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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone fish the Stave for steelhead? They release 20 000 every year. Even if only 5000 fish return that is good odds for such a short river. Or is it overlooked by everyone?
 

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Hatchery steelhead usually have around a 1% return rate so of the 20,000 I believe that is 200 returning fish.This is just my expierience from working in other hatcheries.


Hotrod
 

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I have fished it for steel before without any luck. But at the same time, I didn't fish it as much as I did the Vedder to get my first steely out of there. Only tried it for a few hours on a couple of different trips.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
hotrod said:
Hatchery steelhead usually have around a 1% return rate so of the 20,000 I believe that is 200 returning fish.This is just my expierience from working in other hatcheries.
Hotrod
1% :eek: that is surprising statistics. :'(
 

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That's odd hotrod, I've read that the return on hatchery steelhead is 3% or 4%. ::) Where are you getting your information from? I guess that the ratio could be different depending on the river system. Is your info based on the Stave itself or as a general rule. My numbers are the returning percentages for the Stamp. Just curious.

Tight Lines, Nates
 

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Last year saw a shortage of brood and Vedder hatchery fish were used for broodstocking.
I am not positive on the exact numbers of smolts that were released for this years return but I'm certain it was short of intended goals.

I will talk to the guy who oversees the program and get exact details.

I am 99% sure that anyone wanting to or able to do broodstocking there would be much appreaciated.

Obviously these fish are of mixed origin as are other LM stocks(despite what steelhead huggers would believe :happy:) so using hatchery fish is considered acceptable.
This kind of practice does fly in the face of MOE beliefs and I also think using any returning fish would be far more sensible.

On the topic of returns, some of the smolt releases for this years returning fish were way below intended goals and I think clipped fish will be scarce in a number of sytems.

The good old Vedder is not one of them however and we should see a continued excellent clipped fish component and continued grea wild return.

To say anglers need to step up pressure on MOE to provide us with fish to angle for, would be a gross understatement. I urge all Steelhead anglers to get involved any way you can, ask serious questions and demand serious answers.

This could be a great accomplisment for the local websites, to bring awareness to the vanishing runs of Georgia Basin Steelhead.
 

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nates said:
That's odd hotrod, I've read that the return on hatchery steelhead is 3% or 4%. ::) Where are you getting your information from? I guess that the ratio could be different depending on the river system. Is your info based on the Stave itself or as a general rule. My numbers are the returning percentages for the Stamp. Just curious.

Tight Lines, Nates
This number is based on my expeirience from broodstocking steelhead on other systems. If there is a 3-4% return that is a very good survival rate.I suppose it can vary from system to system but the conservative number is the norm.

Hotrod
 

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I believe the length of this system and it's proximity to tidal water dooms any chance of a decent steelhead return. The Vedder broodstock now being used (and most any strain of mykiss) require healthy nursury water in which they will reside for 2,3 or four years before their marine migration. The Stave simply does not have the habitat so support a large population of smolts. Young rainbows/steelhead have a tendancy to wander when food sources are scarce...and with the Fraser right there they probably don't stick around long enough to get the Stave imprinted in their homing instincts.

Simply put, you could plant as many smolts as you like in this system but it can only support so many fish per mile & her returns show this. While sockeye need a nursery lake to survive, steelhead need a nursery stream & the Stave is a poor one.

Typically, returning Stave fish show up in March and April. They return late & don't stick around for long, so the few that do return are only available to us sporties for a very short period of time. Rare is the December Steelhead in the Stave, probably nonexistant. :2cents:

The Chilliwack fish were chosen for brood because of their tendancy to show up early & stay late :thumbup: a trait we all love in winter steel.

I have fished this flow for Steel since the mid 80's & have seen very few :beerchug: but they are there...good luck & tight loops.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks Jack. The reason I asked is because a couple of aquaintances caught 2 steelie in november coho fishing. Seemed a little early for me. I've heard stories of the stave being decent in years past. So I thought early fish past reports maybe here is something there. :-\
 

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MoE has the smolts in a net pen in the lake right above the dam so they are imprinted with Stave water, that's not a problem. Then they grow them to a size that makes them ready to head to saltwater right after release in the river below the dam. Food shouldn't be an issue then. The problems would appear to be with 1-Ocean survival, 2-The stock used is mainly Chilliwack river fish so tyhey are not from the Stave to begin with, 3-timing of release or 4- something else that's unknown.
 

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rln said:
MoE has the smolts in a net pen in the lake right above the dam so they are imprinted with Stave water, that's not a problem. Then they grow them to a size that makes them ready to head to saltwater right after release in the river below the dam. Food shouldn't be an issue then. The problems would appear to be with 1-Ocean survival, 2-The stock used is mainly Chilliwack river fish so tyhey are not from the Stave to begin with, 3-timing of release or 4- something else that's unknown.
Very interesting rln....How long do they 'pen' these smolts in Hayward Lk? What size "makes them ready" to head to the salt? Do you believe they reside in this river after release? Has there been such a thing as a Stave strain of Mykiss in our fishing lives or are they long extinct? I was under the impression the river historically had a tiny run of Steel as Stave Falls was a natural barrier & made for a short river...but I wasn't around when the damn went in so.... :beerchug: Sorry 'bout all the ?'s Robbie I cut my teeth on this flow & any info about her history fascinates the hell out of me :thumbup:
 

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size makes them ready to head to salt. Once they reach a certain size they ready to go. Most leave but some never leave. Same deal happens on the Vedder/Chilliwack and that's why MoE has allowed a trout fishery in July when the river opens in the past. The Hayward Lake thing has been done for a few years now trying to get better imprinting on the little guys. Last winter had another problem that may affected what was in the river. When they were working on the dam, the water draw downrelease caused too much nitrogen gas (or some other form of gas) in the water and there was a small fish kill (cutthroat and steelhead observed) and this could have affected the steelhead return in some sort of way.
 

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I have heard tales of long ago, that the Stave indeed had a good run of it's own steelhead.

About a decade ago I had a good late December week on the Stave. I caught 7 fish and killed a couple of clipped fish. I returned a handful of times throughout the rest of the season and caught nothing else.

A dozen trips since and nada for me, but I haven't bothered to bring my pontoon YET ;), maybe this year.
 
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