bassturds

Herring

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Huh.  Now I'm curious to see what things look like on the Palmer river.

That run has been PALTRY for the last few years.     Though it can be hard to tel with the new ladder.  We used to see em stacked up against the dam but I never, ever saw the water filled with herring like that there.

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Just for clarification... when I’m offshore(stellwagen) and I catch herring what is the actual regulation. I’ve been told they aren’t Considered River herring. Ran into a bunch last weekend. Didn’t keep any but I have used them for bait in the past. 

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25 mins ago, mattyice902 said:

Just for clarification... when I’m offshore(stellwagen) and I catch herring what is the actual regulation. I’ve been told they aren’t Considered River herring. Ran into a bunch last weekend. Didn’t keep any but I have used them for bait in the past. 

Those are mostly sea herring but they do mix out there so it’s good to know the difference. The best way is to run your finger along the belly from tail forward. If your finger or glove “catches” it’s a river herring. Also river herring tend to be deeper bodied.

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Awesome to see such strong runs. Bodes well for the condition of the rivers and streams these guys go to, and will help the bass make a good comeback. 

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Should be done by end of May. Alewives a little earlier, bluebacks stick around longer. Dropbacks typically happen immediately after spawning and this goes on throughout the whole spawning phase (ie you'll see early spawners dropping back as later ones are still moving upstream)

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15 hours ago, MoreLunkers said:

Haven’t seen any herring in the Charles/Mystic since about a week ago.. any updates on the Charles specifically? 

I haven't been back to Watertown since I last posted about it. I did check Moody st and the Newton falls though a couples days ago and all were strangely void of herring. (Did catch some nice smallies though right before the anti-reverse on my reel crapped out on me)

 

Mystic is still bumping as always. Herring all throughout the river, stacked at the dam. I've found them in the Aberjona river, Mill Pond, and all the way up to the spillway at Horn.

 

Also saw signs of life in Alewife brook, although I've yet to see them in any of the ponds in the upper limits of that network yet, and I scout it almost daily. Soon, hopefully.

Edited by Intrepid95

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On 5/9/2020 at 2:07 PM, bassturds said:

When do the river herring stop spawning? When do they drop back?

When they discharge there eggs in most cases. Not all River Herring will drop back to head back out to sea. Some stay for the summer and wait until the following year to drop back The same is also true of the young that survive from the eggs that generally head back out to sea in the fall . It has been determined that they also will stick around until next year . Every one assumes that in the spring when the herring are heading up stream to a local habitat to spawn that some of the herring are the only ones in the run . That is not always true Peace and Prayers

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On 5/9/2020 at 2:07 PM, bassturds said:

When do the river herring stop spawning? When do they drop back?

You have two types of herring that spawn in our area. You have the alewife, and it's smaller subspecies the blueback.

 

The alewives are the first to arrive.  The alewife spawn in the ponds. They begin dropping back fairly quick after spawning. 

The blueback  are the last to arrive. Arriving almost at the end of the alewife run.  Unlike the alewife, the majority of the bluebacks spawn in the stream or river.  Often in the brushy undergrowth and blowdowns.  When we did our annual  spring run clean ups, I told the Americorps volunteers to use judgement when cleaning the run.  Leaving some brunch and undergrowth for the bluebacks to spawn.

 

The herring fry begin dropping back in late Sept, usually on a full moon. The fry peak around mid October.  Very common to visit your local run and see tens of millions of herring fry dropping downstream.

Several years ago we were experiencing night time fry kills at the Bournedale run. I met the DMFs anadromous biologist there several times in an attempt to figure it out. He came up with all sorts of wild theories, most if which not plausible.  

I spent several all night sessions before I figured it out. The cause was, largemouth bass and pickerel.  The bass and pickerel would stack up in schools in the lower pond, and wait. When the fry would begin dropping back by the millions at night, the bass and pickerel would rush the schools of fry, driving them back up into the stream, and out of the water and on the bank. I witnessed it with my own eyes.

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I believe it, bob_G

 

Usually the last big hoorah for my freshwater fishing season is a couple local spots where the bass literally stack on top of each other gorging themselves on herring fry. Look forward to it every year.

Edited by Intrepid95

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over 450k herring have passed through the counter in West Harwich. For perspective last year showed 1.1 million fish and they stopped counting in mid June. So i'd say they are on track for another strong year.

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1 hour ago, bradW said:

over 450k herring have passed through the counter in West Harwich. For perspective last year showed 1.1 million fish and they stopped counting in mid June. So i'd say they are on track for another strong year.

They also missed a bunch of herring that went in before the counter was put up too.

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