Columbia River Shad?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by aplTyler, May 13, 2013.

  1. GAT

    GAT Dumbfounded

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    The irony, when it comes to invasive species in the Columbia, is that there is a bounty in Oregon for Northern Pike Minnow (aka Squaw Fish) and they are native to the river. They are one of the few species in the Columbia these days that were in the river before the white man started building the dams.

    I'm sure the other non-native species of fish are doing much more harm to the native fish than are the shad.
     
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  2. jwg

    jwg Active Member

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    Do shad fry serve as food for anything we care about in the rivers?

    jay
     
  3. Alosa

    Alosa Active Member

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    That's a GREAT question. We don't know.
     
  4. Slipstream

    Slipstream Active Member

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    Try this on for size. Remove head, tail, entrails and fins. Wrap shad in heavy duty aluminum foil with several pats of butter, sliced lemon and sliced onions. Salt and pepper to taste. Bake at 325 degrees until just barely done. You want the meat to be real moist. Unwrap the fish and use a fork to scrape the skin off the side of the fish. Then scrape away the dark meat along the lateral line and discard. Now the fun begins. Using the fork like a rake, scrape the meat from the rib bones and pile it into a bowl or dish. Keep raking the meat from all areas of the fish until you are finished. In about a half hour you should have a nice bowl of the best tasting fish and a BIG pile of bones. It gets easier the more you do it. It reminded me of cracking crab, a lot of work but well worth the effort. Tom
     
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  5. jwg

    jwg Active Member

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    I did some reading and best I can find is that shad fry are very abundant throughout the lower river, they provide food for predators like bass, walleye, and pike minnow, while depressing the populations of daphnia that feed out migrating salmon smolts.

    Doesn't sound good.

    But proof of the significance of this seems scarce, is my impression.

    Jay
     
  6. cmann886

    cmann886 Active Member

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    Bass seam to like a white crystal bugger---I've read that is in part because crystal buggers look like shad minnows. Sturgeon love to eat full sized shad.
     
  7. cmann886

    cmann886 Active Member

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    We gave a bunch to an oriental lady who was fishing next to us on the Snake River one year---she told us to come back the next day and she would give us some fish cakes. I have no idea how she made them but they were the best fish cakes I've ever had. I could have eaten them for days, and I am not much of a fish eating fan.
     
  8. jwg

    jwg Active Member

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    The shad have been in the river way longer than the dams have been on the river.

    It occurs to me that their impact on salmon in a damned up river, where the smolts spend months getting to sea, may be way greater than the shads impact on salmon when the river was free flowing and smolts made their journey in a matter of a week or two.

    possibly shad and other invasive species, plus dams, could be way worse than dams alone.

    Jay
     
  9. TribalDragon911

    TribalDragon911 Member

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    I've had some fun trolling for shad with a gear friend. He was doing it to use them as bait for oversized sturgeon. While that was fun I want to get one on the fly myself.
     
  10. Luke77

    Luke77 I hope she likes whitefish

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  11. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

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    The roe is surprisingly tasty. I keep some every year just to make some delicious meals with.
     
  12. Jason Hoffman

    Jason Hoffman Member

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    WP_20130521_004.jpg
    My rendition of a shad dart. I am headed to the deschutes for a three day float day. I'll be coming down HWY 97 from Washington and Crossing the columbia. I figured I would take a few casts for Shad while I am there. Any suggestions about where near 97 to fish for Shad? I was thinking about heading up to just below John Day on the oregon side, based upon a blog I read. However, I found the oregon regs confusing. I don't see shad mentioned for the section below the John day, whereas they explicitly mention them below Bonneville. Does that mean you can or cant fish them there? Also, it seems you can fish within 600 ft of the "fish entrance." I took a look at the satellite images and I see a Square of water on the south side of the dam and also a long sleuce looking thing that angles down stream. Is either one of these the fish entrance?
     

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  13. Flyborg

    Flyborg Active Member

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    That fly will fish for sure. Bright and sparse gets 'em.
     
  14. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

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    everything works better with gold hooks
     
  15. GAT

    GAT Dumbfounded

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    So far, all I've needed is these three patterns for shad.

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