How's the smelt season been so far? - Page 2 - Smelt - New Brunswick Fishing

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How's the smelt season been so far?


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#21 Retroboy

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Posted 05 February 2014 - 11:10 PM

Any updates on catch sizes, folks? Things still down or have there been some runs?

 

I keep hearing tales of the 'glory days' when there were enormous runs and you'd limit out a lot more often. Makes me sad that I missed all those years of fishing in the dead of winter. :(

 

"Quick, Mr. Peabody, to the wayback machine!"


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#22 brunswicker

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Posted 06 February 2014 - 08:03 AM

Its still pretty slow now, at least it is at my shack, we have caught one friggin fish in the last 3 nights
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#23 emptynetmaster

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Posted 07 February 2014 - 08:10 PM

I popped in for the last hour of the tide coming in today in Shediac.  I managed to catch enough for a decent feed.  The bite was definately not strong, but like Casey Hayward said in another thread, I caught a few of them on red yarn, no hook, just the yarn LOL.  The rest were caught on smelt throat and a little red salmon egg on a red lure.  Red means dead there anyway.  They were leaving a baited hook alone and hitting a little red bead on the line hard!  Good times, heading back out Sunday and will hopefully hit more of the incoming tide.

Cheers


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#24 bakeapples

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Posted 08 February 2014 - 08:58 AM

1 smelt again Meenans Cove, high tide last night. Had some other bites while I had the ice rod in the holder. Left after 90 mins as the ice fog was frosting up everything.

 

Other 4 times:

2/5 - 1 smelt 60 mins

 

2/1 - 3 smelt, 1 tomcod ~ 60 mins

 

Twice Jan - nothing

 

 


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#25 Retroboy

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Posted 09 March 2014 - 06:55 PM

For those who weren't out for the past few weeks, things look like they're finally picking up in southern NB if you've tried the right spots and used the right techniques. Cameron Road (draw a line from Dominion Park and extend it past Renforth another 7km or so) finally gave me that 'hot' smelt day that I've read about, and I caught 40 in about 3 hours there with near-constant nibbles as sunset approached. I'm sure my count would have been higher as I continue to pick up the technique on how to best fish them. Dominion's a bit slower but the average size is a bit bigger, so with the exception of a dismal Friday it wasn't a waste of time either.

 

Good thing there's probably another few weeks of the season given how cold it's been to thicken the ice. Seems the best part of the fishin's around or after people have to take their shacks off the ice. 


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#26 Stroover

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 08:29 AM

I've been hearing reports of lots of smelts being caught at Cameron, but my daugher and I went to the shack on Sunday and she got one and lost one, me, I lost one. I'm not sure what time of day or what bait those fellas were using to catch 110 between two guys in less than two hours, but it sure wasn't what we were using and at the same time of day. People were taking their shacks off because of the impending rain storm on Wednesday as it has the potential to wreak havoc on the ice near shore. I think we'll be doing the same tomorrow.


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#27 Homebrew76

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 08:33 AM

Pieces of nightcrawlers and shrimp both were working fantastic over the weekend.   Craig AC had some success with powerbait, but the shrimp and crawlers were definately working better than the powerbait.

 

They were mostly small smelt, and without the spring on the end of the rod, I probably wouldn't have felt many of the bites.

 

You want to head down tonight JC so I can teach you how smelt fishing works?  lol, j/k!


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Cheers,
joe

 

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#28 Retroboy

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 10:50 AM

Prawns also worked even a little better than shrimp for me, and I hauled in around 40 over a few hours of fishing in the morning and then at suppertime on Saturday. A friend gave me a few prawn pieces at Dominion and they seemed to get cleaned off the hook a little more often than the shrimp did. Could have been because they were fresher or perhaps more reddish (which makes me think an experiment with food colouring might be in order...). 

 

I'm getting the impression that there are massive shoals of fish that are composed of smaller schools (which is why fishing goes hot and cold over periods of the same day) that move from place to place in sequence. Last week was Cameron's turn, for sure. Sorry you missed it if so, Stroov.

 

And the spring was essential for detecting those incredibly light hits unless you happen to have a very light rod. The bite wasn't strong at all in the early afternoon but picked up with much firmer hits around supper when you could feel them after the bait.


