locals are in a position to take a lot of fish when the getting is good, as was touched on in a post above. Just because they don't use a net doesn't mean there is no effect.

They also alluded to the low index netting yield being a "blip" or an off year. Anyone who has experience with with fisheries management knows these things happen. The smelt thing was just the science behind a theory.

 

I also like how the MNR is somehow a bad guy in all of this. They were the ones who waved the red flag back in '99... not us. We probably would had raped the lake clean if it wasn't for the slot size, reduced limits, and shortened seasons. I'm not saying there aren't issues or questions marks when it comes to the management of the lake, but they are doing a hell of a lot more than the angling community, IMO, which has seemed to be hell bent on finger pointing the whole way through.

Edited by Northhunter
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There's been an update to the article, re: comment by Nipissing First Nation biologist Richard Rowe:

 

 

"If fewer eggs hatch, Rowe said it leaves more food for the fingerlings which survive."

 

 

Does that sound like it makes sense? Not to me, but what do I know.

 

It does. Same way you can get "stunted" fish in a body of water. I was going to try and explain it, but I don't type fast enough and probably wouldn't explain very well either. Here is an article from in- fishermen.

 

http://www.in-fisherman.com/content/walleye-management-new-millennium

 

Or you can search "walleye recruitment" and read a bunch of papers on the subject.

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Good article, Kickingfrog, thanks.

 

In particular, hatchling walleyes need abundant zooplankton and warm water to quickly begin growing. Fast early growth improves survival.

 

This makes sense, but it also makes sense to me that if zooplankton levels are good, then competition amongst walleye fry wouldn't matter. Just because there's a large hatch of walleye wouldn't mean the zooplankton would "run out".

 

The spawn on Nipissing used to be a lot greater than it is (many spawning beds have been degraded), yet all those fry obviously used to find enough to eat.

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Same old song and dance every time this topic comes up. Natives, natives, natives.... it's getting old. They are not the only ones taking fish. It is getting hammered by angling as well, and it is a combination of the two that had stressed the walleye population. We had gone from almost zero winter commercial harvest to a 1000 hut/billion dollar annual boondoggle in 15 years. 1000 huts that are generally full on any given weekend, and everyone is after walleye - that has no effect? Just look at the attention the lake gets now every winter on various message boards like this one. All the reports and anticipation on behalf of guys from the GTA all hot for Jan 1st every year. This is all relatively new. By now most know what state the fishery may be in, it doesn't matter. Everyone still wants to tear into'em. A lot boast about the money they are bringing to North Bay on their one boys weekend a year, like they are owed something in return and to hell with the world if the fishing happens to suck the 3 days they are here. Before all of this the netting was still taking place.. and the lake supported a 6 fish, any size limit. It did so for years.

 

I remember when everyone was all hot for stocking the lake, when stocking on top of a naturally sustainable population is about one of the worst management practices you can do. It's been going on for years, we still don't know what effect it has. How do the walleye reared outside the lake and then dumped in compete with the natural ones? How many make it? 0%... 90%? There are figures out there based on "conventional wisdom" but when it comes to Nipissing itself it's a crapshoot. No one knows. Despite the best of intentions by those involved, it could have very well been doing more harm than good all this time.

The natives do stock as well. 2 million fry a year from their own hatchery, if my memory isn't off.. but it may be.

 

It was a good article. Did anyone read it? "We're not getting a fair picture of the non-native fishery," - that's pretty accurate. I've been taking walleye from the lake every year of my life since the age of about 4. I've never been involved in a creel survey. Nobody asks me or my walleye eating neighbors what our take is. Some locals are in a position to take a lot of fish when the getting is good, as was touched on in a post above. Just because they don't use a net doesn't mean there is no effect.

They also alluded to the low index netting yield being a "blip" or an off year. Anyone who has experience with with fisheries management knows these things happen. The smelt thing was just the science behind a theory.

 

I also like how the MNR is somehow a bad guy in all of this. They were the ones who waved the red flag back in '99... not us. We probably would had raped the lake clean if it wasn't for the slot size, reduced limits, and shortened seasons. I'm not saying there aren't issues or questions marks when it comes to the management of the lake, but they are doing a hell of a lot more than the angling community, IMO, which has seemed to be hell bent on finger pointing the whole way through.

