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Poll

Which of the 4 proposed bass season options can you support the most?

No change - bass seasons stay the same with a closed season.
CIR Jan 1 until existing regular bass season openers.
CIR Jan 1 until regular Memorial weekend opener - Lake St. Clair moves to Memorial weekend too.
CIR Jan 1 until last Saturday in April. L.P. regular opener is moved to last Sat in April, U.P. reg opener moved to May 15.

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Author Topic: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options  (Read 8921 times)

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djkimmel

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4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« on: July 19, 2014, 12:36:46 AM »

Here's our unscientific but informational poll of the 4 options the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) is seeking input from the public right now through public meetings, a small, random mailed survey and the online survey anyone from anywhere who is interested can take.

The 4 available options are worded this way from the MDNR online survey:
  • Catch-and-immediate-release fishing from the last Saturday in April (Lower Peninsula) or May 15 (Upper Peninsula) to the Friday before Memorial Day. Harvest season from the Saturday before Memorial Day to December 31. Harvest season for Lake St. Clair and the St. Clair and Detroit rivers from the third Saturday in June to December 31 (current regulations). (NO CHANGE)
  • Maintain current harvest seasons for Lower Peninsula, Upper Peninsula, Lake St. Clair and the St. Clair and Detroit rivers, but allow catch-and-immediate-release fishing for bass at all other times of the year. (ADD Catch-and-Immediate-Release (CIR) REST OF YEAR ONLY, Lake St. Clair (LSC) STAYS THE SAME)
  • Maintain current harvest seasons for Lower Peninsula and Upper Peninsula, but change the harvest opening date for Lake St. Clair and the St. Clair and Detroit rivers to the Saturday before Memorial Day. Allow catch-and-immediate-release fishing for bass at all other times of the year. (ORIGINAL MICHIGAN B.A.S.S.S NATION PROPOSAL, ADD CIR REST OF YEAR, MOVE LSC REGULAR OPENER TO MEMORIAL WEEKEND WITH REST OF STATE)
  • Change the harvest opening dates to match the respective opening dates for walleye, northern pike, and muskellunge in the Lower Peninsula (last Saturday in April) and Upper Peninsula (May 15). Bass seasons would still close December 31. Allow catch-and-immediate-release fishing for bass at all other times of the year. (NEW OPTION - WOULD ALLOW ALL BASS ANGLERS MORE OPPORTUNITY FOR EQUAL CHOICE TO FISH THE WAY THEY PREFER INCLUDING TOURNAMENTS)

To the best of my knowledge, both Michigan bass federations now support the new last option that provides the most additional and equal bass fishing opportunity for all bass anglers regardless of their particular preferred method of bass fishing. This option came from the MDNR in an amended form using Adaptive Management thinking of learning by doing. The various and varied fishing and outdoor groups on the MDNR Warmwater Resources Steering Committee came up with the specific dates in the option so that they would be simpler and make more sense aligning with the inland pike, walleye and muskellunge openers.

The 3rd listed option is the original Michigan B.A.S.S. Nation option that both federations support as their least opportunity option they are willing to support if the new 4th option can't get enough public support.
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djkimmel

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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2014, 12:44:19 PM »

Lets get some more votes on here. It helps to see where we're at now. And if you're someone who thinks your vote will be made public or known - even I can't tell who voted what. It shouldn't matter anyway but I thought I'd mention that in case someone is holding back on voting for that reason - thanks!
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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2014, 12:54:14 PM »

I'm guessing those who choose option #2 are not tournament anglers.  Guess I don't see the reason behind not wanting more opportunity for tournaments in Michigan... it can only help economically (ramp improvements, better fish management, etc...) and it's been proven in every other state around us to not hurt the population.  But everyone has the option to choose.  Personally I'm all for option #4.
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djkimmel

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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2014, 03:40:19 PM »

-Some people do make their mind up only on what they personally want or care about. They may be choosing option 2 for that reason.

I know 3 or 4 of the Downriver Bass guys showed up at the Detroit meeting, and some of them have consistently felt that since they hold their tournaments as catch and immediate release, everyone else can and should too. There are some people in the MDNR who think we can and should do that more often. Gerry Gostenik brought up how 'Major League Fishing does their weigh ins' (of course, he didn't mention all the things they need to go through and limitations placed on the event doing it that way...  ::)). I haven't put a lot of effort into trying to explain to them that THEY are the outliers in that way of doing things not everyone else, the great majority of tournament anglers like to weigh bass in with their peers and even with a crowd of spectators. And no one showed or brought up any science to support ANY need to force the great majority of bass tournament anglers to do things the way these minority of persons think they should... not one shred. While we have actual fisheries studies to demonstrate that we can do it more. We even had multiple statements from MDNR leadership saying so!

TimH did a great job of pointing out at that meeting the benefits of having fish weigh ins - people like to see the fish, some people watch the weigh ins and say things like: 'I'm going to try bass fishing, this looks like fun!' and similar statements - I've heard those kinds of statements for years - one of the main tenets of B.A.S.S. and the bass federations - promote bass fishing and get more people fishing for bass. TimH also pointed out that if there is no strong, sound science showing anglers who want to bring bass into a weigh in are hurting the bass populations then why not let them fish the way they want to? He also pointed out that many bass tournament anglers have VOLUNTARILY agreed to reduce their own limits from 10 bass per team to 5 as a way to keep populations healthy. TimH also pointed out that it makes more sense in the regulations to open major game fish at the same time!

This whole process isn't about telling other people 'you have to fish the way I want you to' or I have to fish the way you think I should - this is about wise use of our resource, and getting the maximum bass fishing opportunity of ANY kind that our populations can sustain based on sound science not personal minority opinions, and things like social bias and prejudice.

-Some only seem to care about Lake St. Clair for various reasons - some selfish (a guide or two - talk about bias), and some thinking they are protecting the lake because it has 'more' fishing pressure. That may be why they are picking option 2. I do not appreciate and cannot support anyone who wants to try to control the number of anglers who want to fish for bass on ANY lake, but I can recognize that some people truly believe they are only caring about the resource first. All I can do is keep saying so am I - I'm looking at the big picture and what the future of fishing needs to continue, and I would NEVER do anything to hurt bass populations. I actually take great offense whenever someone accuses me, or the bass federations, of only thinking about money. I don't always confront that kind of BS but sometimes I do. I can't help that most of that kind of slap in the face comes from either great selfishness, or a fair amount of naivety of how fisheries management is funded and the entire big picture of fishing including the real enemies of our future - a failure to retain existing anglers, failure to recruit new anglers and wasting time fighting each other while well-funded radicals are attacking us from multiple directions in a long-term and thought effort to take our entire ability to hunt and fish away from us!

-Some people maybe don't understand all the options in detail, or maybe they have never thought of the big picture of fishing needing fishermen as much as it needs fish (as I touch on above)? That may be why they are picking option 2.

I know very few bass anglers who have actually read fisheries studies or even talked to a fish biologist who is knowledgeable in bass management and bass research. All it takes to do so is time, dedication and caring enough.

I've taken my own time over 30+ years to do so simply because I do love bass fishing, and I do want to make sure the sport stays alive and well. I don't say people who don't read entire studies and talk to the biologists who've done them don't care about bass fishing, but I do say that I easily feel more comfortable in being right than taking any word of someone who has not done so yet tries to tell me how wrong I or we, behind the effort to finally get true scientific management and wise use of our Michigan bass, are. After all, I'm not making stuff up or just trying to get year-round open bass fishing because I want it - I'm going by the experience of 45 states with year-round bass fishing (including many other Northern states), the knowledge of recognized fisheries biologists who have spent entire careers managing and studying bass populations (and those are the persons who know about ALL the other studies anyone else has done on bass) and the desire to protect our sport long term by doing everything possible to retain existing anglers, recruit new anglers and stop the radical animal rights people from taking our sport away from us.

Allowing more fishing opportunity that the restriction of isn't supported by sound science and long term experience is a major, major part of accomplishing all that. Way, way, way after these more important things comes any individual concerns about 'more people fishing MY lake' or 'too many people fishing MY lake' or people (enjoying) having bass tournaments when I don't want them to... That kind of thinking is one of the real enemies of fishing's future frankly. I can't put it any plainer than that.

We already have plenty of ways to control the number of bass killed, the number of bass harvested (or any other fish for that matter), the number of anglers/boaters who can get on to any lake at a time, how many bass tournaments can be held on lakes and rivers, all the things a few persons claim as the reasons they want to continue to unnecessarily restrict your and my bass fishing opportunity of choice based on opinion, social issues (some questionable at best), bias, selfishness and prejudice (in a FREE Country no less!!!!). Unique local issues are just that - unique local issues, and they can and should be addressed, when necessary, locally after fairly good actual proof and facts that some action is actually needed. We can't continue to manage our fisheries at the state level by using the worst waters as the measuring bar.
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Help stop invasive spcies. Don't move fish between unconnected bodies of water. Clean, drain and dry your boat before launching on another water body.
Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of Michigan BASS Nation or TBF of Michigan.

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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2014, 04:25:33 PM »

I thought about another thing Monday night driving home from a Case of the Monday's tournament.  All the meetings are on weeknights.  If I had to guess, I'd say that of the (and I'll use round numbers to keep it easy) 100,000 tournament anglers in Michigan... more than half are fishing weeknight tournaments on the nights these meetings are taking place (I would be one of those 50,000 who fishes weekly clubs while the meetings are taking place).  In my case my partner and I are in line for AOY in two of those clubs and to skip a night to go to a meeting would mean losing out on a chance for some decent money at the end of the season.  Getting them to have these meetings on a Sunday afternoon is probably impossible... but how about in the fall after most clubs are done fishing every week?  Would it be possible to add a couple more meetings to the schedule?
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djkimmel

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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2014, 02:23:41 PM »

Not this time around, we need to have this all wrapped up through the whole NRC process by October to have something in place for 2015.

I will talk to the MDNR about the meeting results this week, and I can always mention feedback. It may be helpful depending on how all the meetings went and how everyone feels about them.

I think meetings on any day or time in the summer months will be tough to get people to come to though people need to MAKE the time to be heard if they care about something enough. I know if this process had been about possibly closing bass season until July 1st like last time we probably would have had much bigger turnouts! ;D
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Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of Michigan BASS Nation or TBF of Michigan.

Kal-Kevin

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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2014, 07:04:39 AM »

I agree Dan turn out would be better if there was a problem like closing the season down more. Like the DNR officer at the Kalamazoo meeting said they only show up if there is something wrong, so they must be happy!
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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2014, 09:30:00 AM »

I know GR area turnout would be better if all the meetings weren't scheduled last minute, 1+hrs away... on weeknights....  ???  The closest option for me was caddillac. Thats 85 miles away.

i don't think weekends would be any better. its summer. people are just not around on the weekends. Fishing, vacations, home projects and so on.

Ironic - low turnout of tournament anglers because we have to fish as much as possible in a short window of time we are currently allowed to have tournaments.
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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #8 on: July 29, 2014, 11:47:36 AM »

The DNR has sound evidence and the means to conduct this simple experiment:

1.  Over the course of next spawning season, pluck a few hundred fish off their beds from various lakes, smallies and largies, and tag them

2. Take them to the boat ramp and release them

3. go back to those bed areas 2 days later, 4 days later, 8 days later, and C & R a bunch of fish off beds.

4. Measure the number that returned, distance traveled, and time it took.

Repeat for 3 years to gather data on bass instincts. They will find bass, especially smallies, will travel up to 1 - 2 miles per day, and be back on their beds, or find an empty nest and guard that nest. Its quite amazing, but data would speak more than lore.

They have the tags, and data gathering, now they would just need funding for the study.
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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2014, 05:27:13 PM »

The DNR has sound evidence and the means to conduct this simple experiment:

1.  Over the course of next spawning season, pluck a few hundred fish off their beds from various lakes, smallies and largies, and tag them

2. Take them to the boat ramp and release them

3. go back to those bed areas 2 days later, 4 days later, 8 days later, and C & R a bunch of fish off beds.

4. Measure the number that returned, distance traveled, and time it took.

Repeat for 3 years to gather data on bass instincts. They will find bass, especially smallies, will travel up to 1 - 2 miles per day, and be back on their beds, or find an empty nest and guard that nest. Its quite amazing, but data would speak more than lore.

They have the tags, and data gathering, now they would just need funding for the study.

This is what exactly needs to be done and this is exactly what Texas Fish and Game did.  There were some slight variations but this will give you conclusive data which is what you need when conducting a study that is credible.  Nice job Mojo.  You've been doing your homework assignments.   8)



BD                           ;D
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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #10 on: July 29, 2014, 07:09:40 PM »

Great concept but by the time the DNR collects the data and processes it then comes to a conclusion  and decision on a season we will all be in retirement homes..   

