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Nov 30 in St John River , Kennebecasis and Hammond River. Oct 15 in lakes
It is only open until october 15 in lakes where there is a sport fishery open. Therefore, only lakes with smallmouth bass are still open to pickerel fishing until october 15. I think this is crazy and any primarily pickerel lake should be open until at least october 30. Ritchie, McManus and quite a few others rarely if ever see a trout in the lake. If anyone caught a trout out of these lakes, it might as well be a person eating it instead of a pickerel.
 

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It is only open until october 15 in lakes where there is a sport fishery open. Therefore, only lakes with smallmouth bass are still open to pickerel fishing until october 15. I think this is crazy and any primarily pickerel lake should be open until at least october 30. Ritchie, McManus and quite a few others rarely if ever see a trout in the lake. If anyone caught a trout out of these lakes, it might as well be a person eating it instead of a pickerel.
Who is to say that there are no bass in those lakes, they seem to show up everywhere else.
 

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Who is to say that there are no bass in those lakes, they seem to show up everywhere else.
The DNRE is the authority to say. This is how it will go. They will take your fishing tackle, read you your rights, charge you and tell you that they will be in contact with you once the prosecutor has approved their case. Then you will have to go to court and provide proof that there are smallmouth bass in that body of water against the DNRE's scientific data ( they at one time have studied most every lake in the area with trap nets etc, to determine species and populations). The wardens will tell you it is guilty until proven innocent with wildlife laws. I've discussed this all before with them because I tried to make my point that there are no sportfish in Ritchie lake and that you should be allowed to fish for them at least until october 15th, if not all year. Now, I didn't set trap nets in the lake to see if there any sportfish, but I know as I fact, any trout that gets into the lake, doesn't last long enough to be caught by an angler. I have seen a 14" trout that survived the lake and came up a brook, he wasn't pretty. As far as bass in the lake, there may have been at one time or another, but I have not heard of any reports since and as far as the DNRE is concerned, there are none.
 

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pickeral are open year round in tidal waters. all other waters are as described above.

the old rules for pickeral fishing, like all none sport fish, used to be part of the ice fishing rules. it used to be that any water without game fish was open all year, and ice fishing was allowed on them. now they tell us what lakes are open to ice fish for pickeral and ban us from all others. maybe they got tired of proving it, or they just didn't like allowing exceptions. the lakes along goldengrove are either full of pickeral or trout, yet the same stream connects most of them. i have never caught a trout in mystery or mckiel (the other mystery lake for us experienced types((old timers)), yet the stream can hold good trout and the lakes furthest up can have great numbers of trout. i have also caught yellow perc, sunnies and smallies in the mystery lakes....and maybe even a pike (grass pike, variation on northern pike, but i wasn't the one that identified it)
 

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I had no idea how aggressive pickerel are this time of year! I had never fished pickerel after September. I went up river to Gagetown yesterday with the intention to troll stripers, however the fog was so thick that I decided to throw some top water stuff into the weeds. For approx an hour, they were on almost every cast, ranging from 19 - 24". These guys were coming out of the weeds right into 12' deep water. I lost one that I would swear was a either a small muskie or the biggest pickerel I've ever seen. I only saw it for a second, as it hammered the bait right beside the boat, but it looked to be 35". It did look greenish like a pickerel, but from the muskie I've seen around here, they're greenish also. Anyway, it took the back half of my white 7" superfluke slapped it's tail giving me a bath, and swam on its merry little way. Good times!
 
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