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No reproduction of any kind.
Early look at state forecast
shows LyCygne, Bill Hill, Wilson and Coffey County among top
By Deb Zeiner
The email from the Kansas Department of Wildlife
and Parks arrived on The Kansas Angler computer the afternoon
of Feb. 4.
To: "Kansas Anger". Subject: RE: Fishing
forecast for 2005
For many anglers in Kansas, the arrival of the
yearly summarization of fishing potential from the KDWP is a
sure sign that spring is just around
Each year fisheries management biologists in the
state monitor the lakes and reservoirs in their jurisdiction
through such means as test-netting and electroshocking. The information
they collect is separated into two categories - reservoirs of
larger than 1,000 acres and lakes, bodies of
water with fewer than 1,000 acres.
The data for the popular sport fish species is
separated into tables that describe a density rating, preferred
rating, lunker rating and biggest fish for each body of water
and along with that data a biologist's rating and size of the
impoundment is included on a chart that is published for consideration
by the public.
It is a considerable undertaking not only for the
biologists but also for
the angler who struggles to understand the compilations.
The density rating is the number of fish that were
of quality size or larger during each unit of sampling effort.
The higher the density rating for a body of water, the more quality
sized or larger fish were noted per surface acre.
The preferred rating identifies how many above-average
sized fish are in a body of water. Inotherwords, this rating
might give an angler some
indication of where to go fishing to catch a bigger representation
The lunker rating is similar to the density rating,
but indicates the
relative density of lunker-sized fish in the body of water. Biologists
recommend combining the density rating with the lunker rating
to get an idea of where you might want to fish.
The biggest fish column indicates the weight of
the largest fish caught during sampling.
But perhaps the most important rating is the biologist's
district fisheries biologist reviews the data from the annual
sampling of lakes in their district and assigns ratings based
on their knowledge to those lakes. A P rating indicates a poor
rating by the biologist; F is fair,
G is good and E is excellent.
This year's ratings might surprise some anglers.
For example, while many state reservoirs were rated good by biologists,
including Clinton, Sebelius, Cheney, Wilson, Milford and Glen
Elder, only Kirwin received an excellent rating and yielded a
15.43 pound specimen during testing. And LaCygne yielded an 8.41
largemouth during testing. It was one of only two reservoirs
in the state that was rated excellent, along with Big Hill. But
Cedar Bluff, Webster and Perry all yielded largemouth over 6
pounds during testing.
Wilson Reservoir rated highest for striped bass,
with a density rating of 4.75 and a biologist's rating of good.
The largest striper recorded during testing was 13.32 pounds.
And Coffey County Lake received the only
biologist's rating of excellent for walleye.
White bass remain plentiful. Kanopolis, Glen Elder,
Cedar Bluff, Lovewell, Big Hill, Kirwin and Cheney reservoirs
all received excellent biologist's ratings, with Kanopolis having
the highest density rating of 89.50 and John Redmond the lowest
KDWP best describes the best use of the information
compiled in the forecast.
"The following tables are designed to help
improve your fishing success," said information on the KDWP
web site. "Your ability to catch depends on many factors
such as water temperature, water clarify, weather, angling skills,
fishing pressure and density of the fish in the lake."
Editor's note - At press time, the forecast had
not been made available on a wide-scale basis yet or posted on
the state's website. It is still in the final stages of preparation.
Watch KansasAnglerOnline at www.kansasangler.com for notice when
the total forecast will be available.
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