 

Thanks for taking on this issue in a fair manner. I appreciate your opinion.

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Same old song and dance every time this topic comes up. Natives, natives, natives.... it's getting old. They are not the only ones taking fish. It is getting hammered by angling as well, and it is a combination of the two that had stressed the walleye population. We had gone from almost zero winter commercial harvest to a 1000 hut/billion dollar annual boondoggle in 15 years. 1000 huts that are generally full on any given weekend, and everyone is after walleye - that has no effect? Just look at the attention the lake gets now every winter on various message boards like this one. All the reports and anticipation on behalf of guys from the GTA all hot for Jan 1st every year. This is all relatively new. By now most know what state the fishery may be in, it doesn't matter. Everyone still wants to tear into'em. A lot boast about the money they are bringing to North Bay on their one boys weekend a year, like they are owed something in return and to hell with the world if the fishing happens to suck the 3 days they are here. Before all of this the netting was still taking place.. and the lake supported a 6 fish, any size limit. It did so for years.

 

I remember when everyone was all hot for stocking the lake, when stocking on top of a naturally sustainable population is about one of the worst management practices you can do. It's been going on for years, we still don't know what effect it has. How do the walleye reared outside the lake and then dumped in compete with the natural ones? How many make it? 0%... 90%? There are figures out there based on "conventional wisdom" but when it comes to Nipissing itself it's a crapshoot. No one knows. Despite the best of intentions by those involved, it could have very well been doing more harm than good all this time.

The natives do stock as well. 2 million fry a year from their own hatchery, if my memory isn't off.. but it may be.

 

It was a good article. Did anyone read it? "We're not getting a fair picture of the non-native fishery," - that's pretty accurate. I've been taking walleye from the lake every year of my life since the age of about 4. I've never been involved in a creel survey. Nobody asks me or my walleye eating neighbors what our take is. Some locals are in a position to take a lot of fish when the getting is good, as was touched on in a post above. Just because they don't use a net doesn't mean there is no effect.

They also alluded to the low index netting yield being a "blip" or an off year. Anyone who has experience with with fisheries management knows these things happen. The smelt thing was just the science behind a theory.

 

I also like how the MNR is somehow a bad guy in all of this. They were the ones who waved the red flag back in '99... not us. We probably would had raped the lake clean if it wasn't for the slot size, reduced limits, and shortened seasons. I'm not saying there aren't issues or questions marks when it comes to the management of the lake, but they are doing a hell of a lot more than the angling community, IMO, which has seemed to be hell bent on finger pointing the whole way through.

 

 

So given how we are prone to raping our resources as you put it, given how that has been the case since forever, do you think it was a good idea to promote a commercial fishery on an inland lake that was seemingly already pressured and for which the scientists didn't have enough knowledge about? A fishery with very little oversight, a fishery which not only removes a large portion of the lakes targeted species but also a by catch of anything else that swims into the nets. As I said before, bring on reduced limits, bring on fewer ice hut operators, bring on fewer idiots who care less about the overall health of the lake than they do about their next fish fry. But you can't pretend that suddenly having an additional tens of thousands of kilograms of walleye harvested out of this lake wasn't going to significantly impact not only the walleye population but the whole balance of the lake, it couldn't have been more obvious. If the walleye population was already at risk as evidenced by our tendency to "rape" the resource with numbers already in decline, who in their right mind thinks netting the damn lake was going to improve upon the issue, come on people, why did we ever need the slot size?

 

The bigger question is why did the lake need a slot size and limits and licenses and spot checks for one group while another gets to net the lake and sell the fish all promoted by our government, sensible decision? I bet the sport fishing on the lake brings a lot more into the economy than the commercial fishery does, seem though our government decided it was going to the wrong people, and here we are. No doubt a voluntary 10 percent cut will make the difference..oh, and what do you want to bet "getting a fair picture of the non native fishery" will end up meaning for us second class non natives, take a guess, I bet it will be more than a 10 percent answer.

