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FFIM is a non-profit organization devoted to promoting and preserving Maine's fisheries
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PostPosted: March 31st, 2010, 9:41 am 
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Not really- more sarcastic than anything.

Just trying to point out that using a state not know for exceptional brook trout fishing isn't necessarily the best benchmark for comparison purposes. I realize VT has brook trout fisheries, and know some are good, but overall- not sure I would use them as a reference mark.

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PostPosted: March 31st, 2010, 9:47 am 
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But then again, what state does compare to Maine for native brookies?


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PostPosted: March 31st, 2010, 9:56 am 
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MI regulations: general law - 5 trout in aggregate, no more than 3 of any one species, 10" minimum

many exceptions exist, however


interestingly, they really push ecosystem based management (something NOAA has been pushing for saltwater management for years); in my looking for the special regs i got sidetracked, and found this much more interesting http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,1607,7-15 ... --,00.html


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PostPosted: March 31st, 2010, 10:26 am 
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K. I. Joe wrote:
... How many of you say the fishing was better years ago?? Why?? Increased access you say?? Increased access means increased harvest


KIJ, I posed the question on FFIM a few years back to "veteran flyfishermen" as to how the current fishing compared to that of a couple of decades ago, and the responses were overwhelmingly neutral, some positives, especially seeing how we now have fisheries like Shawmut that didn't exist a few decades ago. Of course, there were some folks that felt that the fisheries they were familiar with had declined.

I started flyfishing "seriously" in the seventies, and I guess all the places that were so spectacular then escaped me, as I never saw the kind of fishing that some folks reminisce about.

Increased access doesn't necessarily translate to increased harvest, as there's a much greater personal C&R and/or moderation ethic now, and bag limits in general are much lower than they were a few decades ago, particularly on most of our true blue ribbon waters, which typically have a 1 fish a day bag, and most folks opting to release everything.

I think posting a new "veteran's poll" would be a great idea.


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PostPosted: March 31st, 2010, 3:45 pm 
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Rory wrote:
we now have fisheries like Shawmut that didn't exist a few decades ago.


Does Shawmut still actually exist?


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PostPosted: March 31st, 2010, 7:04 pm 
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Rory wrote:
K. I. Joe wrote:
... How many of you say the fishing was better years ago?? Why?? Increased access you say?? Increased access means increased harvest


KIJ, I posed the question on FFIM a few years back to "veteran flyfishermen" as to how the current fishing compared to that of a couple of decades ago, and the responses were overwhelmingly neutral, some positives, especially seeing how we now have fisheries like Shawmut that didn't exist a few decades ago. Of course, there were some folks that felt that the fisheries they were familiar with had declined.

I started flyfishing "seriously" in the seventies, and I guess all the places that were so spectacular then escaped me, as I never saw the kind of fishing that some folks reminisce about.

Increased access doesn't necessarily translate to increased harvest, as there's a much greater personal C&R and/or moderation ethic now, and bag limits in general are much lower than they were a few decades ago, particularly on most of our true blue ribbon waters, which typically have a 1 fish a day bag, and most folks opting to release everything.

I think posting a new "veteran's poll" would be a great idea.


Rory, in my neck of the woods there are plenty of people who eat fish and lots of them. Many of the locals around here go back and catch another limit until the limits stop coming so in my little area of Maine I think that improved access equals less fish in the pond or stream.
Most of the people that I talk to have their own secret spots and they are most always off the beaten path. I agree on the big named waters that I dont see many fish being kept and that is good in my opinion but on the smaller, general law, easy access ponds I see limit after limit going home and head after head of cleaned trout in the water.
From my own observations and I dont consider myself to be an expert to say the least, but I find that most spots fished better years ago. Not all of the spots but most and the spots that seem to hold up the best are the ones that you have to walk too.
Just my opinion and I appreciate yours.

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PostPosted: April 1st, 2010, 6:03 am 
Certainly we can all go running around this topic back and forth about the current state of Maine's Fishing. I think I've certainly beat that drum and horse to dang near death.

The license data is pretty solid that not as many angler are angling in Maine as there once were. To a limited degree it mirrors national license sales data. Recent license sales data appears to show an increase in other states during the recession while Maine is relatively flat.

This is most apparent when we look at the non-resident sales trends. And I'm sure there are a number of tourism related businesses that also indicate their fishing visits are down.

Is the fishing quality up and down in Maine compared to 20---30 years ago? I think the answer lies in who you ask.

From an out-of-state tourism point of view that Maine to Maine comparison doesn't matter. All that matters is how it is compared to other places...and the bigger question...are we losing angler visits to those with higher fishing quality? The data I've been looking at over the past decade certainly would indicate that we are...and not just a little. While we can pundify on the intertubes all we want..this is an economic argument that is probably best made by those who are hurting due to the drop in out-of-state tourism related to fishing.

