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Fishy-gurl

hundreds of thousands of fish?

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Seems wrong to let them die, or even to let everyone just take large fish like that...easily....what will happen to future fishing there if the large ones are all taken?
Does it mean that if they turn off the aerator, the whole fish population will die?

Then what, restock and in about 6-7 years you'll have large fish again?

Is this happening on any other lakes?

I guess I didn't mean this to be "20 Questions"

thanks, Fishy-gurl.

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Does anyone know of a HSOforum that will host this picture so I can get it on the forum? have done it before, but it has been so long I forgot how to do it.

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I can see a few dead perch and a few eyes...look for the smaller fish in the pic...too bad, but it happens all over every time we get snow and low water.

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A friend of mine netted a 14lb eye he was going to put on the wall. When he layed it out on the ice and went to climb out another guy grabbed it and took off! My biggest question is this. Less than 100yds away, above the dam, is Fountian lake. The aerators are running there. Why couldn`t the game fish be put in there? It was a sad sight to see and hope it never happens again. Flip

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I talked to a guy there today that was there this morning and he said that all he could see was carp.
My brother in law was there when they opened it up to netting. He took home 25 2-3 LB walleye. He saw a lot of other people taking larger fish and said if they didn't they would just die anyway. He said once it was on the news the people just flocked there.
They said the DNR plans to restock it later this year.

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It makes me wonder how the DNR would be able to enforce a posession limit for fish in your freezer. I know the law allows for only one limit in your posession. What would happen if I filled my freezer with eyes and a CO checked my freezer? I have absolutely no intentions of doing this, but if I thought of it, others will too. I think the idea of relocating them to Fountain lake is a great idea. I would be impressed if a local fishing club took it on. Just my $.02.

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I saw a similar story about a different body of water where the fish congregate for the same reason, and the dnr and other groups took the fish alive for stocking of other lakes, why don't they just do that here(and get rid of some carp while they are at it.)

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A friend sent me this story today along with a picture. Anyone else heard of this or know where the story came from? Sorry if this has already been posted:

"Hundreds of thousands of fish congregating in the channel between Fountain and Albert Lea lakes Thursday caused quite a commotion, stopping traffic as residents gathered and pondered why they were there.
The flopping fish churned the water as they fought for oxygenated water, low because of the snow cover on the lakes, said Brian Kuphal, District Enforcement Supervisor with the Department of Natural Resources.
Fish flocked to the channel because of the high oxygen content, said Hugh Valiant, DNR Fisheries supervisor. Fountain Lake usually brings additional oxygen into Albert Lea Lake through the dam. The water actually gains oxygen as it passes over the dam when it creates what Valiant terms an "additional mechanical disturbance." Such natural aereation normally prevents the death of fish in wintertime.
"This year is different than the majority of other years because it's more dry," he said, adding that the water is moving slower over the dam.
The DNR has been monitoring oxygen levels in the lakes all winter, which was still good two weeks ago, said Kuphal. But by early this week levels had dropped to dangerous levels and on Thursday sent the carp, perch and walleye looking for oxygen in the channel.
Increased snow cover, cold temperatures and low water levels are to blame for the natural fish kill, said Kaphal.
The bay segment of Albert Lea Lake, off New York Point is sufficiently aerated, said Valiant, and though all of the aeration systems are working, they simply cannot supply enough oxygen to support the entire lake.
Local taxidermist Gary Hanson was saddened at the sight of the fish struggling for survival.
"This is making me just sick," he said. "There is a whole shoreline full of dead walleye. It's a terrible thing."
Ice fishermen were the first to notice a change. Vern Iverson of Austin and Leroy Peterson of the Conger said the fish stopped biting one morning early in the week, a time when fish are usually most active.
Iverson caught about 20 fish last week, including a two-pound walleye, and Peterson caught some perch a few weeks ago.
"The fish seemed to be slowing down this week," he said.
Fisheries spent a good deal of time Friday morning assessing the oxygen content of Albert Lea Lake with oxygen sensors. At about 1:30 p.m. Friday, the DNR explored other options including aeration of the lakes. Officials decided to allow fishermen to snag, net or spear the fish. Such liberalized fishing is usually illegal. People still may not use commercial gear, explosives or chemicals.
The portion of Albert Lea Lake from the Bridge Avenue dam to the I-35 bridge was opened to unlimited catch. The atmosphere was party-like, as people called out to each other - "You want some fish?" - was the most frequent phrase of the day.
Pickup trucks were filled as people sought "trophy fish." Some people said they saw eight-, 10, 12 and even 14-pound fish in the channel.
The DNR is considering shutting the aeration system off to go for a complete kill. But they will not make a determination until further tests are conducted. More tests are scheduled Tuesday morning.
"We will have significant fish kill no matter what we do," Valiant said.
It is unknown what will happen to the dead fish. The DNR is not responsible for clean up when there is a natural fish kill, Kuphal said. Clean up may be up to local authorities.
The liberalized fishing rules will continue until Feb. 29.

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