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Let's put the blame squarely on everybody. We all had a hand in it when the going was good. If we're too dumb and un-cooperative to do something about it now, then I guess we'll get what we deserve - an equivalent of the collapse of the Newfoundland cod fishery. It sounds doom-and-gloom, but it's not that remote a possibility.

 

I do disagree that the MNR, and by extension the gov't of Ontario, has done enough to protect/enhance the walleye fishery, in a variety of ways. Nipissing used to be a "showcase" lake for pickerel. I don't think it can sustain either the native or non-native harvest now, not at the levels we've been assuming are OK.

 

I do believe that any changes should affect all users of the resource equally.

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So given how we are prone to raping our resources as you put it, given how that has been the case since forever, do you think it was a good idea to promote a commercial fishery on an inland lake that was seemingly already pressured and for which the scientists didn't have enough knowledge about? A fishery with very little oversight, a fishery which not only removes a large portion of the lakes targeted species but also a by catch of anything else that swims into the nets. As I said before, bring on reduced limits, bring on fewer ice hut operators, bring on fewer idiots who care less about the overall health of the lake than they do about their next fish fry. But you can't pretend that suddenly having an additional tens of thousands of kilograms of walleye harvested out of this lake wasn't going to significantly impact not only the walleye population but the whole balance of the lake, it couldn't have been more obvious. If the walleye population was already at risk as evidenced by our tendency to "rape" the resource with numbers already in decline, who in their right mind thinks netting the damn lake was going to improve upon the issue, come on people, why did we ever need the slot size?

 

The bigger question is why did the lake need a slot size and limits and licenses and spot checks for one group while another gets to net the lake and sell the fish all promoted by our government, sensible decision? I bet the sport fishing on the lake brings a lot more into the economy than the commercial fishery does, seem though our government decided it was going to the wrong people, and here we are. No doubt a voluntary 10 percent cut will make the difference..oh, and what do you want to bet "getting a fair picture of the non native fishery" will end up meaning for us second class non natives, take a guess, I bet it will be more than a 10 percent answer.

 

 

great post blarg.....you hit it on the head

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I dunno..I have not had any problems finding walleye on Nippissing. Finding ones small enough to keep is usually the issue!

Zebra mussels, which I assume are there, changed the patterns on the Kawarthas a decade ago...but people figured them out.

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So given how we are prone to raping our resources as you put it, given how that has been the case since forever, do you think it was a good idea to promote a commercial fishery on an inland lake that was seemingly already pressured and for which the scientists didn't have enough knowledge about? A fishery with very little oversight, a fishery which not only removes a large portion of the lakes targeted species but also a by catch of anything else that swims into the nets. As I said before, bring on reduced limits, bring on fewer ice hut operators, bring on fewer idiots who care less about the overall health of the lake than they do about their next fish fry. But you can't pretend that suddenly having an additional tens of thousands of kilograms of walleye harvested out of this lake wasn't going to significantly impact not only the walleye population but the whole balance of the lake, it couldn't have been more obvious. If the walleye population was already at risk as evidenced by our tendency to "rape" the resource with numbers already in decline, who in their right mind thinks netting the damn lake was going to improve upon the issue, come on people, why did we ever need the slot size?

 

People don't seem to realize that the natives have always been there. They didn't just change their ways and decide to start netting. The lake didn't show signs of stress until the ice hut bungalow boom. It was a new cash cow (still is) and it seemed everyone and their brother started doing it. The lake can't support being the "go to" winter walleye destination for everyone in the GTA (1/10th the population of Canada) who's willing to put up a few hundred bucks and drive 4 hours north, and sustain the amount of fish removed by netting. The netting was always there. The winter commercial harvest was new and broke the camel's back, so to speak. Which side do you punish? So the bungalows bring more money to the local economy... so what. Put the new money before the health of the lake... sensible decision?

 

The bigger question is why did the lake need a slot size and limits and licenses and spot checks for one group while another gets to net the lake and sell the fish all promoted by our government, sensible decision? I bet the sport fishing on the lake brings a lot more into the economy than the commercial fishery does, seem though our government decided it was going to the wrong people, and here we are. No doubt a voluntary 10 percent cut will make the difference..oh, and what do you want to bet "getting a fair picture of the non native fishery" will end up meaning for us second class non natives, take a guess, I bet it will be more than a 10 percent answer.