From an in-state tourism point of view, the Maine to Maine comparison does matter. From looking at this site, it's pretty clear out-of-Maine fishing by Mainer's holds a lot of appeal...especially to those who have the $$ to spend other places. I can only speak for myself when I say that I am saving my money and taking it elsewhere to fish this year specifically because I cannot get the quality of fishing I want in Maine.

Even some of those who support Maine's status quo something wicked are quick to whip out their pictures of them catching bigger fish in other states.

It is what it is.

I guess what matters is what we can do moving forward and all of that lies in how the MDIFW manages moving forward. I think there's a lot of ground that can be made up using the approach Rory notes here. In a sense it satisfies a lot of constituencies...allowing harvest where it can be supported but improving certain "quality" characteristics of the fishery...i.e. #s of larger fish available for angling.


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PostPosted: April 1st, 2010, 6:46 am 
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Matt wrote:
Rory wrote:
we now have fisheries like Shawmut that didn't exist a few decades ago.


Does Shawmut still actually exist?


Well..... :shock: Shawmut actually still exists; but "Shawmut" (in quotes) doesn't; and anybody reading this that's ever fished there knows there's a BIG difference between the two.

Putting in 2000 trout/year....when the Ospreys using the area are in all probability taking out 1800 isn't ever going to get us back to the "Shawmut" (in quotes) that many of us dearly love (or is it loved......past tense).

I've been after Bobby Van Riper to put in 5000 to 7000 Browns to jump start that fishery again. (Sorry to de-rail the present thread).

Dave M

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PostPosted: April 1st, 2010, 6:56 am 
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Jeff Levesque wrote:

From an in-state tourism point of view, the Maine to Maine comparison does matter. From looking at this site, it's pretty clear out-of-Maine fishing by Mainer's holds a lot of appeal...especially to those who have the $$ to spend other places. I can only speak for myself when I say that I am saving my money and taking it elsewhere to fish this year specifically because I cannot get the quality of fishing I want in Maine.

Even some of those who support Maine's status quo something wicked are quick to whip out their pictures of them catching bigger fish in other states.


Now Jeff.......you very well know that you are using facts and logic here. Some of the biggest proponents of the status quo in Maine all have Great Lakes pictures that they're trying to show off to the uniniatiated as Maine fish.

I actually just this week booked a place here in Maine for the peak of the June prime time season that in years past I'd have had to have booked last fall to get these dates. The owners seemed damned pleased to get the business and fill those dates, too. Frankly....I should have been amazed to be able to book this late.....but wasn't surprised at all. Owners of fishing camps (and you'd all know where I'm talking about) have to be hurting big-time if they still have open dates/camps for the primo fishing this late.

Dave M

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PostPosted: April 1st, 2010, 8:25 am 
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Sorry for the hijack but I just had to say.....

One of the greatest bargains in the entire world of flyfishing is the Maine Fishing Camp. With very very few exceptions it exists nowhere else.

Yes we're going out west again this year but we're also going to spend time at Pierce Pond in June and to be honest I'm looking forward to that more than the western trip.

As for the place that Dave booked recently, the only reason he was able to get it so late is that I heard it was all fished out, poachers you know. (Cap told me)

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PostPosted: May 13th, 2017, 9:26 pm 
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:D Hi, I was poking around the internet and found this thread about Kwagama Lake Lodge and the fishing there. I have been going there every year since 2008. I guess I am qualified to comment about the lake. It is scud shaped about 3.5 miles by 1 mile in size. There are lots of deep areas. The deepest is 140 feet. What makes it so special is that it sits at the top of the watershed. No rivers flow into the lake. No foreign species survive. It is filled with native brook trout, there is no record of it ever being stocked. The brook trout share the lake with Northern Redbellied Dace, crawfish, leeches, scuds and a variety of insects. That is about it. The flesh of the trout is as dark red as Sockeye Salmon because of the scud buffet they enjoy. For the first 5 years I never caught a trout less that 14 inchs. The past 5 years there have caught some 4, 6, 8, 10 and 12 inch fish. I am actually really happy about this. That tells me that trout factory we call Kwagama is doing really well in all fish classes. There is plenty of reproduction going on there. As for all the dead fish it doesn't bother me in the least. In the past 10 years I have let many hundreds of fish go, tons of them from Kwagama but there is about nothing that I enjoy more than a brook trout dinner sitting in the dining room of this northwood fishing lodge. That dinner is the highlight of each trip. I would encourage people to first understand the tiny amount of fishing pressure at Kwagama before criticizing the harvest. The lake is isolated, no roads in, no cabins save the lodge. Fishermen arrive about May 15 thru July 15 and again in September. It is effectively a 90 day season. It is a 4 square mile lake that sees maybe 140 fishermen per year.

Finally, my wife and I found ourselves having Thanksgiving dinner...that was unique, but to top it off, we enjoyed the two ruby red fleshed Kwagama Lake brook trout that were in my freezer...I enjoyed every bite and I enjoyed the memories of the trip all over again. I hope each of you gets a chance to enjoy your favorite spot as much as I enjoy Kwagama.


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