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We had John Odenkirk, from VA Fish & Wildlife, come out today to take a fish sampling on five (5) of Ashburn Village's ponds. At 10:30, with the help Matt (VADIF), Joe (AV) and John Casale, they started the process of shocking the fish so they could get a count.
What we found is that we have a very nice fishery here at the Village.....
.....but of course, we already knew that. We have some work to do to make sure we sustain the fishery. One of the 1st things we will need to do is to remove all the crappie from the lakes so we are going to have some fun over the next month or so.
Water temps are still below 50.
I will post his report on this thread as soon as I receive it.
awesome guys - working the electric boat can be a lot of fun. i've done it a few times with Chip Augustine on the Rapp when he's doing samples for the shad and other spring runners. always interesting to see what will come up.
more so, is seeing the fish that you are NOT catching! can be suprising.
Thanks for all your work on the Ashburn Lakes. Great picture. I suddenly have a taste for fried crappie
I wonder if he will save us a piece or two??
As promised here are John Odenkirk's recomendations for our lakes. They have been submitted to the Ashburn Village Board of Directors:
1) Promote harvest of black crappie in all ponds. You should require that any crappie caught be removed from the ponds. They are excellent eating but will stunt and stockpile in your ponds. They will also suppress the more desirable fish (largemouth bass and bluegill).
2) Leave a bigger (wider) riparian buffer strip (except for access/fishing areas) along the edge of the ponds. Do now mow to the water's edge. This buffer will discourage geese, reduce erosion, cycle nutrients and storm water better, reduce algae and provide shade and
forage for fish.
3) Thin some of the bass - especially from Pavilion Lake. Wherever a large proportion of bass is composed of a small number of size groups, these should be thinned. I recommend a 14" maximum size limit in Pavilion. Anglers should be allowed to keep several less than 14" bass per day, but none larger than 14" should be removed.
You may also want to put a large slot limit on Cedar (after the 14" slot has been in place a while). In this case, a 14-22" slot or the 14" maximum should work.
On the others, let State regulations apply except that you will probably want to reduce the bluegill bag to around 10 per day.
4) Stock golden shiners as bass forage in all ponds - I would stock larger fish than you did last time and as many as funds allow.
5) Stock Red Ear sunfish as an alternative, desirable species in all ponds (as funds allow) at a rate of about 200 per acre.
6) Create alternative habitat/structures such as cedar or Christmas tree reefs in all ponds. These should be weighed down with suitable ballast (cinder blocks, etc.) in 6-10' of water.