 

Getting a fair picture of the non-native fishery is just that. We have a number for what the netting removes from the lake. Shouldn't we have the same for sport fishing in order to properly manage the lake? I'm sure there may be a guesstimate floating around.. but how accurate can it be. Enforcement of the regs is next to zero. I've fished the lake every year for the last 20+. I've been checked by a CO once. I've never been part of a creel survey. How do they know what my impact is.. or the thousands of others with the same experience as mine.

 

The reduced limit and shortened season was to lessen the impact of the sudden increase in harvest. The slot was to protect the breeding population (80% of it, per the MNR's data). A common complaint is anglers whining about having to release slot fish "only for them to swim into a net". If the nets (which actually target larger, spawning sized adults ie; slot fish) are having such an impact, than why are the majority of 'eyes caught now in the slot? Shouldn't they all be dead in a rotting net or being sold at roadside? Maybe angling is taking more than we would like to think.

 

Bring the winter harvest back to where it was 20 years ago, keeping everything else equal.. and we wouldn't be having this discussion. But it's pretty hard to do that and not piss a lot of people off.

Edited by Northhunter
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People don't seem to realize that the natives have always been there.

 

Thats right but they didnt use high HP boats and gill nets 200yrs ago .If its there heritage or right or what ever :whistling: use native means to harvest what they need for there family and community .And yes there are plenty of non natives out there to harvesting walleyes but I doubt 4 guys in a hut can rape a resorce as bad as a gill net spread a mile acorss the lake

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I think it might be very hard to quantify the native harvest. How large was it 10 years ago, 20 years ago, 30 years ago? I don't think any figures were kept, were there? If there had been, we could guess at how much impact netting had, and whether current levels are a concern.

 

Somebody mentioned 1000 huts on Nipissing in the winter. Is that a guess, or is it based on something solid?

 

It seems to me there's so much we don't know, and the main fault for that would go to the MNR - either for not researching and keeping various stats, or for playing them so close to the vest that we have a hard time quantifying things. I could be wrong, but I always get the feeling from the MNR that they would rather sit on any information they have, rather than share with the public. They don't like dealing with the public. What do you get if you go to the north Bay MNR office now? --- a little porch with a locked door and a telephone where you're supposed to dial the extension of the person you want to speak to. An extra catch? --- There's NO DIRECTORY BESIDE THE TELEPHONE!

 

The place is like a little Fort Knox.

Edited by Jocko
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I think it might be very hard to quantify the native harvest. How large was it 10 years ago, 20 years ago, 30 years ago? I don't think any figures were kept, were there? If there had been, we could guess at how much impact netting had, and whether current levels are a concern.

 

Somebody mentioned 1000 huts on Nipissing in the winter. Is that a guess, or is it based on something solid?

 

It seems to me there's so much we don't know, and the main fault for that would go to the MNR - either for not researching and keeping various stats, or for playing them so close to the vest that we have a hard time quantifying things. I could be wrong, but I always get the feeling from the MNR that they would rather sit on any information they have, rather than share with the public. They don't like dealing with the public. What do you get if you go to the north Bay MNR office now? --- a little porch with a locked door and a telephone where you're supposed to dial the extension of the person you want to speak to. An extra catch? --- There's NO DIRECTORY BESIDE THE TELEPHONE!

 

The place is like a little Fort Knox.

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Hi Jocko,

I'm new to this but any questions you may have about the native fishery, their regs, the ice out trap netting for pike, musky, bass can be answered quite easily. Just contact Richard Rowe at the NFN band office, his office is located within its lands department. We are always sharing our information with whoever is interested. He was on this facebook page for a bit answering legitimate questions until page got removed.

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Jocko

 

On another note, if you haven't gotten smelt yet my son and I caught a crap load sunday night. This was about the 3rd night in arow. I've been catching them for years and never seen this many. My boy filled our 5 gallon pail within 15 mins, it was crazy.

