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Scioto Smallmouth

Discussion in 'Central Ohio Fishing Reports' started by topwaterdevil, Jul 21, 2007.

  1. topwaterdevil

    topwaterdevil SMB and Saugeyes.

    Nice morning on the Scioto again today. Nothing huge, didn't get a new personal best like last week, but in an hour and a half I caught 5 11-12 inchers along with the usual smaller ones.

    Something I've been thinking about recently is the size/creel limits for smallmouth. I know several rivers in Ohio (Darby, Stillwater, Sandusky, Hocking) have the 15 inch, limit 1 regulation in place. Do those of you who fish these areas think it's been effective in protecting the smallmouth population? Should the ODNR consider extending this to more Ohio rivers?

    I know that those of you on this site respect our rivers as a valuable resource and there seems to be a catch and release consensus when sensitive fish populations are involved.

    However, the reason I bring this up is that the Scioto, like many rivers, gets a lot of pressure from those who don't recognize the value of a healthy fish population. It doesn't take too long for these anglers to destroy a productive fishing hole. They are the same type who litter our waterways with bait containers, empty cans/bottles, and fast food bags. Consider the reaction in the other Darby Wading thread when someone publicly posted directions to a local hot spot.

    Part of me says that this has been going on forever and that the pressure today can't be too much more than the pressure in the 80's and 90's. The fish are still here now, right? Is the population sensitive enough to be affected by this pressure? Thoughts?
  2. I think there should be a size and bag limit on the river for smallies and most other fish, I have seen way to many 8"-10 smallies and saugeye on a stringer, it could only help the fishing in the area, me and a buddy talked to a couple game wardens about a year or so back about a size and bag limit and they seemed less than interested in the thought to say the least, if its good for the Darby why not the Scioto.

  3. StuckAtHome

    StuckAtHome Mad SOT YAKER!

    Did you happen to see two guys in kayaks at the scioto this morning? Swookie and I fished it too, just wondering.
  4. topwaterdevil

    topwaterdevil SMB and Saugeyes.

    I started off further south than usual and saw a couple guys launch, maybe 6:15? If that was you then was north of you. Where I fished most of the morning would have been a little shallow to get the yaks through.

    Smallmouth_Crazy, I'm with you on the bag and creel limits. Unless they're overpopulated and some of the smaller ones need to be removed, we might as well afford them some protection and let them grow up.
  5. crittergitter

    crittergitter Multi Species Angler

    You kind of have to ask yourself an important question in a lot of these instances:

    Are more regulations the answer or is enforcement of existing regulations the answer?

    I only propose this because in 20 years of fishing rivers, I have never seen a game warden. I see them at resevoirs, lake erie and of course the walleye run, but outside of the walleye run I have never seen a warden while fishing a river.

  6. topwaterdevil

    topwaterdevil SMB and Saugeyes.

    If people are disinclined to follow them, regulations are only as good as their enforcement.
  7. i say a one smallie over 22in a day in all of ohios public streams and rivers, and actually put some people on the rivers enforcing the laws. we'd start catchin big smallies everywhere. they also need to make it illegal to use smallies as bait:mad:
  8. The game wardens that I talked to a year or so ago were on the river..but yes they need to be more visible, Im not one that wants to be beat over the head with new regs every year...but I sure wouldnt mind them putting one on the books saying if you want to keep a smallie have it be 14-15" and a limit of 1 or 2 per day, or if you want to keep a eye have it be 14".
  9. I'm all for size limits, slot limits, creel limits and even making species off-limits to keep during their spawning times, especially when it comes to SM. If I'm going to keep fish to eat (and in Ohio waters that's a rarity), I keep the ones that taste good, like Gill and Crappie. I was fortunate one time in Canada to taste SM, Walleye, and Lake Trout at one sitting. All 4 fish I've mentioned were far better than SM. Even Cats are better.

    I have to be honest here and tell you that SM, by far, are my favorite fish to catch. I love Steelies and Carp on the fly rod, but give me a SM anyday.