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Jumping Fish and Anchored Mussels…Who Knew?

We have been sending emails to you all summer, trying to keep you informed of the laws and what South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks is doing to try and slow the spread of aquatic invasive species (AIS) in our great state.

We thought with the dog days of summer upon us, we would lighten the mood a little with a few interesting facts about AIS.

1. Asian carp were brought to the U.S. in the mid-1970’s to help clean commercial catfish rearing ponds, but did you know that in terms of aquaculture (producing fish for food),these carp are the fourth most produced fish in the world? They are a valued fish for eating and are extinct due to overfishing in much of their home range. Here is a video showing how to clean and prepare silver carp.

2. Asian carp are vocacious eaters of plankton and can eat 20%- 40% of their body weight in the micro-organism every day!

3. Although they prefer lakes, they require large rivers for spawning.  The eggs are semi-buoyant and it is believed they must remain suspended in the water column to survive. [Read more…]


How to not Launch Your Boat By Gary Howey

  Over the years, I’ve spent a lot of time setting at boat ramps waiting to launch and load my boat.

  Most of these were quick and painless, but a few that really sucked!

  Most anglers or boaters know where I’m coming from, when you have a 20 to 30-minute wait while there’s someone who is trying to launch their boat.

  More than likely, there will be several other boats who are in the water waiting to get to the dock that will have to cruise around the bay, with others waiting in their vehicle as one-boat clutters up the launching area.

  I’m sure the person who is doing this wouldn’t be doing it on purpose, they just aren’t aware of proper boat ramp etiquette.

  Most of you reading this column have run into similar situations.

 Another thing that will drive a person crazy who’s trying to launch their boat is the person that pulls into the boat ramp with their tarp on the boat, backs down just short of the water and then proceeds to remove the tarp while other boaters waiting to launch.

 Or how about the person that backs down to the water only to spend the next ten-minutes unloading all the ski equipment, inner tubes and picnic supplies into the boat?

Then there’s the person who backs down, unhooks his boat and ties it to the dock, then heads off to park his vehicle.  While he’s up there, he uses the bathroom and then five-minute later makes his way down to the boat.  As he finally pulls away from the dock, he can’t understand why the people in the six or eight boats waiting to launch behind him are not very friendly.

  Then how about those who pulls up to the dock, tie up, right where the next boat needs to launch and then heads up to get his rig and trailer.  

  With low water ramps and the distance a person has to go to park their trailer, it takes quite a while for you to get to and from the ramp and to the parking area.  If a boater or angler doesn’t launch or load the boat properly, it can tie up a boat dock and really screw things up.

  How about the person who backs their boat down to the dock, hits the starter and realizes the motor is not going to start.  Instead of putting the boat back on the trailer and pulling it up into the parking area to check it out, decides to pull the cover off the motor and thinks that the boat dock is a good place to overhaul the engine. [Read more…]


Going deep with Lead Core by Gary Howey

  The thermometer says it’s close to 100 degrees out there, and everything getting “hot.” With temperatures like those that we’re having, the summer sun warms everything up, including the water, the warmer water forces fish to go deep to find comfortable water temperatures.

  To many anglers, it’s one of the toughest times of the year to catch walleyes, as deep-water fishing is something that many anglers don’t do that often.

 Some fish a deep-water using snap weight that’s attached to the line out in front of a crankbait, while others use bottom bouncers with spinners or crankbaits, which works fine until the fish you’re after suspended in the tops of submerged trees.

 If you’ve fished over submerged trees, you know the depth the trees lie in can vary from a few inches to a few feet.  If you’re fishing these areas using

bottom bouncers/spinners or with crankbaits, you’re going to be hung up and loose tackle.

  When going deep for walleyes is when Lead Core on a line counter reel really shines, allowing you to put your crankbait to the exact depth the fish are using. When you catch a fish, it allows you to return to about the same depth.

  What exactly is Lead Core and how does it work?

  The easiest way to describe Lead Core is that it’s a line where metered colored Dacron is woven around a lead wire core. It’s available in numerous pound tests including: 12, 15, 18, 27 and 45# with the breaking strength measured using the outside Dacron’s breaking strength.

  The heavier pound Lead Core take up a lot of room on a reel as it’s larger in diameter and contains more lead in its inside the Dacron sheath.

  When fishing Lead Core, I run 27# as it works well for the lakes that I fish.

 With the line you’re able to fish deep because the line sinks, allowing you to get your baits down where the fish are located during the heat of summer. [Read more…]