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Author Topic: Big Orchard Lake Musky.  (Read 808 times)

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dartag

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Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« on: July 20, 2017, 08:06:45 PM »

Fished Orchard Lake today in our Thursday Morning Tournament.  One of the guys caught a 46 inch musky under a pontoon.  He had some great photos of it before they released it. He fishes St Clair a lot so he knew what it was.    I remember talking with DK about the restocking program the DNR has.  I think I read they put 150 in there.   
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detroit1

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Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2017, 04:27:55 PM »

Well, I might run into one out there one of these days..i spend a lot of sundays out there. What was big fish and top weight?
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dartag

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Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2017, 04:30:46 PM »

11 pounds won and I thing big fish was 3.01. 
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djkimmel

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Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2017, 12:51:55 AM »

The MDNR planned on putting around 100 or so adult Northern (I think?) muskies in Orchard Lake to have it as a backup brood stock lake. Maybe they were wanting to put 150 or 160 in there total...? Can't remember now without going back to see if I put it in my notes.

I think earlier this year they had said they had captured and transferred 66 adult muskies into Orchard so far. They were going to keep working at it.

I believe they were getting the muskies from Lake Hudson, which is a mud pit with the visibility in inches. Can't imagine the shock for a muskie going from that water to Orchard...?!?
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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.

UAWBigDog

Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #4 on: July 27, 2017, 06:53:37 PM »

At one of my Bass Club meetings in the early spring, we had a guest speaker from the DNR. He indicated that Orchard Lake was going to be a "nursery" lake for Musky and that Lake Hudson which was the nursery lake for musky will no longer be that. I don't remember the numbers they were going to get from Lake Hudson to replant in Orchard but it was a significant amount, I thought. He explained that they will be hoping that the musky will spawn there after they are planted there from Hudson.


BD.             ;D
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djkimmel

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Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2017, 03:52:52 PM »

Similar to what we've been told but not quite the same. The MDNR has taken adult Northern musky from Lake Hudson and put some into both Orchard Lake and Lower Crooked Lake (Barry County) to have them as backup brood stock lakes. I don't recall them saying they were discontinuing at Lake Hudson. I probably don't have this spelled out in complete detail in my notes so I can't guarantee going just by memory that I remember everything exactly right.

I do know I saw a number of big, fat muskies lurking in the shallows this spring at Lower Crooked but in past attempts to stock them there it seems many went through the tube into Upper Crooked Lake and the MDNR didn't seem to be aware of this. Having had on as many as 8 muskies in one fishing day at UPPER Crooked I can assure them there are adult and young muskies in that lake too.
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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.

robhj

Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2017, 08:27:37 PM »

The DNR took adult northern strain muskies from Thornapple (67) and Hudson (around 30 I believe) and transplanted them into Lower Crooked and Orchard. This was done to focus on Thornapple as a broodstock for Great Lakes Spotted muskies which are native to Michigan and will help with their restoration/stocking in the years to come. Lower Crooked and Orchard are not going to be broodstock lakes, just somewhere to put those fish to give a different fishing opportunity to those areas. Out of the roughly 11,000 lakes here in Michigan, only around 120 or so have muskies. The goal will be to restore and protect the waters that currently have muskies, not to expand muskies to lakes where they are not currently located. Some of the muskies that were planted into Lower Crooked were 20+ years olds. It is highly unlikely that Orchard or Crooked will ever have self sustaining populations of muskies just like many of the lakes that have had them for many years. All of the lakes that have self sustaining Muskie populations are the ones with Great Lakes Spotted muskies which are native, and several of the lakes in the western UP and Tahq river that have self sustaining northern muskie strains. There has been no evidence of self sustaining muskies of the northern strain in the lower peninsula waters that have been stocked in past years. Those lakes were all dependent on stocking. The latest efforts of the DNR have been with focusing on the Great Lakes Spotted strain and reintroducing them into lakes and rivers where they have been native, but very rare, in hopes of reestablishing those lakes in hopes of creating a Muskie fishing opportunity. Many of those lakes began getting the GLS strain in 2013 (Macatawa, Mona, Muskegon, White, and the Grand River).
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djkimmel

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Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2017, 09:57:51 PM »

One of the muskie guys proposed catch-and-release year-round on all the lakes that are basically put-and-take lakes. I supported the idea too. The MDNR is proposing similar again though more expanded. I don't know how all the 'muskie' anglers are taking it. A few seem so-so on the idea. A few have flipped a gourd over it.

I will always believe that unless you close a water to ALL fishing most closed seasons make no sense when similar lures can be legally used for another gamefish in the same water. It sets up unnecessary intra-angler fighting and often unenforceable regulations that maybe a few judges allow but many other judges will throw out for the above and other reasons.

