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I would like to take a minute to make a “Public Service Announcement”…The Michigan DNR is considering and discussing steelhead regulation (bag limit) changes.   Last Wednesday the Natural Resource Commissioners met to discuss a reduction in Steelhead bag limits.  The MDNR is seeing declining returns at the Little Manistee weir each spring and anglers state-wide are reporting reduced catch rates.  Bottom line is there are fewer steelhead returning each year…there are many, many underlying issues that are causing the decrease.  (I do not have time to get into the details and/or theories…maybe this winter I will have time to write more?).  This is not a matter of how you prefer to fish for steelhead; it’s a matter of increasing catch rates and number of spawning steelhead.  We need to voice our options to the MDNR and NRC prior to the next meeting in December.  Please support a year round reduced bag limit for steelhead in Michigan rivers.  No kill on all wild steelhead (identifiable by an intact adipose fin) in all Michigan rivers.  And a 1 fish bag limit on hatchery steelhead in all Michigan rivers.

It is up to us to protect and preserve this amazing sport fish in Michigan.  Please take a moment of your valuable time to write the DNR Fisheries Department- Jim Dexter [email protected], Jay Wesley [email protected] and the Natural Resources Commission (NRC) [email protected] to let them know that we need to make changes now rather than later so we can save the steelhead populations before it’s too late!

Thank you very much!!!!

Fishing Report

We did finally get a shot of rain/snow/sleet and it colored the water for a minute.  The river is back to normal flows and clear.  Water temps have been dropping with cold nights and cold rains…holding in the mid to low 40’s for the time being.  But the fish are still HOT!  There are certainly more fish that moved through the lower river during the “bump” in water, but not a big push of fish.  There are fish throughout the entire system, but we are working for opportunities.

I have still been mixing it up with flies, plugs/spinners and some beads (Not in the fly water…of course…beads are illegal in the fly water).  The plug bite has been good while the fly bite is slow and vise versa some days.  A mixed bag attack has paid off for us in these conditions. Pale colored egg patterns and cheese colored nukes have been the best for me.  Some nymphs (hexes, stones, caddis and pheasant tails) have been productive also.  Streamers are starting to become more and more consistent with overcast weather.  Bright headed leeches or copper/greens have been getting some grabs.

I gotta run…not enough time and too much to get done before heading back on the river for the next week.  Thanks for keep us so busy this month!!!  It is appreciated very much!  I still have a couple dates open still November 27 – 30 and December 1, 2, 5 – 9….just contact the shop…231-745-3529.

Here are a couple that did NOT get away…

Greg and Jim with their first Wild Michigan steelhead!

Matt and Josh bagged a couple on a fun day

Mike O and I enjoying “Opening Day”…great spending the day with you on the river! Thanks for the boat ride
Jim with a couple dandies on a switch rod bobber rig

Tom also elected to fly fish and was rewarded

Looking forward to the upcoming trips and hunting the Pere Marquette River for Wild Steelhead.  Enjoy the resource and please respect your fellow anglers.  Good luck and see you out there.

Later,

John

 

 

1 COMMENT

  1. John, thanks for the heads up on the proposed reg changes. Emails sent this morning from me and everyone i know who enjoys the PM.

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