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  #31  
Old 01-06-2009, 06:23 PM
troutramp troutramp is offline
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trophy lyman walleye nobody fishes it!!!! just kidding, actually carnero is interesting because there are springs in they are maybe easily developed, but the dam would need to be raised to make it deeper that could be an expense so could wells springs ect. If becker is decided on it will be poached the people in that area are hard nosed and not easily convinced, all else considered i think it is a great lake because it could be done with little expense, and is already producing great fish. Luna has gone through one improvement years ago, but it might be too far out of the way, but it already produces great fish on occasion with little to no regulation. there is no "perfect" option here, I love the idea though. btw
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Last edited by troutramp; 01-06-2009 at 06:35 PM. Reason: terrible english.
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  #32  
Old 01-06-2009, 06:25 PM
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Salmo22 Salmo22 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelly Meyer View Post
This is a very opportune time to discuss long term management of Crescent Lake. We are starting a planning effort on half the lakes in the region from Carnero Lake east to the state border and south to Luna Lake (including all the lakes in this thread: Becker, Carnero, Crescent, Lee Valley, Big and Luna). We will be setting management emphases for all these waters, including which will be managed as trophy waters. The goal of this planning is to meet the needs of our anglers and customers by looking at each individual water and it’s biological potential and setting specific objectives of catch rates, sizes of fish and angler satisfaction. We will be deciding which lakes make the most sense for more restrictive regulation and which may require less restrictive regulations. This will be done in a way to divvy the resources so that we can provide for everyone’s needs. At the end of this planning process we will be making recommendations on regulation changes (or not) that will have to go through the agency, public meetings, and commission meetings to go into effect.

There will be an opportunity through this planning process for your concerns to be heard and we welcome them. The timeline for decision on whether the lake will have a trophy lake management emphasis which can be taken up the agency chain of command will probably be this June (we will probably be looking for public input a couple months before that). The timeline for setting any regulation changes in motion would be spring of 2010 since we are on a two year regulation cycle.
Kelly:

Thanks so much for your comments and insight. Opportunity is the very reason I'm pushing the idea of forming a organization similar to the Henry's Lake Foundation. As a life member of the HLF, I am very acquainted with the partnerships and successful projects they've helped to foster. I believe we have a large number of stillwater fly fishers that would support an Arizona based foundation to improve the lakes in the White Mountains. I also believe that forming such a foundation will help to focus and organize all the good ideas and intentions.

How do you suggest we stay informed on the AZG&F's plans/efforts? Also, how do we best create a partnership between our (hopefully soon to be) foundation and the appropriate agencies? Your recommendations on how to create these connections would be sincerely appreciated.

Regarding the elephant in the room - I believe enforcement will be an ongoing challenge no matter what happens in the future. For all the great aspects of Henry's Lake, they have their own enforcement, regulation and multi-user issues. That being said, I would prefer to work on resolving enforcement challenges for a group of trophy stillwater fisheries, rather than do nothing because the enforcement issues are not completely resolved.

Keep the comments coming
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  #33  
Old 01-06-2009, 07:28 PM
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Salmo22 Salmo22 is offline
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Originally Posted by troutramp View Post
good luck explaining to the residents of springerville\eagar that they can not fish thier lake with a worm and bobber I know there are regulations already in effect but just like chevlon, canyon creek , and other places enforcment is going to be cruciual, come to think of it at any lake designated
I am married to a gal from Alpine and I am fully aware of the "entitlement" mindset that many White Mountain residents have. My father-in-law actually believes it is his right as one of Alpine's native sons to ignore G&F regulations.

That being said, I also believe these mindsets can be changed. When these same residents see the $$$$$$$$ start to come thier way from the whacky fly fishers that want to fish a trophy lake and dump some cash in the local economy; viewpoints will shift. Don't kid yourself for one minute, the Henry's Lake Foundation, Henry's Fork Foundation, and other organizations use economic benefit analysis to help support thier efforts to enhance local fisheries. Especially in these economic times, it is part of the program to help the local residents understand how supporting the creation of trophy trout lakes will mean cash in their pockets.

