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T-7 Days

Discussion in 'Hunting - Trapping, Deer, Gator, Hog, Turkey' started by Rich M, Oct 19, 2020.

  1. Rich M

    Rich M Scallywag
    Thread Started By

    The Willimantic has a couple areas that hold a lot of smallmouth and largemouth bass. Then there's a couple areas where it is dammed and is quality bass fishing, but it seems like shiners at sunup is the only way to catch any significant numbers of them.

    Really is crazy how the fish will hold behind 1 rock and not any others...

    Do they still put salmon in the Farmington?
  2. George Buck

    George Buck Cabin Boy

    CT. had two different salmon programs.
    The Atlantic Salmon restoration project for the Ct. River has been suspended for Ct. It was not particularly successful. We would get maybe a dozen mature salmon returning each year which is nothing. During the last glaciated period the Ct. River was formed and Atlantic Salmon were common in the river. The river was not dammed and salmon would go from Atlantic, through Long Island Sound, up the river to Quebec. As the inter-glacial period unfolded, and the northern hemishpere warmed, the Ct. River, which was the southern most river with Atlantic Salmon, was not as friendly an environment for salmon so they dwindled but the tribs supported smolts so there were always some. Then the dams came, etc. and it ended. The project tried to start it up again with fish ladders, etc. but it never really worked. Atlantic Salmon are still raised in New England hatcheries but for stocking lakes and the fish are now land-locked Atlantic Salmon. The biggest recipient of stocked Atlantic Salmon is Lake Ontario.
    Ct. also stocks Sockeye Salmon fry in those few glacial lakes that support plankton and have a robust thermocline. An enemy to the sockeye fry are anything that eats zoo plankton and the two biggest culprits are land-locked alewife herring and zebra mussels. Competing for zoo plankton stunts the sockeye fry/fingerlings and the fishery suffers. Once the fry get to fishable sizes they are referred to as Kokanee Salmon. They are fun to catch and eat. Since they are plankton eaters you have to entice them to strike by trolling bright color spinners and spoons with fluorescent beads.
    Ct. does get surplus Atlantic Salmon breeders from Federal and State hatcheries in New England and they stock various rivers in the late fall for a winter salmon fishery. It starts as C&R only, and then moves into a catch and keep period since the Atlantics won't survive the summer. Those that do survive head downstream to the open ocean. The rivers are the Farmington sometimes and the Naugatuck River and the Shetucket River both of which are special regulation rivers. This gives a Ct. fisherman the opportunity to experience cold weather fishing for mature Atlantic Salmon ranging from 5lbs. to 15lbs.
    Rich M likes this.
  3. Rich M

    Rich M Scallywag
    Thread Started By

    We went up to ME once for landlocks - Grand Lake Stream. Was a fun time, most salmon we caught were say 14-18 inches, a few topped 20-24 inches. Mostly a streamer fly experience tho I did catch one or two on a dry fly and dad was getting them on nymphs. My cousin and I had our best success at night on streamers in the heavier current below of the dam.

    Had heard about the kokanee but never tried for them.

    I left the state just before they started stocking walleyes in Gardner and Coventry Lakes. Used to know a couple who specialized in catching 18-20 inch Crappie (not a typo) out of Coventry Lake. Their kid used some of the fish to teach folks how to do fish taxidermy. He was my taxidermist for a while, until i moved and stopped trying to preserve dead critters.

    Also, shortly before leaving, we went to Niagara NY twice to fish the river in the winter time for steelheads and lakers. Could see myself doing that more but long drive from here.
  4. George Buck

    George Buck Cabin Boy

    When I lived south of Buffalo we fished both Erie and Ontario tribs and the lower Niagara in the winter off of the ice bridges.
    I used a saltwater conventional surf rod with a three way rig and an egg sack and threw that out as far as I could, released line until it got to the bottom and then drifted it along. Good fishing but dangerous.
    The Ct. walleye program started in the early 90s. I was an Inland Fisheries volunteer and did night electro-shocking. About ten years into the program we got a walleye over 14lbs. The best lake is on the NY border in New Fairfield where I live, it is Squantz Pond. When I get back from Florida in early April I fish it multiple times a week. I cast jointed rapalas and other swimmers.
  5. Rich M

    Rich M Scallywag
    Thread Started By

    We used to do the night crawler harness and spinners behind a walking sinker type rig at a lake in VT. Catch one, put a coke bottle on it and then follow the school around until we were done for the day. Nothing crazy, 16-20 inch fish.

    I think we ice fished Squantz Pond once for pike - drove across state, walked out in waist deep snow, put out tip ups, started breakfast and drinking. Caught 1 fish all day - was the pike my cousin was looking for. Forget how big but 25-26 inches comes to mind.
  6. George Buck

    George Buck Cabin Boy

    If you were fishing for pike the premier lake is Bantam Lake, the largest natural lake in Ct. It is where the state started the pike program excepting the Ct. River which has its own reproducing population. Squantz is a walleye, trout, smallie, perch lake.
    There are spawning marshes in various spots that are diked off. They open up at ice out for the pike to move in and spawn and when the pike move out the marshes are closed off and the pike fry have their own body of water to feed and grow in. Then the fry/fingerlings are netted out and stocked in other spots in the state and the cycle repeats next early spring.
  7. Rich M

    Rich M Scallywag
    Thread Started By

    It's been a while, 25+ years.

    Pretty neat w bantam lake there, good management.

    Wish they'd stock more reds down here.
  8. George Buck

    George Buck Cabin Boy

    I did not know they stocked reds. But I have never caught a small red either. Maybe 12 inches is the smallest. Where do the fingerling reds hang out? I fish the upper Spruce Creek area which appears to be a nice area for juveniles but never catch anything small except pinfish and some under-sized stuff like sheepshead and trout.
  9. Rich M

    Rich M Scallywag
    Thread Started By

    They don't stock reds that I'm aware of. They used to and should get it going in the lagoon.

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