Hey yall. How is your winter going so far? Had an interest in doing some ice fishing? There is a fellow that took the time to write to me this week. Here is what he wrote,
"Hi, I love your articles in the Daily ME. I have a Recreation Home in Starks and this has been my first year of fishing in Maine. I've gone on the Kennebec River in Madison and Clearwater Pond with my kids. I can't wait for Ice Fishing time. I live in Rhode Island and we get only a week or less of safe ice to fish here a year. I can't wait to try my luck using tilts and jigging in Maine. How soon before the ice starts getting safe in Maine? I look at the weather for Maine and find the temperature below freezing for some time now but I see how big those lake and ponds are compared to here. Thank you for the fine reading each week Ralph Nahigian"
I sent him a reply suggesting that he drives north till he find solid ice to fish on. It's not worth loosing a life for a little fun on the ice. I know that I wouldn't try it until Christmas vacation for pickerel and perch. The way things are going we should have some fine solid black ice. Hopefully we will have a booming ice fishing season.
Lake Wassookeag in Dexter would be my fist choice if I wanted fat salmon and lake trout. The smelt that the fisheries biologists have been stocking in the spring are taking hold and feeding our fishery.
At the meeting last year the biologists told us that they have been putting smelt eggs in certain streams that feed Wassookeag Lake. They said some of the parents might have been dwarf smelt meaning that they never get above 3 to 4 inches. Now that is a fine size for fish food but not that great for human consumption, and most of us love a smelt feed. If you don't know where to fish the lake, stop by PJ's Bait Shop. Jim has a shop right beside the lake on the way to Greenville. Jim will take the time to share a few secrets with anyone that will ask. He's a great guy and has fresh bait. Give him a call at 924-5082 to find out how thick the ice is. Check out his web site.
If you do fish Wassookeag this winter and catch Lake Trout, please take home a legal fish. The biologists are tell us the lake trout population is gaining in number and we may have the same problem that Moosehad Lake faces. The biologists may lower the length limit on Lake trout to 18 inches, and if that does help then they may allow us 2 lakers per day. With the salmon doing so well, some are naturally reproduced and only 500 are stocked, things could get lop sided. If you have more mouths to feed than feed, then we would see the decline in health. The biologists call this the "K" factor. Lake Wassookeag has many more mouths to feed than many of us know. Every fish loves to eat smelt. Smelt have a high oil content thus a high calorie food. Next week we will look at the different fish species that are found in Wassookeag Lake, otherwise known as Dexter Lake.
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