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Discussion in 'Catfish Discussion' started by flathunter, May 26, 2004.

  1. flathunter

    flathunter Mellons mentor

    I work with a guy who is an avid paylaker..He told me of 5 new paylakes that have opened just this year in southwest and south central Ohio..He named off 23 paylakes that are in a 40 mile radius..I had no idea there was that many of them, and they are growing :(
  2. flathunter

    flathunter Mellons mentor

    He told me he has landed 5 cats over 50-lbs this year, and 19 over 30lbs..I told him it was nothing to brag about and he got kinda mad :D This is where all the Cats are going :mad:..I was telling this to my wife and she said if you cant beat them join them..I think I will throw away my cattin gear before I do that!

  3. Go to alot of bait shops and check out the "Wheeler Dealer" type books. There are tons of them out there. There is one called Long's pay lake fifteen miles from me that opened last year. The guy used to sell fish to catfisherman's paradise.
  4. Stampede

    Stampede The Fish Feeder

    I don't like paylakes either.I think it's to easy catching fish in a confined water.Most are like small ponds, the fish have no choice but to eat what's thrown out.Not much food source there.
  5. H2O Mellon

    H2O Mellon Hangin' With My Gnomies

    Most of us 'catters have the same idea abotu paylakes, I will admit that I went to one this year, but it was mainly to have a night out w/ my 5 year old & wife. The area of the GMR that I usually fish is too dangerous to fish w/ them at night, plus it was too early in the season & all the 5 river metro parks closed at dark.

    My plan was to put anything I catch into the GMR. I knwo that the biggest tackle shop in my area does this. The guys that work there go to the local paylake, then transfer the cats, both flats & channels to the GMR. I know that all these cats dont make it, but if only half make it then I say do it.

    I could go on & on, but once again im at work. I cant wait 'til I get some free time, 'casue im going to post like a mad man!
  6. Where do the people that own the pay lakes get the cats? I know you said that is where all the cats have gone but who is catching them and from what waters? I thought is was illegal to sell fish that you caught?
  7. mrfishohio

    mrfishohio Recovering Fishaholic

    They can come from fish farms, hatcheries, and mostly commercial fisherman. As you stated it's not legal for an individual to sell fish to a paylake. There's probably some loophole in that. One, right off the top would be if you had your own farm pond or leased one, I guess you could stock it via legal means. Rod & reel catches & 3 trot lines with 50 hooks each or up to 50 limb lines in a stream or river. Once you owned the fish (in your pond) I think one may be permitted to sell them or something. I know there's a loophole in there somewhere because I brought it up once & this guy told me there's a loophole they use to get around buying fish from individuals. A few years ago there was a sting operation which nabbed a bunch of paylakes & people selling fish to them.
    Also I think if you own the paylake, you can put the fish you catch in them. At least it's my understanding from someone that's a common practice. Don't know about noodling, it's legal in KY where you hand grab them off the nest under banks of rivers/streams. Some might come from that.
    We know for sure that OH doesn't issue commercial licences for anywhere other than the Lake Erie region. Ky does, for KY and that includes the Ohio River.
  8. twistertail - Most paylakes are buying fish from netters who take the fish from the Ohio River and others. Ohio does not own the river, Kentucky does. If you have valid photo identification, $300, and a signature - you can receive a license issued from the state of Kentucky. The netters get about $1/pound for the catfish.

    flathunter - It is very discouraging, but please continue to educate and always fight the good fight. :)
  9. Good info guys, thanks. I have never fished a pay lake, cant see spending money to fish one when there are so many good public places to fish. Also I like being away from the crowds when i'm fishing.

    So what happened to the people they got for selling and buying fish? If its anything like any other time someone breaks the law they are probably back doing again.

