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Will the Ohio River ever have a Blue catfish population comparable to that of the James River? I know of the efforts being put forth to re-establish this species to what it was before the locks/dams were put in...but are the efforts enough to get the river back to the condition it once was? If there is a chance that it will get that way again, how long will it take? Just looking for some of your thoughts on this subject.

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The biggest problem that I can see with the growth of the blue cat population in the Ohio would be the commercial fishing allowed by Kentucky. Now where Ohio and West Virginia borders I could see a good chance of the river becoming a good blue cat fishery. Since there is no commercial fishing allowed in that section of the river and with West Virginia's attempts to stock and reintroduce them into the river. It will take a few more years for these fish to reach nice sizes but I think it will happen. Now if Kentucky would do something with the commercial fishing I think that stretch of river could become a great trophy blue cat fishery. Just my thoughts on the subject.
 

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i doubt it will ever get to what the James, or any more southern rivers are. the more south you go the land and water is just so much more "fertile". before the "white man" messed things all up on the Ohio it may not have been much better than what it is now:confused2:.
 

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I have to agree but if ohio dnr would get their lazy you know whats :eek:oooh:and match west virginia to stock the blue fingerlings back in this awesome body of water it would greatly help out the issue. Not everyone would have the money to go to the James river in Virginia and having a fishery of this good so close to home would create new revenue that ohio needs badly. honestly, the ohio has good sauger fishery, stipers, channel catfish and great shovelhead populations. the ohio river should be the leader on this matter of restocking this awesome gamefish after all the river is named after the very state. all of us should press the issue and get ohio dnr to stock blues back into this awesome river rick here is the link to contact the ohio dnr over this issue http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/contactform/tabid/10750/Default.aspx
 

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I am very angry that we do not stock the ohio river with the blue catfish kind of funny that west virginia has taken the lead over ohio with helping reestablished this awesome fish back in the ohio. maybe we should called the river the west virginia river seeing that they are setting the example on this issue. this is the email I sent ohio dnr a few minutes ago rick:smile2:
 

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Josh …….. the James River is a tidal influenced river and I am sure has a much wider and larger supply of food than the Ohio River does. Like Dinkbuster said it is much richer in nutrients and being further south they have a longer growing season. Another factor may be that Ohio owns very little of the Ohio River. With the damns, stocked fish would pretty much be stuck in the pools they were stocked in and this may affect the reproduction. I am pretty sure that Ohio isn’t interested in stocking the downstream (Kentucky) pools for the commercial fisherman to harvest. Most states will only stock fish of one kind in a body of water for a predetermined number of years and then relay on it to propagate on it own, unless the fish is a hybrid that will not reproduce.

Having worked for ODNR for a number of years I can say with certainty, if you are going to write them with a request, you need to write in a positive manner, stating all of the positive results that a stocking can have on the state or a given area. Being negative or sarcastic in writing them will do absolutely no good and get you no positive results ….. “That is my opinion and I am sticking to it.” ….Garry- :wink:
 

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i would much rather see blues stocked in inland lakes that have an over abundance of shad. CJ Brown, Grand Lake St. Marys, Indian Lake, and Cowan i think would support blues well.
 

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i would much rather see blues stocked in inland lakes that have an over abundance of shad. CJ Brown, Grand Lake St. Marys, Indian Lake, and Cowan i think would support blues well.
i agree, the old rumor was their used to be blues in indian lake, i think it was people that just didnt know the difference from channels,, that would be great if they did stock them, i think they would thrive as well.
 

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If and when the ODNR starts to stock blues I wouldn't look for them to stock the Ohio River. This being due to the fact that Ohio does not own the river. It is governed by the bordering states. It may have the same name as our state but it is not ours. There is several inland lakes the have a sufficient food supply to support some blues. Although I am sure the ODNR will have there hands full when it comes to stocking blues into them by the "sport" fishermen.
 