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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2014, 11:31:29 PM »

The DNR has sound evidence and the means to conduct this simple experiment:

1.  Over the course of next spawning season, pluck a few hundred fish off their beds from various lakes, smallies and largies, and tag them

2. Take them to the boat ramp and release them

3. go back to those bed areas 2 days later, 4 days later, 8 days later, and C & R a bunch of fish off beds.

4. Measure the number that returned, distance traveled, and time it took.

Repeat for 3 years to gather data on bass instincts. They will find bass, especially smallies, will travel up to 1 - 2 miles per day, and be back on their beds, or find an empty nest and guard that nest. Its quite amazing, but data would speak more than lore.

They have the tags, and data gathering, now they would just need funding for the study.

There is no need for anymore studies on the subject. They've been done. The MDNR Fisheries Division has already said they aren't going to do further study on this issue related to year-round bass fishing and/or 'more' bass fishing during the spawn. We've already been able to legally keep bass during the ENTIRE U.P. bass spawn since 1970, and almost all of the Northern Michigan bass spawn since 1970, and varying amounts of all of the Michigan bass spawn has been legal to catch-and-keep (for the small percentage of bass anglers who do that) since 1970 or pretty much ALL of the Michigan bass spawn has been legally fished on the 6 test lakes for 25 years and STATEWIDE since 2006.

All we need is more people making time to be involved in several parts of the process, a little less fear of change, and a little less of people thinking they always need to tell everyone else to think and do the same way they do...

It is possible the MDNR may work with other Great Lakes states to do a smallmouth bass spawn fishing study in the future to look at some of the varying lakes and the effect of various fishing methods. It never hurts to find out more about bass (or any fish) but I think 43 years of the above bass 'spawnfishing' experience just in Michigan with absolutely zero correlation to MDNR bass regulations since 1970 and the success or failure of bass populations (other than the 14 inch limit may have been good for bass though other factors make it hard to show or prove - but I'm fine with it even if some old guy at a public meeting calls me a special interest who killed his chance to eat 10 inch bass) is more than enough for anyone who isn't selfish, doesn't want the whole world to think exactly like him or her, wants what is best for the future of bass fishing and fishing, who uses common sense to realize we can fish for bass year-round in Michigan just like 45 other states.
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djkimmel

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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2014, 11:39:11 PM »

Great concept but by the time the DNR collects the data and processes it then comes to a conclusion  and decision on a season we will all be in retirement homes..   


Exactly! When the thousandth person told me earlier this year at a meeting that I need 'more patience' to 'give it a little more time' I replied directly and immediately that I have already waited over 30 years... and I don't know how many more I have on Earth. I'd like to see this before I die...'

In my experience people who say we need more study at the meetings and such during these processes are just a) trying to stall change because they fear it; b) trying to stall for more time while they think of more reasons it can't happen (usually nothing to do with fact or science, or even what is best for EVERYONE); c) they just don't care that much and want to move on to the topic THEY care about!

I couldn't tell you how many public meetings and group meetings I've sat through over the decades listening to some people say why we always need - more time; more patience; you have to trust that THEY now best (not you); you have to understand how these things work (not); etc. etc. etc. Meanwhile, some people actually do want to get things done. Seems like more people lately - thank goodness! It was starting to get tedious the last 10 or 12 years... ;D

Plus... I'd like to go fishing.
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Re: 4 Proposed Michigan Bass Season Options
« Reply #13 on: July 31, 2014, 05:55:22 PM »

There's a local angler around here who suffers from this is SPADES (I'll quote Dan from above):


" thinking they always need to tell everyone else what to think and do it the same way they do..."

Boy does that grind me the wrong way!!!!  It's usually the ones who didn't bother to read any of the studies or go to any meetings or talk to anybody really "in the know" about these things that feel this way.

News Flash!!!  No one is ALWAYS right . . . even if you think you are.  I hate being told what I'm supposed to think.  My favorite is "well, no one cares what you think/do/post/say/believe.  Someone always cares.  Period.  So, voice your opinions, share you thoughts, and for heavens sake let the DNR know what you want by taking the survey!!!

OK, down off my soap box.  :-)
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