    I remember seeing where people down south go out and set box traps and would get hundreds of cats in one box! It was a show on tv these people were selling the fish, not to pay lakes but to stores. They would catch them clean them and then sell them. Is the catfish population that much bigger down south that taking cats like that all time doesnt hurt them?
  10. Funny story from a few years back that relates:

    A buddy and I were putting in at East Fork one morning at a round 7 am. While we were putting in a couple of real redneck looking guys were pulling out their old, beat up boat. In the middle of their boat was a large plywood box with a few tubes and wires etc. I asked him if that was his bait tank and he said "Nope, its my live well". I asked if he did well and he smiled and opened the box to reveal a very nice flathead that was virtually stuffed into the box...probably 40+ pounds. I aksed what he was keeping it for and he proceeded to tell me about how he pays for gas etc. by selling those fish to paylakes.

    Well as I pulled the truck back to the parking area a game warden was pulling in. I talked to him for a second and he checked my license etc. I mentioned the guys with the catfish and he suddenly got very interested. Turns out the good 'ole boys hadn't made enough money that year to buy a fishing license or a license plate for their trailer or a registration for the boat.

    It turned out to be a very, very bad day for old Cletus and Vern :D
  11. Good story Onion, wish they could get everyone who breaks the law. People like that make me look bad. I run trotlines every once in a while, once a year or every few years, but I dont keep everything just a few for a fish fry. I have a good time getting bait and floating down the creek and seeing what i pull out of some of the holes. But when I talk about it all people can think about is people like ol Cletus there and gives me a bad rep. as a trotliner.
  12. catking

    catking Banned

    It's funny how these lakes have evolved over the years. When I was young the fish that were mainly stocked were carp, channel cats and bullhead cats (in the spring) Then somebody got the idea about the big cats in the late 70's or so? Makes you wonder how it has gotten so far out of hand. THE CATKING :(
  13. Chuck P.

    Chuck P. Here We Go Steelers

    It's easy to see why or how paylakes have boomed over the last few years. Here are just a few of the reasons:

    #1. They are close to home for most, no need to drive for an hour or more to fish, plus they have the chance to catch a very large catfish and/or win $$$ catching tagged fish or win $$$ during tournaments.

    #2. No license is required, that alone saves $19 a year. (could be a big deal to some people)

    #3. No boat to buy, insurance, maintenance, plates, etc.

    #4. Build a fire, Drink all night, without worry of the game warden or police.

    #5. Most are easily accessible by handicapped and/or older persons.

    These are just a few of the reasons for the boom. I'm sure there are plenty more.

    I just wish all the stocked fish in these paylakes were hatchery fish instead of wild river runners. :(
  14. katfish

    katfish Cats are where it's at!

    I will quote an exerpt or two from Tennessee Sportsman Magazine that may shed some light on the origins of some pay lakes fish.

    In another article I read that many commercial fishermen denied targetting large catfish on the Cumberland river. The day the new trophy regulations went into effect, most commercial fishermen pulled their nets and resumed operations in the Kentucky portions of the Cumberland river ;)
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 30, 2015
  15. traphunter

    traphunter Guest

    I cant hardly stand when people brag about catching big fish frm a paylake. A five pound fish from a regular bodie of water is more of a challenge to catch then a 50 pound fish from a paylake. :eek: Just my opinion. ;)
  16. Fishman

    Fishman Catch bait???

    Thats a funny story Onion. I don't like paylakes at all, but I'm not gonna get on this soap box :)

    I will say this though, paylakes that buy fish from fish hatcherys are okay by me. If you want to eat a few channels or take the kids fishing and almost insure they catch something its a good deal.
  17. Paylakes should ONLY be allowed to purchase fish from a hatchery.

    Paylakes have there place - they are great for disabled/handicapped individuals, as well as youth/elderly.

    But the SW OH Paylakes, in my opinion are nothing more than a waste of our natural resources for those who like to Gamble. Who's going to win the $500 tonight :confused: I forgot, it's Memorial Day weekend - it's $2,500 this time!

    It reminds me of the old county fairs - they used to fence off a football field sized section of ground; then use paint to section off 500 square foot lots and # them. You could buy a lot for $5 each. When all the lots were sold, a horse was released in the fenced area. Whomever "owned" the section the horse did his business in won the $$$$.

    I say if you like to gamble - fish some public water and take a chance that you may have to do some work to catch fish :mad: