Thursday, September 16, 2010

Hot Fishing With Wide Action Plugs

Wide wobbling plugs can be a very productive lure choice to fish in September on the Big D. Hard hits can be triggered from lures that produce a very distinctive side-to-side wobble action. They are available in flaoting, suspending and sinking styles. Lures such as the hot-n-tot, chatter bait and quick fish are excellent choices when fish feeding patterns are in overdrive this month. Be sure to add Jerks & twitches during a horizontal retrieve and it will create even more erratic action. This will trigger more hard strikes from most predatory species of fish that lurk in the Big D.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Shawnee River Mussels Work Hard

A past survey of freshwater mussels living in the Upper Delaware River found that almost all the mussels in the river were of one particular species. Biologists know this special river workforce as “Elliptio Complanata”. They are the most common mussels species found in our northeast waters. Scientists also tell us, mussels can live for more than a century.

Many big Rivers in the eastern United States (like the Lehigh & Susquehanna) have seen big declines from their once strong and vibrant populations of these mussels. Scientists suspect that the water–filtering-capabilities of good mussel populations do greatly affect the water quality of a river. Recent studies by the U.S. Geologic Survey suggests that dams negatively affect the reproduction of these freshwater mussels and when hydroelectric dams were built, they broke a complex ecological connection that no one could imagined until more recently.

It possibly goes something like this:
Mussel reproduction requires that their larvae attach themselves as a parasite to a host species before they transform into small mussels. The mussels rely on one or just a few specific species for that life stage. The mussels broadcast larvae into the water using a spider web-like mucous that other migratory species (possibly eels, shad, saltwater stripers) swim through, picking up larvae. So when the host species is removed from the river (by dams for an example), mussel populations plummet.

The great news is that Scientist do believe that the Upper Delaware River has about 2 million mussels per mile, and that they have the capability to filter more than six times the daily river flow (normal-seasonal flows). This translates to an enormous ability to remove sediments from the river and keep the exploding micro-zoo plankton and larvae populations in check. Excellent workers like these E.C. Mussel Guys are sure hard to come by these days!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Catch the Delaware Water Gap Fishing

There are many species of sport fish that anglers target within the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation through out the year.
American Shad – run generally from mid April thru early June (sizes 2-8 lbs)
Striped Bass – run generally from late April thru mid June (sizes 2-40 lbs)
Trout - Best time; Late March thru early June (1-9lbs)
Hybrid Striped Bass - best time; late April thru November (sizes 1-12 lbs)
Smallmouth Bass – best time; June thru November (sizes 1-4 lbs)
Large mouth bass - best time; June thru August (1-8lbs)
Walleye – best time; October thru March (sizes 1-12 lbs)
Channel Catfish – best time; all year round (sizes 2-20 lbs)
Musky – best time; March (sizes 10-40 lbs)
Yellow Perch – best time; November thru March (sizes 1-2 lbs)
Rock Bass – best time; June thru early September (1/2 lbs)
Fallfish – best time; all year round (1-2 lbs)
Carp – best time; mid April thru late June (1-30 lbs)

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Summer of Bronzebacks

Small mouth bass do reign supreme during the summer months in the Pocono Regions of the Delaware River. Although many other species inhabit our local sections of the Big D, When nothing else seems to be feeding, the small mouth bass will make his presence known to the skillful bass angler who can exicute his artificial presention skillfully.

In order to keep this great sport-fishing opportunity at its past and present strong levels, anglers should practice “Catch and Release”. This starts by fishing with artificial lures and baits that require more direct contact than drifting live baits.

There are many standards that should be followed by all anglers if they want to release fish “unharmed” that greatly lower the mortality rate of fish that are released. This starts even before actually catching the fish. It is important to land (play out) your bass quickly.

You want to always make sure that you wet your hand(s) first. It is important to minimize any direct contact with their skin and delicate slime layer. Hand-to-fish (touching fish), boat-to-fish/ground-to-fish contact (caused by dropping fish or dragging fish out of the water) will have detrimental consequences and increase the mortality rate of any released fish. Too much handling (especially with small mouth bass) will cause skin infection due to the removal of their protective slime layer.

Firmly grab their lower toothless jaw. Make sure to grasp them firm enough so they won’t be dropped. This holding technique will immobilize bass and help to minimize the removal of the protective slime layer. It will also put you in a good position for dislodging the hook. Never grip the eyes, inside or outside the gill plates or squeeze the belly of any fish. "Catch and release" is fishing for the future of the Delaware River

Monday, June 7, 2010

River Spirits

The Delaware River has been a focal point for the activities of mankind for millennia. Artifacts dating back to the paleo period 10,000 ago have been found scattered along the river banks from its headwaters in upstate New York all the way to the Delaware Bay in Southern New Jersey. Native Americans used the river for transportation and for food gathering. Among these food gathering activities was fishing. Today, modern Americans navigate this majestic river in boats, canoes and kayaks enjoying its beauty, fresh air, abundant wildlife and fabulous fishing.

Shawnee River Trips is dedicated to the spirit of these early inhabitants who lived on the (and from the) Delaware River. They wisely understood the ebb and flow of the waters from which their survival depended. It is in this spirit that we will offer our guided fishing, unguided kayak, canone and raft livery services.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Life Styles Of The American Shad

Just consider the life of a shad for just a moment. They must first make it to birth in the vast expanse of a river. The prospect of high-water events (as we prefer to call them around these parts because, we do not like the word “flooding”!) will create silt & erosion issues that will disrupt the entire river system during many crucial periods of a shads short life, starting at lowering the odds of every shad egg from even ever making it to birth.e.

Shad must overcome and endure incredible obstacles far beyond just ragging waters within their brief 3-4 year natural life cycle. They must survive as juveniles swimming down stream, through the brackish waters (fresh/salt water mixture under tidal influenced), out into the vast Atlantic ocean to then travel the eastern Atlantic sea board for a few years. They then will need to turn around and start the whole track over again by heading right back up the same river system again to spawn and eventally die, to successfully complete their natural life cycle.

These shad will have to survive twice the gauntlet through the masses of hungry predatory fish, birds, anglers and commercial stroller nets. And you think that you have it bad! Think again my angling friends!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Restoration Efforts On American Shad Run