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i agree, the old rumor was their used to be blues in indian lake, i think it was people that just didnt know the difference from channels,, that would be great if they did stock them, i think they would thrive as well.
I think indian lake would be a great place to stock blues, there are so many saugeye and walleye that the channels can hardly keep up. Indian lake is a pretty large lake, the biggest in the area and they have a three day catfishing tournament, the rules are catch the biggest fish for all three days and you win, only one fish. the largest caught in this tournament in the past few years has barely been over ten pounds, and i have run in with saugeye and walleye almost that big down there. I think some maintaining needs to be done on indian lake.
 

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Just remember guys, before the DNR would introduce a large predator into a inland lake, they would make sure it wasnt already a fabulous Saugeye or Bass lake since those fisheries are hard to maintain, plus the bass guys would go ballistic if they stocked someplace like Indian Lake with blues. Id really be suprised if they did that, my money would be on the deeper lakes like Ceasers and East Fork. Just my opinion though. Also knw the DNR at one time had stocked 2 of the inland canal lakes ( Buckeye I think and another one , cant remember which one) back many years and neither took off .

Salmonid
 

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A month or so ago I posted about a conversation I had a fisheries supervisor for Div. of Wildlife ... there is talk about putting blues in a couple of the lakes. One determining factor he said was the current spawning population of shad in those lakes. One lake we discussed that has the potential and the possibility of being stocked with blues is Dillon. But again it is just in the talking stage which means it could be 5 to 10 years before anything is done. .... Garry-
 

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One thing to note when you are stocking blues is they will be the top of the foods chain and down on the james where there used to be channel cats years ago you will not find many now.Like others have said you need a big bait source for these fish to get big and the james being a tidal river is just loaded with gizzard shad,herring,white bass and others.I have caught a couple of blues in the willow island pool that were stocked by west virginia one close to 20lbs.I do wish ohio would start a stocking with west virginia on the pools they border.Ohio need to put a stop to people selling fish out of our rivers to pay ponds to.
 

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i agree the ohio river is one of the most underrated blue cat fisheries in the country. if they could manage this fishery blues could also get into the great miami scioto and muskigum river to add to their fisheries as well. ohio is letting commercial fisherman sell big cats to these pay lake take the best and charge a arm and leg for them. while the rest of us miss out. just my 2 sense rick:big_smile:
 

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I Fish the waters of the Ohio where Kentucky, West Virgina, and Ohio meet.
I wish Kentucky would stock more Blues in this area but it seems all there worried about is trout and bass in lakes and small streams.
 

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I'm from the Fairmont, West Virginia area on the Monongahela River and it's worse. Don't hear too often someone catching a blue, but in fairness I've never really aggresively searched them out. Most of the time my neighbor and I fish the same spots from the bank where we can put a couple of chairs and relax in the evenings.

Got hooked on blues by fishing a couple of pay pond establishments near here. What an awesome fish.

Funny though, whenever people here talk about catching the big cats they say you have to fish the Ohio.
 

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i agree the ohio river is one of the most underrated blue cat fisheries in the country. if they could manage this fishery blues could also get into the great miami scioto and muskigum river to add to their fisheries as well. ohio is letting commercial fisherman sell big cats to these pay lake take the best and charge a arm and leg for them. while the rest of us miss out. just my 2 sense rick:big_smile:
Rick, The sad thing is Ohio doesn't even own the Ohio river, W Va and Kantuck do. All the commercial guys have to do is buy one of those states liscenses, and the river is fair game for them. They can then sell the fish to any pond in Ohio legally. They aren't supposed to be able to sell any fish caught from rivers inside the state like the Muskingum or Scioto, or GMR. But there is no enforcement of that cause they are just "catfish". Just ask some of the members on here that actually reported poaching and selling to the DNR in the past. If it ain't a deer, or bird they could care less.
 

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thats right skip only thing ohio is worried about is turkeys and deer while there is hardly no quail and pheasants to hunt and the only fish they stock around here is trout
 

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Oh and there are strict limits on Bass and Muskie! ??? How many of you fish for Muskie? If you could catch 50 inch Muskie on a limb-line anywhere in the state. I bet it would be outlawed by next week!
 

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skip i agree but :big_smile:eek:hio dnr is missing the boat on not stocking blues. it would help to take some of the pressure of the flatheads also. give more variety to catfishers of ohio.
 
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