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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-20-2012, 02:25 AM Thread Starter
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Draft Musky Fisheries Management Plan

Public Meeting Scheduled on
Draft Musky Fisheries Management Plan


HARRISBURG, Pa. – The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) will host an evening meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 2, in Allegheny County to preview its draft Muskellunge Fisheries Management Plan and receive comments from the public.

The meeting will be held on Oct. 2 at 6:30 p.m. at the Rose Barn facility in North Park, located on Pearce Mill Road in Allison Park. The meeting is free and the public is encouraged to attend and share their comments with PFBC staff.

“The plan focuses on recent management changes made to enhance muskellunge and tiger muskellunge fishing,” said Dave Miko, chief of the PFBC Division of Fisheries Management. “Biologists will also discuss changes that are being proposed, including increasing the length of muskellunge which are stocked and eliminating stocking at some of the less popular waters.”

Following the staff’s presentation, the public will have an opportunity to provide comments. Interested individuals can register online to provide comments at this link. During the meeting, individuals who have signed up online will have the opportunity to provide comments first.

The draft fisheries management plan will be available on September 20 on the PFBC website at www.fishandboat.com/musky-plan.htm. If someone cannot attend the meeting, written comments can be submitted online.

The mission of the Fish and Boat Commission is to protect, conserve, and enhance the Commonwealth’s aquatic resources and provide fishing and boating opportunities. For more information about fishing and boating in Pennsylvania, please visit our website at www.fishandboat.com.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-12-2012, 03:45 PM
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Re: Draft Musky Fisheries Management Plan

A few of us attended the meeting. Here is a brief summary of some of the high points...

They reviewed the draft copy of the plan and opened it up to public comment, which will be taken online until November 30th.

They spoke about the stocking program and how they have increased the size (length and weight) of fingerlings stocked greatly since 2007.

Every year they spend roughly $600,000 on musky stocking and produce the second highest total of muskies in the entire US.

They spoke about the use of PIT tags to track the egg laden females in the sanctuary (currently in use), and CWT tags to track fingerling muskies after 3 years of growth to determine native/stocked populations (going to be studied in 2013).

One female, PIT tagged in Pymatuning in 2007 at 38.5", 13 lbs , was recaptured in the sanctuary in 2010 at 50", 39 lbs... an amazing 6", 13lbs a year!

There is already an "Enhanced Musky" Program on the regulation books, which would limit a lake to a 45" size limit and 1 per day creel limit. There are currently no lakes under these regulations, but could potentially be in the future.

They want to study the results of the increase from 30"-40" size limit next year in 8 lakes in the state. They would like to collect 5 years of data to compare with the previous data they have, in order to determine results. Pymatuning would be used as a "control" lake, since the size limit is still set at 30".

Data will be collected on rivers, where data is historically void due to difficulty of sampling. Traditional trap net techniques aren't as effective, and therefore, different methods are needed to sample and gather "baseline" data on these waters.

Along with that, waters will be sampled to determine if there is more natural reproduction than previously thought. It was always "believed" to be very little, but there was never a study to determine if that was truly the case.

It was originally proposed as a 30" to 36" size limit increase by the state, but through the angler comment period, anglers asked for a 40" size limit and the board agreed. So public comment matters!!!!! http://www.fishandboat.com/musky-plan.htm
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-18-2012, 01:31 PM
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Re: Draft Musky Fisheries Management Plan

Glad they are studying natural reproduction
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-18-2012, 02:44 PM
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Re: Draft Musky Fisheries Management Plan

They mentioned at the meeting that currently only one place is managed for natural reproduction... it was either the north or west branch of the susky.
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