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Author Topic: Species found at PI Bay, Erie  (Read 1070 times)

Offline optimus140

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Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« on: Feb 12, 2018, 12:23 PM »
I’ve been ice fishing a few seasons in PI Bay, and wanted to ask other interested folks about their experience with what species of fish they target and have caught.

I mostly go around misery bay and the chestnut street boat launch. I have caught mostly pumpkinseed sunfish, bluegill, perch, crappie, the ocassional  bass, and one pike. I’ve seen other people catch an occasional steelhead.

I am really curious, there are a few species in the lake I have never caught or seen anyone catch through the ice. Has anyone ever caught, or seen anyone catch walleye, lake whitefish, or sheeps head? I would love to catch a walleye or whitefish through the ice! Do those species stay out of the bay, and stick to the lake? How about any other unusual species, or ones I haven’t thought of?

Offline davef

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #1 on: Feb 12, 2018, 02:10 PM »
A couple of years ago my buddy caught a burbot thru the ice in the bay.  I didn't see it but he said it was in the mid 20 inch category.   We also  caught smelt if you have any interest in them.

Offline onestring

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #2 on: Feb 12, 2018, 02:16 PM »
A couple years ago I got a 25 inch brown trout out of misery they are catching walleyes this year

Offline optimus140

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #3 on: Feb 12, 2018, 03:09 PM »
@davef that’s cool, I’ve seen people pull burbot, gobies, “silver perch” and sheeps head out of the channel, so I have wondered if any or all of them might wind up in the bay. I suspect at least some of them head back out in the lake for deeper water, in winter. Burbot look gross though, haha.

I’ve often heard people talk about “smelt” or “shad” and the like. I have often wondered if it’s kind of a catch-all term people use for undesirable fish. I think I may have seen those turn up dead in the early spring on the shore some years, but never caught any while fishing. I wouldn’t even know how to target them. I have marked large schools of fish a little higher up in the water column before in misery, that I heard some people refer to as shad.

Offline optimus140

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #4 on: Feb 12, 2018, 03:10 PM »
A couple years ago I got a 25 inch brown trout out of misery they are catching walleyes this year

That is awesome. I will have to check the fishing reports area to see if there’s more info about the walleye.

Offline crappieman2380

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #5 on: Feb 12, 2018, 06:14 PM »
@davef that’s cool, I’ve seen people pull burbot, gobies, “silver perch” and sheeps head out of the channel, so I have wondered if any or all of them might wind up in the bay. I suspect at least some of them head back out in the lake for deeper water, in winter. Burbot look gross though, haha.

I’ve often heard people talk about “smelt” or “shad” and the like. I have often wondered if it’s kind of a catch-all term people use for undesirable fish. I think I may have seen those turn up dead in the early spring on the shore some years, but never caught any while fishing. I wouldn’t even know how to target them. I have marked large schools of fish a little higher up in the water column before in misery, that I heard some people refer to as shad.

Smelt and shad are definitly 2 different fish, not a catch all term. I've personally never caught either, but my dad has told me they used to catch piles of smelt back in the day.

Offline Chute82

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #6 on: Feb 12, 2018, 07:10 PM »
back in the early 80’s a guy caught a turtle next to me in horseshoe pond.  Have never seen anything that strange caught in January
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Offline fishon21

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #7 on: Feb 12, 2018, 07:57 PM »
A couple weekends ago I caught a 21" steelhead and a 19" walleye and my son caught a 15" White Bass out of chestnut. And some perch but none to brag about.

Offline davef

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #8 on: Feb 12, 2018, 09:12 PM »
The smelt I caught would be right under the ice.  Even there they were hard to see but they would be in small schools.   I had one rod rigged with a small jig with maggots on.  I just jigged maybe a foot or so under the ice and would bring it up near the bottom of the ice.  They were all probably less than 5 inches but they were great eating.   I have caught one that was about 7 or 8 inches out in the lake while perching.

Offline Pullinslabs

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #9 on: Feb 13, 2018, 05:42 AM »
Catching a decent amount of walleye this year. I pulled in a 28 inch male a few weeks ago off liberty.