Craig Mathews told me that some of his most ardent critics to protecting the Madison River have become his most valiant allies once they saw how it increased the tourist dollars for the region. It can be done!
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  #34  
Old 01-06-2009, 08:13 PM
WMF WMF is offline
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I am sure game and fish will have the foresight to look at enforcement when they chose a lake. Enforcement is one of the many key elements that will have to be addressed. I have full confidence that with the constant reminder, and vigilance on our part we can help game and fish in this respect as well. I do believe it will take a while to shift the mind set of some of the locals, seeing as the last time I was at Crescent there were 2 people who headed out as we rolled in, with 3 time the limit on there stringers. Mind set will change with economic data and some stiff fines.... In the mean time there is most likely a lot of work going on and that needs to go on before we get to worry about that! One of the things I look forward to is what fish the will put in said water! Think about how much fun we could have with that!!!
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  #35  
Old 01-06-2009, 08:18 PM
wildcat97 wildcat97 is offline
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one word .................................................. .................................................. .................................................. .................................................. ...........TRIPLOIDS! http://www.highlandoutfitters.com/Im...rd%20Trout.jpg



SINCE THE FISH DON'T REPRODUCE ANYWAYS LETS MAKE THEM HUGE!

Last edited by wildcat97; 01-06-2009 at 08:20 PM.
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  #36  
Old 01-07-2009, 09:20 AM
Dub Dub is offline
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Kelly

Thanks for the update, Kelly. It is good to see how AZG&F is taking on the task of finally trying to manage the lakes to sustain trout. I'm confident good things will come of this and I am looking forward to see what develops. As far as Crescent being a trophy trout lake...let's get the fish growing to thier full potential before we think about making reg changes. I think it's much more important to get our lakes in the condition needed to sustain our trout and keep them growing over a few seasons before we think special reg's. Believe me I am all for it but I think we may be better served by having not just one but several lakes that will grow big fish. Every year one or (at the most) two lakes seem to get all the pressure because the fish made it through the winter. How cool would it be if we had 5-6 lakes we could choose from to go catch big fish. It is better for everyone involved, including the fish that would get less pressure on them.
One major problem I see that has ALWAYS been a problem is enforcement of the law. You know as well as I do that whenever there are big fish to be caught someone always has to take more than thier share. This would have to be addressed.
Let's make this happen

John

P.S. Widcat 97....something may already be in the works.
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  #37  
Old 01-07-2009, 10:10 AM
troutramp troutramp is offline
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Yes 5-6 lakes would be awesome, if we had a couple of lakes that regularly produced 10lb trout that region would benefit economicaly that helps with the elephant issue, I wish we could include sunrise in the list I met some guys from texas that used to make the trip once or twice a year sunrise would benefit alot if the pipe from ono was fixed. Sunrise still grows huge trout problem is word gets out and the lake gets harvested like a corn field.
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  #38  
Old 01-07-2009, 01:37 PM
Kelly Meyer Kelly Meyer is offline
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Lot of things to discuss here:

First, appropriate regulations for the lakes. To me this is the most critical piece of the puzzle, at least for Becker. It comes down to objectives; the regulations at Becker are great if you are looking to grow the fish a little larger and harvest them in the 16 to 20 inch range. However, if your goal is to sustain large number of 20 inch trout year round then the current regulations will not do that. The reason is that the lake sustains fewer trout than we thought. Our creel surveys from last year showed the 18 inch and larger fish in the spring were all removed and only 250 trout were harvested. That is an average of one fish a day! This data makes it obvious that these larger fish cannot be sustained in this lake with any kind of bag limit. We have to rely on more restrictive regulations; we cannot educate them to do the right thing in releasing fish. One of the most amazing results from our survey last year is that 68% of the people who kept a fish would support catch and release regulation at Becker! The larger fish can be sustained but it will require catch and release or a length limit (of say 24 inches).