Plus, we need more anglers fishing more often, not unnecessary and weakly enforceable restrictions.
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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.

robhj

Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2017, 10:51:56 PM »

Personally I think year round catch and release on many of our stocked lakes would be fine. However, I also feel that many of the lakes with only natural reproduction need to be protected more with higher minimum size limits (50-54") and prime Muskie locations closed to Muskie fishing in the months of May & June. I think Michigan is moving in the right direction with 1 per year harvest, but with the recent plans around the Great Lakes Spotted Muskie program, more can be done to protect that resource. I'm all for more opportunities as anglers, but I also realize some additional protections are necessary and could be implemented and enforced. I would like to think that if the DNR closed a body of water off to Muskie fishing to protect spawning fish that most anglers would abide by the law, and if they didn't and chose to target muskies with "Muskie" tackle, then they could be ticketed. It would be up to the discretion of the DNR officer, and we as sportsman should abide by the laws. I really do believe these protections are necessary on some lakes/rivers. Once again, there are only about 120 lakes with muskies and roughly half of those have self sustaining populations so it really wouldn't be very restrictive. Just my personal opinion as a bass angler that also like to fish for muskies.
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djkimmel

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Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2017, 11:52:51 AM »

I can understand the feeling but then I think about Lake St. Clair where the anglers point fingers at each other for who is 'muskie fishing' verses who is 'pike fishing' because you can legally pike with all year with the same stuff muskies will also bite.

Right now, you can muskie fish all year on the Great Lakes, except the best fishery - Lake St. Clair, from the last time I looked at the fishing guide. I don't believe that has changed yet.

I sometimes throw some large lures for bass and don't want to have someone accuse me of 'muskie fishing' because of that when I'm on a lake that has both bass (most lakes) and muskie.
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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.

djkimmel

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Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2017, 11:59:37 AM »

Before he recently retired from the MDNR Fisheries Division, fish biologist Mike Thomas told me he believed NONE of our closed seasons where now scientifically warranted or needed. He said he supported catch and release for all species on most lakes instead of closed seasons.

This makes a lot more sense on any water that doesn't have a total fishing closure. Everyone I deal with on a regular basis involved in Michigan fisheries management readily admits that more and more these 'management' decisions are being made more because of what people think instead of the actual science.

I strongly believe this is bad for fishing and needs to stop. The whole reason the Natural Resources Commission was created way back in 1922 was to take the politics and what people think out of natural resources management. From many experiences with them, the present NRC Commissioners are not doing this. They are clearly making more of their decisions based on what people think instead of science.

Not good. We might as well put everything up for a citizen's vote if we keep heading down this road. The end result is the same - natural resources 'management' by what people think, and most people have no idea about the real science and the many reasons it is important to manage our natural resources by science.
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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.

robhj

Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2017, 05:45:40 PM »

I agree with you Dan on most of your points. I was able to attend many of the DNR meetings this past spring and I heard a lot of social/emotional arguments for or against different regulations. I wish management decisions could only be made based on the available science, but I think there will always be a social aspect to these decisions. I'm sure you've heard your fair share of opinions regarding the  salmon stocking issue at the meetings you attended or in the onlin forums. Unfortunately, social attitudes will probably always be part of management decisions. I wish it wasn't that way, especially when dealing with a species like Muskie, because you and I both know how emotional things can get when discussing that species. The statement I made regarding muskies was that their distribution is so minimal to begin with that having a closed season on certain waters would be easier to regulate than other species. I think Michigan is on the right track with higher minimum size limits and lower harvest to help protect the few Muskie lakes & rivers we currently have. I'm all for additional fishing opportunities and getting more people involved, but we also need to consider doing whatever we can to protect the resources we have, so those opportunities will be here for decades to come. The DNR has a tough job, but it would be great if they could only base decisions on the science-not an easy task as was witnessed at the meetings this past spring which had a lot of emotion at some of the ones I attended.
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21XDC

Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #12 on: August 04, 2017, 08:57:00 PM »

Large Musky eat really small baits too.  :)


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robhj

Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2017, 10:11:03 PM »

Nice muskie and yes they will hit lures of all sizes just like bass will hit giant muskie lures. I've caught some nice smallies on large top water lures fishing for muskies and I've caught some very average size largies on some double 10 bladed bucktails.  The current modern day world record Muskie was caught here in Michigan by some guys fishing for smallies using live bait. Albeit large sucker minnows.
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djkimmel

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Re: Big Orchard Lake Musky.
« Reply #14 on: August 06, 2017, 03:47:47 PM »

Like the variations of what was apparently said at the various MDNR meetings about muskie doings, I've heard a number of variations on the record muskie catch too including that it wasn't even caught in Lake Bellaire (by someone who usually knows what he's talking about??). If you could only trust a fisherman...

One thing to be clear about - the final 'management' decision isn't the MDNR - it's the 7 NRC Commissioners and even when the MDNR has told them something wasn't a scientific issue they've gone and made questionable moves anyways. Such as when the chumming issue on 3 rivers came up and instead the NRC made chumming illegal on ALL 'trout' streams instead despite the MDNR repeatedly telling them it wasn't a scientific / resource management issue.

I was at the last NRC meeting but did not stay for all the public comment because of scheduling but there must have been over a DOZEN people signed up to talk about the chumming ban one year later with more signing up at the meeting. I was told most of them were against the ban. I hope that went on a long time and the commissioners got a good earful. They deserve it. (They've earned it.)

That's what happens when you go outside of science to trying to make decisions based on what some people want. You choose sides and basically say, 'I like you and your opinions. I'm going to pick you. I don't care about all those other people and their opinions...'
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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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