Offline optimus140

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #10 on: Feb 13, 2018, 06:36 AM »
Smelt and shad are definitly 2 different fish, not a catch all term. I've personally never caught either, but my dad has told me they used to catch piles of smelt back in the day.
Good to know, thanks crappieman! I haven’t caught either species or seen anyone targeting them. Did your dad used to eat the smelt, or were they incidentally caught while targeting other fish? What did he think of them?

Offline optimus140

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #11 on: Feb 13, 2018, 06:39 AM »
Catching a decent amount of walleye this year. I pulled in a 28 inch male a few weeks ago off liberty.
Awesome, thanks Pullinslabs! What pound test line are you using to catch them?

Offline optimus140

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #12 on: Feb 13, 2018, 06:40 AM »
back in the early 80’s a guy caught a turtle next to me in horseshoe pond.  Have never seen anything that strange caught in January
Ha! I wonder if it got snagged or was hungry. Thanks Chute

Offline optimus140

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #13 on: Feb 13, 2018, 06:46 AM »
A couple weekends ago I caught a 21" steelhead and a 19" walleye and my son caught a 15" White Bass out of chestnut. And some perch but none to brag about.
Wow that’s awesome fishon21. I’ve only fished chestnut a couple times so far this season, and I’ve just been catching perch there, also nothing to brag about mostly, with 2 or 3 hogs. I think white bass/silver perch get a bad rap as a junk fish, I always thought they tasted ok, what are your thoughts? I never caught one on ice though. Nice job with the steelhead and walleye

Offline optimus140

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #14 on: Feb 13, 2018, 06:49 AM »
The smelt I caught would be right under the ice.  Even there they were hard to see but they would be in small schools.   I had one rod rigged with a small jig with maggots on.  I just jigged maybe a foot or so under the ice and would bring it up near the bottom of the ice.  They were all probably less than 5 inches but they were great eating.   I have caught one that was about 7 or 8 inches out in the lake while perching.
Thanks for sharing davef! Next time I mark a school suspended, I might give that a try just to see what happens.

Offline crappieman2380

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #15 on: Feb 13, 2018, 11:17 AM »
Good to know, thanks crappieman! I haven’t caught either species or seen anyone targeting them. Did your dad used to eat the smelt, or were they incidentally caught while targeting other fish? What did he think of them?

He went up to catch the smelt. If I remember right just cut the head off, gut em, and fry em up

Offline Chute82

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #16 on: Feb 13, 2018, 05:45 PM »
Smelt you just need scissors and a case of beer.. my father would net them back in the 70’s when they ran the creeks.  Cut head off, insert scissors in vent cut towards head, gut  with finger, rinse, and repeat. 
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Offline captain54

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #17 on: Feb 13, 2018, 10:35 PM »
Dipped plenty out of Walnut,caught many in the bay right under the ice.

Offline optimus140

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #18 on: Feb 14, 2018, 06:49 AM »
Thanks Captain and Chute. Ever try using smelt as bait to catch a bigger fish? I wonder if you could use em like minnows or chubs. Or is that not allowed?

Offline Chute82

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #19 on: Feb 14, 2018, 07:31 AM »
Thanks Captain and Chute. Ever try using smelt as bait to catch a bigger fish? I wonder if you could use em like minnows or chubs. Or is that not allowed?

They are a invasive species so outside of the Great Lakes wouldn’t recommend it with live smelt. 
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Offline captain54

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #20 on: Feb 14, 2018, 01:17 PM »
Caught tons of pike on froze smelt out of Wilhelm back in the day. Like Chutes said,I wouldn't use any bait out of Erie in any inland water.

Offline PolarEscape

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #21 on: Feb 14, 2018, 04:57 PM »
caught a 30" carp through the ice on misery bay couple years back, what a fight on panfish rod, 3 lb test

Offline optimus140

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Re: Species found at PI Bay, Erie
« Reply #22 on: Feb 15, 2018, 07:05 AM »
Thanks captain and chute. Duly noted about keeping the smelt in the lake.

Polarescape, sounds fun

 



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