Posted on February 12, 2014 | Permalink
Deep Creek Lake Ice Fishing Adventure
Location: Deep Creek Lake
The Northern Garrett High School Envirothon Club, teacher Rebecca Kenyon-Sisler and I ventured out onto the thick ice of Deep Creek Lake to have some fun ice fishing - a first time experience for all the students and the teacher. We made our own ice-rods by simply duct-taping a reel to the top part of a two-piece rod, tied on a # 10 hook, attached a bobber and a couple of sinkers to the line, and used live minnows for bait. Thank goodness we had a power auger to get through the 12 inches of solid ice! It wasn't long before the first bobber was pulled under the ice and a nice 19.5 inch Chain Pickerel was soon on top of the ice. Every student caught at least one fish, and the cold day was made more tolerable with a large thermos of hot chocolate and homemade brownies!
Pictured: 1) Emily Fratz with her first Chain Pickerel 2) the Envirothon Club: Rebecca Kenyon-Sisler, Katie Carpenter, Blake Upole, Madi Gallagher with her jumbo Yellow Perch, Emily Fratz, and Brandon Raley. 3) Rebecca with her 13.75 inch Yellow Perch, and 4) Katie with her last-minute Yellow Perch
Posted on October 4, 2013 | Permalink
NBPR C&R Trout Fishing Area Survey
Location: North Branch Potomac River C&R Trout Fishing Area
The upper North Branch Potomac River Catch and Return Trout Fishing Area Survey:
The upper North Branch Potomac River C&R Trout Fishing Area (just downstream of the Jennings Randolph Lake) was recently surveyed to monitor the status of the trout population. We did document a relatively low density of Rainbow Trout and Brown Trout, however there were some trophy-sized wild trout in the population. Wild Rainbow Trout up to 20 inches and Brown Trout measuring 13 inches were collected. A fall stocking of Rainbow Trout will take place this month to improve fishing in this section of the river. Also the Put and Take Trout Fishing Areas at Barnum and Westernport will receive a total of 1,600 Rainbow Trout in October. The Garrett College Fisheries Management Class provided the necessary manpower to conduct the survey.
Pictured: 1) Garrett College Class with trophy Rainbow Trout 2) Rainbow Trout 3) Brown Trout
Posted on September 27, 2013 | Permalink
Youghiogheny River C&R Trout Fishing Area Survey
Location: Youghiogheny River C&R Trout Fishing Area
The Inland Fisheries Service with the valuable assistance of Garrett College's Fisheries Management Class recently conducted fish population surveys in the Youghiogheny River Catch and Return Trout Fishing Area. We collected a lot of recently stocked Rainbow Trout in the 8 - 10 inch size class as well as a lot of Brown Trout in the 6 - 8 inch size class from fingerling stockings during the summer, showing good growth and survival rates. The best part of the surveys were the trophy sized Brown Trout and Rainbow Trout at each station we sampled. Brown Trout measuring up to 23 inches and Rainbow Trout measuring up 18 inches were collected. Several chunky Smallmouth Bass were collected, providing additional fishing opportunities.
Pictures 1) Trophy Rainbow Trout 2) Garrett College students posing with trophy Brown Trout 3) Smallmouth Bass 4) Fisheries Tech Jon Folk with lunker Brown Trout
Posted on September 11, 2013 | Permalink
Good Day on the Youghiogheny River C&R Trout Fishing Area
Location: Yough River C&R Trout Fishing Area
My son Kyle and I recently had a great afternoon fly-fishing the Yough River C&R Trout Fishing Area. The trout were eagerly taking green-bodied Elk hair Caddis fished across the current, then "skittered" back upstream. We ended up each catching more than a dozen trout, a mix of Brown Trout and Rainbow Trout, the largest being about 14 inches.
Pictures 1) Rainbow Trout 2) Brown Trout 3) Kyle with Rainbow Trout
Posted on August 27, 2013 | Permalink
Savage River Trophy Trout Fishing Area
Location: Savage River
The Inland Fisheries Service recently surveyed the Savage River Trophy Trout Fishing Area. We electrofished one station within the Fly-Only section and one station in the Artificial Lures and Fly section, and both areas contained an impressive trout population. The estimated density within the Fly-Only section was 1,434 adult trout per mile and 766 young of year trout per mile. The Artificial Lure/Fly section has a density of 1,302 adult trout and 326 young of year trout per mile. Brown Trout are the dominate species, comprising about 84% of the population, followed by 13% Brook Trout, and 2% Rainbow Trout. One Cutthroat Trout was collected in each station, and these fish were stocked in the North Branch Potomac River as fingerlings a couple of years ago. Due to recent heavy rains, the Savage River Tailwater will be flowing higher than normal for this time of year until ample water storage in the Savage Reservoir is available.
Pictured are: 1. Kyle Klotz with Brook Trout 2. Ryan Cooper with Brown Trout 3. Cutthroat Trout 4. Drew Miller with Rainbow Trout
Posted on June 28, 2013 | Permalink
Bluegill fishing at Pleasant Valley Lake
Location: Pleasant Valley Lake
Dry fly fishing for Bluegills in Pleasant Valley Lake at the 4-H Center in Bittinger, MD has been fantastic during the last couple of weeks. My niece Stephanie was visiting from out of state to help out with our Brook Trout studies and asked "What is fly-fishing?" She was soon to find out that evening at the lake, after some brief instructions - she made a nice cast and caught a decent Bluegill on her very first try! She and cousin Kyle caught several nice Bluegills on elk-hair caddis, and these fish put up quite a fight when hooked on the fly-rod.