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Hi Jocko,

I'm new to this but any questions you may have about the native fishery, their regs, the ice out trap netting for pike, musky, bass can be answered quite easily. Just contact Richard Rowe at the NFN band office, his office is located within its lands department.

 

Thanks for the tip, Crosshairs. I will be at the band office anyway some time this week or early next week. I'll see if I can introduce myself and ask a few questions.

 

As for smelts, I thought I would come up dry this year, but my wife and I just got back from a little "smelting" about an hour ago. We got about 1/2 of a 2 gallon pail (that's, um, let's see... about a gallon? :P . My math's not that good since I retired.) Anyway, plenty enough for a few feeds. We could have kept on dipping and caught more but we were trying to limit our catch to what we would eat. I guess our spot wasn't as good as yours, but good enough.

 

As long as I can catch pike, bass and perch, the walleye are relatively safe from me. I actually like boneless pike fillets best of all. And a few feeds of smelt in the spring? Top notch.

 

(Don't get me wrong though - I do love a good feed of pickerel every once in a while.)

 

When I was president of the Timmins Golden Nugget Conservation Club for a few years, we actually worked with the MNR putting on fishing seminars where we tried to encourage people to target fish other than walleye. I don't know if we had a lot of impact, but Nipissing could certainly use some diversification in angler preferences.

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And yes there are plenty of non natives out there to harvesting walleyes but I doubt 4 guys in a hut can rape a resorce as bad as a gill net spread a mile acorss the lake

 

4 to 6 guys x 1000 x an 11 week season. That's a little more than "4 guys in a hut", and it's just the commercial side. There are many, many more huts on the lake that are private. I did the bungalow thing this winter on Callander Bay (I have buddies from down south). It was a humbling experience. Huts everywhere. The operator told us you can tell when the walleye are "on" just by looking at the lake... the locals are pretty quiet until a bit of a bite starts and than word gets out and everyone hits up their hut. The guys who pay are always there.. but they are a little more vocal if the fishing isn't good the weekend they come up.

 

Somebody mentioned 1000 huts on Nipissing in the winter. Is that a guess, or is it based on something solid?

 

The MNR issues licenses to operators to limit the number of commercial huts. Last year the number was 980, or something similar. There are many, many more that are "local" or from guys who make the drive and do it freelance. It's a little harder to count those, as there is no limit and they dot the entire lake.

 

The MNR is in a sad state of affairs, but you can thank our all knowing government for that one. They keep cutting the funding. Jocko... you live in the north. Are you "Bear Wise" yet? I dunno how much money gets injected into that little PR farce, too much.. but that's a different thread.

Edited by Northhunter
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The MNR is in a sad state of affairs, but you can thank our all knowing government for that one. They keep cutting the funding. Jocko... you live in the north. Are you "Bear Wise" yet? I dunno how much money gets injected into that little PR farce, too much.. but that's a different thread.

 

If you're talking about the cancellation of the spring bear hunt, I don't want to talk about that made-in-the-south piece-of-crap decision. My brother could give you an earful though.

 

There are some good people who work in the MNR, and if you're implying that their hands are tied by politics and red tape, I agree.

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A lot was said here about native fishing, but as was mentioned natives have been taking fish for years, and I suspect that when the walleye populations are down so is the native enthusiasm for netting them. After all, they do it to make a living and when they can't they won't fish, or at minimum fewer will fish. I suspect, that if indeed the population is down, it's either a result of a natural cycle or what has been reported the explosion of ice fishing huts. There are a number of variables going on, any one or combination of which may be the culpret, but typically when something like this happens a problem solver might ask "what has changed?". Ice fishing sounds like a it could be a factor.

As a tourist what I'd like to see is a cooperative effort to insure a sustained and healthy number of walleye; but that said we usually do quite well targeting walleyes on the west arm and I think the fishery is much better than where it was 30-40 years ago. Truth is, and just being honest here, what I typically see every year during our 2 week vacation are fishermen that aren't very educated in walleye behavior or persistent in their attempt to catch them. Yes, there are better waters for walleye, but one of the things I enjoy is the process of figuring them out. Sometimes it happens quickly, sometimes it takes a few days, and sometimes you never quite do figure them out and it's back to the drawing board.

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