Law enforcement. Actually law enforcement issues were less of an impact than we thought. We did some undercover work last spring and found compliance for bag limits was 100% and compliance for bait was 94%. This does not mean that there are a few individuals who are bypassing the system. I can tell you this; our law enforcement people have a commitment to this lake. I can think of at least three of them that fish it regularly and want to see big fish in there as much as you or I. They are the ones that initiated the undercover operations. If you do see a violation, do not confront them write down a description and plate on their vehicle and call our hotline. If the game wardens can respond then they will.

Gear type. Our surveys showed that the treble hooks had little impact on mortality of these fish over last year. Mostly because mortality due to treble hooks is size selective. Mortality is lower on smaller fish and higher on larger fish. Anglers who used treble hooks threw back smaller fish that were probably not badly hooked and kept the larger trout. If we made the regulations C@R or a 24 inch limit than the trebles would have a major impact on the fishery.
Suggestions for getting the foundation off the ground and how it relates to the agency. I am not the expert on that but I think that would be a great discussion item when Dub meets with Kirk Young and some of us from Pinetop.

How can you help in the planning process? I think a good description of our planning process would be helpful here. The steps of our planning our:

1) Inventory of water including: current management, fish growth, type of anglers, current angler satisfaction, catch rates, sizes of fish, identifying water quality concerns, native fish concerns.

2) Meeting of expert group to decide management emphasis. We bring together the people who know the lake and the anglers best and have management authority of the lake to discuss management issues on the lakes and decide the best management emphasis. Some examples of a management emphasis would be family fishing were we want to have lots of bent rod time for kids, or trophy fishing where we want certain catch rates of larger trout. This group will be vendors (Big Lake store owner), Forest Service and Game and Fish biologists and recreation people, game wardens, irrigators, representatives from Lyman State Park, and the town of Eager.

3) Meeting of sub group to make sure that the management emphasis is consistent with native fish concerns.

4) Present management emphasis to the public and receive feedback on if they are suitable, make modifications if needed.

5) Write plan including:
a. Current management on size of fish, catch rates and angler use
b. specific objectives we want to reach on sizes of fish, catch rates, angler use
c. Potential tasks we can implement to meet objectives. This would include changing regulations, winter aeration etc

6) Implement tasks and do creel and population surveys to see if we are meeting new objectives

We could use your help a few places in the process. If it looked like the foundation had a good chance of becoming reality, we could use a representative in the expert group (step 2). Everyone is more than welcome to give input during step 4. The foundation can cherry pick what tasks they want to fund or help with in step 5c (and maybe even step 6). Finally, if we need to change regulations based on this process then we could use the groups help in supporting regulation changes during the normal commission process in 2010.

I almost forgot the last and most important part. Thank you guys for your interest in improving fishing up here. I am excited about the pontial of what we as a group can do up here. I am very thankful for the fly fishing community (our local chapter as well as the rest of you guys) for your willingness to volunteer an be proactive in improving fishing for everyone.

Last edited by Kelly Meyer; 01-07-2009 at 01:51 PM.
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  #39  
Old 01-07-2009, 11:26 PM
WMF WMF is offline
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Kelly is there anyway to predict how long each step will take, do you put target dates on each step?

Sounds like Becker just needs a regulation change to be on the right track. So Becker in general doesn't consume funds, or require much more effort beyond the regulation change that can be addressed in 2010, correct? If this is the case then John brings up a good point on which ever lake is most suitable for restoration. Special regulations could come after restoration, and Becker's success could prove to benchmark the regulation change for the next lake...
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  #40  
Old 01-08-2009, 08:06 AM
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tenpoundlunker tenpoundlunker is offline
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I think cresent would be an excellent choice. It would be great to catch footballs out of there again. Another option for that lake to help fund it could be make it a pay to play lake like Earl Park. Charge a $10-15 a day fee to fish it. That would keep the bait-chuckers away (hopefully) and help support the day to day expenses to maintain the lake. I would be more than willing to pay a little for a quality fishery.
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