Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Fishing log entry:
Got back out to tailwater on Saturday 11/18. Same fish were in the same places, only this time nearly all flow over the dam had ceased. I was able to walk along the cement slab all the way to the “pen” of carp… in the closest corner I dropped a green girdle bug right on a nice one and he sucked it up – saw the take and landed the fish. When I saw it was ~8-10 lbs I tried to land it fast so I could get on to the next fish – I used the net and scooped it up when it was still really green – manageable, but the fish was very wild as I removed hook and released. I wasn’t fast enough though – that fight scared all the fish into the back corner… from then on I was casting long distance and guessing at takes. I caught six more fish, but all but one were snagged! There are just so many fish in there – every time I thought I had a take I’d set the hook and snag a different fish. Two were snagged right in the tail – wow, does that make for a monster fight. One of them was 8-10 lbs, but because he was tail-hooked I didn’t even SEE the fish for 5+ minutes! I tried a dry fly for a while, but there were no carp surfacing like those I saw last time out. I fished from ~1230-1430, and the sky was very overcast – temps were low-mid 30 F… little or no wind. I did land one carp that apparently has cancer – amazingly large growth just back from gill plate (may post pic later). I also landed a carp that I would have kept if Em were not pregnant right now… perfect little 2 lber that probably didn’t have much mercury in its tissues yet. It was a great two hours, but I don’t like snagging fish, and I didn’t find any biggies… need to get back and try again. Still – hard to complain when you fight ~50-60 lbs of fish in a two hour period.


Blogger John Montana said...

are you serious about eating one? i am not a big fan of fish in general, so carp are way down my list of fish to eat. let me know if you try it.

6:11 PM  
Blogger Wendy Berrell said...

Yes, I am going to eat a carp. I asked the fishing community about their experiences (CAG and Roughfish.com), and found that many people eat them... I'm sure you've heard that they are the most consumed fish in the world. I looked into the mercury data, and confirmed a suspicion: carp are no worse than other species with respect to "contamination" issues. In fact, the piscivorous fish usually accumulate metals and PCBs faster than grazers... MN Dept of Health basically confirmed this (see pasted text below). If you look at the Cannon River data online you'll see that there is a fish consumption advisory out for walleye, but not for small carp... Generally speaking, some of the pristine rivers up north show greater mercury problems than out SE MN "polluted" rivers, because metals accumulation is an airshed - not a watershed - issue.

[from MN Dept Health]
Yes your interpretation and posting of our consumption advice is correct. However in addtition to size, species is important particularly with respect to mercury contamination. As you point out fish species that eat other fish generally have higher levels of mercury.

Thanks for interest and for passing information to others.

>>> 9/1/2006 12:28:26 PM
I just posted a discussion item on eating carp: http://www.carpanglersgroup.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=17536

Do you concur that smaller carp are okay to consume? You advisories suggest that SIZE, not specie is the critical concern when considering mercury concentrations.

If I have posted something that is inaccurate, please alert me and I'll edit accordingly.



12:18 PM  
Blogger John Montana said...

i'm sure you know your stuff about contamination etc. i'm worried about taste! i am not a big fan of fish in general, though well cooked salmon is pretty tough to beat.

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