Pictured is 1) Stephanie with her first Bluegill 2) Kyle with one of his Bluegills 3) and a typical Pleasant Valley Lake Bluegill.
Posted on June 19, 2013 | Permalink
Fishing Report From The North Branch
Location: North Branch Potomac River
Here are a few pictures of fish waiting to be caught in the North Branch Potomac River's Zero Creel Limit Trout Fishing Area and the overlapping Black Bass Catch and Return Fishing Area from the McCoole Fisheries Management Area downstream five miles to the Gary Yoder Fisheries Management Area at Black Oak, and then downstream another 9 miles to the Pinto Area. Both Rainbow Trout and Brown Trout were found in these sections of the river, however at lower abundance levels compared to upstream areas (Westernport to McCoole). Trout were found in the faster runs and the very deep pools. A lot of scrappy Smallmouth Bass averaging about 6 to 10 inches were collected, however we did not collect a lot of quality-sized bass. The abundance of the smaller bass should bode well for the future. We observed good numbers of Fallfish - a large minnow species, so anglers can expect to catch a bunch of these fish that fight just like a trout. There are public access sites at the McCoole Fisheries Management Area and downstream at the Gary Yoder Fisheries Management Area. The Pinto area currently has no public access, so permission from private property owners needs to be secured before accessing the river at this location. Also, there are some boulder-strewn runs - especially between McCoole and Black Oak, so canoeist should use caution in this section of the river.
Pictured is Fisheries Technician Jon Folk with 1) Smallmouth Bass 2) Brown Trout 3) Rainbow Trout 4) Fallfish
Posted on June 18, 2013 | Permalink
Fish Survey Results
Location: North Branch Potomac River's Zero Creel Limit (C&R) Trout Fishing Area
The Western Region Fisheries crew recently conducted a fish population survey in the North Branch Potomac River's Zero Creel Limit (C&R) Trout Fishing Area from Westernport downstream to the McCoole Fisheries Management Area. The river is chocked-full of Rainbow Trout, from fingerling size to about 15 inches (and we did see a couple in the 20 inch range that we were unable to net). The Brown Trout population is dominated by large fish, as most of the Brown Trout we collected were in the 16 to 19 inch size class. Smallmouth Bass were also common, and the larger size Smallmouth Bass were found within this section of the river. The river is big water, with a very slippery boulder substrate. The best way to fish here is to float from the Westernport access at the mouth of Georges Creek downstream four miles to the McCoole Fisheries Management Area. This stretch is not for novices as there are a few drops and boulder-strewn rapids. There are local float-fishing guide services that I would recommend for the first-time angler.
Pictured is Fisheries Technician Jon Folk with 1) Brown Trout 2) Brown Trout 3) Brown Trout 4) Smallmouth Bass 5) Rainbow Trout
Posted on June 17, 2013 | Permalink
Deep Creek Lake Survey
Location: Deep Creek Lake
The Western Region Fisheries staff recently completed a comprehensive fish community survey in Deep Creek Lake, surveying 20 stations throughout all habitat areas of the lake. The sample was quite impressive in terms of both numbers of fish and the quality size of the gamefish and panfish. The yellow perch population is truly extraordinary, in just about each station we collected specimens in the 12 to 14 inch size range. Large bluegills and pumpkinseeds were also common and were still in the pre-spawn condition. It was encouraging to see better numbers and sizes of largemouth bass this year, many fish greater than 15 inches with a 22 inch 6 lb trophy collected in the northern end of the lake. While fish were present in all shoreline habitats, the shallow ends of coves with aquatic vegetation held the most number and diversity of fish - so anglers should target those areas for a great fishing experience.
Pictured is Fisheries Technician Marcus Wilson with 1) Pumpkinseed 2) Largemouth Bass 3) Yellow Perch 4) Brown Bullhead 5)Smallmouth Bass
Posted on June 14, 2013 | Permalink
Savage River Reservoir Sampling
Location: Savage River
The Western Region Fisheries staff have been very busy sampling lakes and rivers in Western Maryland - so we would like to share some updates on the fish populations on those areas. The Savage River Reservoir was completely drained in 2009 and re-filled by March 2010 to make necessary gate repairs within the dam, and since that time MD DNR has completed an aggressive re-stocking initiative. Our recent survey shows that the fish species community is now very similar to what it was prior to the reservoir draining. While we didn't "crunch the numbers" yet - it looks like the fishery is well on its way to full recovery. Yellow Perch are very abundant, with a lot of fish in the 7 to 10 inch range, plenty of Bluegills and Pumpkinseeds, and a surprising number of quality sized Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass. Rainbow Trout from put and take adult stockings are doing very well, as we observed many trout surfacing to eat insects during our survey.
Pictured is Fisheries Technician Marcus Wilson with 1) Yellow Perch 2) Black Crappie 3) Largemouth Bass 4) Bluegill 5) Rock Bass