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Smelt Fishing

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#1 Guest_Eyebiter_*

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Posted 09 April 2007 - 10:35 AM

I've been doing some smelt fishing in Chicago and was wondering if anyone else has been since the season opened. I have yet to catch a smelt but I've picked up plenty of Rock Bass, a small perch, and a quite a few of those evil round goby.

#2 Guest_bullhead_*

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Posted 09 April 2007 - 01:54 PM

Still kind of cold for smelt, I think. I have not been out in 20+ years. That was the pre-ruffe, pre-goby days. Besides smelt, we would get a few small trout/salmon now and then. This was at Calumet Park and the State Line power plant.

#3 Guest_bullhead_*

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Posted 09 April 2007 - 01:58 PM

I remember trying to keep a few alive. They did not last long. Probably too warm, not to mention the stress of being gill netted.

I also used to feed the eggs to my fish. They really enjoyed the treat.

#4 Guest_Eyebiter_*

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Posted 10 April 2007 - 08:39 AM

I plan on keeping the eggs to feed my fish...IF I catch any.

I think you're right about the water being too warm. Smelt seem to like it pretty cold and unless you have a chiller...

They seem like they'd be pretty skittish fish too, so an aquarium might be too much stress. I did manage to pull a nice small perch out of the gill net unharmed and is happy at home.

#5 Guest_NateTessler13_*

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 01:53 PM

I've tried on numerous occassions to adapt Rainbow Smelt to the aquarium. Out of the 40 or so individuals that I've tried, only 1 or 2 lasted beyond a day. I had access to a ton of them at a powerplant I used to work at. If you are trying to keep them alive the only advice I would have would be to put a few individuals in a bucket by themselves with the water you collected them in. Then add two handfuls of Kosher Salt to their water. When you bring them home, put an airline in the bucket and add some aquarium water to the bucket. Keep warming up their water until the bucket temp. is similar to the aquarium temp....then hope for the best.

#6 Guest_Eyebiter_*

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 05:06 PM

That's exactly how I adampted a rockbass and a perch...without salt. So far they're doing great. Actually, I used a cooler. It took about 3 days.

#7 Guest_NateTessler13_*

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Posted 26 April 2007 - 09:46 AM

Nice, I add the salt to help stimulate the fish to secrete more of that protective slime they have on their bodies to strengthen their immune systems.

#8 Guest_Eyebiter_*

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Posted 26 April 2007 - 11:23 AM

I do that with my tropicals but never thought of it for my natives. Of course, now that I think of it - didn't both smelt and those damn gobies come from salt water originally?

#9 Guest_Mike_*

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Posted 18 June 2007 - 03:12 AM

Did you get any smelt?
I used to go back in the late 1980's at Edison (In/IL) but I have not heard of anyone doing any good in years.
I would go again if they make a comeback.
I caught small trout and a cisco by USX Gary works discharge in 1987.
A friend of mine had his net torn up one time by a large brown trout.


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