12125, RE: Declaring Clear Lake Hitch Threatened or Endangered|
Posted by MountainBass, Wed Dec-12-12 10:52 AM
Nice post Rob.
I want to look into this some more. I will read some of the primary literature, and put in my two pennies.
That said, right now, just having glanced over the petition, I think bass fisherman are not going to suffer from this. Hitch are like trout to the bass of clearlake, a large, spineless energy source that have not evolved any protection agains the predation of LMB. The CBD is now pushing for their protection, which means in an ideal world, their numbers will increase. We also know that it is basically impossible to wipe out an invasive predatory gamefish without killing the entire lake with rotenone. I worked with DFG removing Pike from Lake Davis with elctrofishing boats. Hundreds of pike a day for years didnt remove the population. Its been a similar story with a lot of green sunfish removal attempts, which are pretty close relatives of LMB. So knowing that removal of bass from clearlake is politically and biologically impossible for many reasons, I think they will just have to focus on habitat improvements and water quality and usage mitigation.
Foe has become friend here, but folks are weary over the trout thing. Remember they are not out to get anyone. They are scientists who have devoted their lives to protecting fish, wildlife and the environment in general. They are not our enemies, rather, they are objective in nature, which means they may put forth ideas that we totally disagree with sometimes, and they may do somehting that is totally in our interest other times, such as increasing the number of hitch (something analogous to trout in a trout-free environment), in clearlake.