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#29 Stroover

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 01:23 PM

Ya, I would've bought one of those springs had you not bought all of them, Retroboy. :angry:  lol


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#30 Retroboy

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 07:46 PM

Bought mine in Fredericton. Go grump at someone else that bought 'em locally.  Hi Homebrew. :D 


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#31 Homebrew76

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 08:08 PM

Chris, I may have to stop admitting to my kids that I let you hang out with me. Heaven knows I wouldn't admit it to another angler. :-)

I have 2 ice rods for which I purchased a single pack of 2 springs. If I ever need more I'll go homemade. Shouldn't be hard to make something up that would work just as well.
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Cheers,
joe

 

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#32 Stroover

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Posted 11 March 2014 - 09:44 AM

We tried again last night as the tide was getting to its highest. They were hitting pretty good until a couple of hours after that, then it shut down. We ended up with about 80'ish. Gonna do one last fish fry this weekend, I think.


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#33 bakeapples

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 04:47 PM

No luck ice fishing? Try this instead:

 

http://www.winnipegs...t-hoser-hot-tub


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#34 gmac

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Posted 07 March 2015 - 02:26 PM

I've been fishing smelt for over 30 years and this is the worst year on record. We had better luck at the first of the season,but only were averaging 20-60 for a 4 or 5 hr. fish. Last couple of weeks it's down to 5 or 6. Lots of tommy cod in the 10' ' range and I foul hooked something last Wed. that looked like a sea trout. Had it right up to the hole before the hook pulled loose,bright silvery color about 16 or so inches long. I'm actually thinking of taking my shack off early and concentrate on pickerel. Most of the shacks on the Cameron are froze in,there's gonna be a lot of junk on the ice come take off day!


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#35 Retroboy

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Posted 07 March 2015 - 04:53 PM

gmac, where do you normally fish now?

 

I was at Cameron today with TheRealCraigAC and another friend. Catch was "decent" as a measure for this year with me taking 34 tinkers in total home including donations from others, but nowhere near my usual runs of 40+ in half the time. With some exceptions that I've heard through the grapevine, overall almost everyone is complaining that the smelt catch has been off over the season. 

 

I fully expect take-off day will be extended this year. My 5" auger broke through at somewhere around 2 1/2 feet, so there's plenty of ice and people that want to save their shacks are REALLY going to need a few inches of soft stuff at the top. 


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#36 Atoqwa'su

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Posted 07 March 2015 - 10:04 PM

This has been my worst year smelt fishing ever. This should be an eye opener for folks who tent to catch way too many smelts or who keep smelts without the intention to eat them that it is not an 'infinite' fishery, and should consider only keeping what they need, and not feed the seagulls at the end of the day.


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#37 Micropterus

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Posted 07 March 2015 - 10:51 PM

Years ago, when I fished around the salmon cages inn the summer there were all kinds of smelt hanging around near the bottom. They also liked hanging around the sewage pipes in SJ harbour. I wouldn't doubt they all got ISA or got killed off by sea lice from hanging around aquaculture sites. Smelt have basically become extinct or near extinct in half their native range and the Americans are realizing that smelt are in big trouble. http://www.nmfs.noaa...re_08102010.pdf


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#38 MackTrev

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Posted 08 March 2015 - 11:13 AM

further indication that we are terrible at managing out resources. Salmon cages within 1km of the water should be outright banned. Complete and utter stupidity on the part of wildlife management. GRRR


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#39 Brent

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Posted 08 March 2015 - 02:11 PM

Please don't think for one moment that decisions to allow or support marine salmon aquaculture originate with, or find support among, provincial fish and wildlife management staff.  :mellow:

brent


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#40 gmac

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Posted 09 March 2015 - 08:40 AM

I read in the news the other day that Conner Bros. in Black's Harbour would not be using their summer crew for processing herring this year because of low numbers.Buddy said that the weir fishing is almost done for,not because of no herring, but because the water temps are to warm and the fish just aren't coming in close to shore like they use to. The boats are still gettiing big soundings on sonar but all out in deeper water.I wonder if the water temps would have anything to do with the low smelt runs this year.I really don't think that ice fishermen using hook and line are going to make much of an impact on the smelt populations,but the guys with the nets out sure would as well as anyone that dip nets for them when they head up the brooks to spawn in the spring. Anyway,going to head down to the Cameron today and try again,may save some of the smaller tommy cod for pickerel bait!


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