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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I caught this fat ass last saturday, my first one. I thought I had a log at first until my line started swimming upstream. It saved the day as my only other fish was a nice 16 inch bow that got foul hooked in the tail on the stonefly dropper while going after the streamer it was attached to.

Does anyone know when these guys spawn?
 

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White Suckers usually spawn in spring/early summer, although I have seen some spawn as late as August. My biggest sucker was caught on a nymph that measure just over 20 inches, caught him while fishing for brown trout.
Sucker spawns are amazing, tons of fish crammed into a tight area.

~Ryan
 

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Man, that's an awesome fish. I've caught whitefish on the Yakima, but never to true native suckerfish! I'll bet you got 'em on a nymph. If you got him to move to take a streamer, then man, your not only a blessed angler-- your like, a sucker aphrodisiac!

-Sparse

Streams are made for the wise man to contemplate and fools to pass by.
(Sir Izaak Walton)
 

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On the Yak two weeks ago we caught two in one day, the first took a stonefly nymph, and the second one took a streamer that my buddy was swinging. Here is a photo of the first one, the second was much bigger, but certainly not as big as scottr's fish! I also caught one a month ago that I measured at 24", that's three this month! Seems to be a few of them around...

worldanglr

http://www.washingtonflyfishing.com/dc/user_files/354.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
MacRowdy.

A few years ago I may have done that but I have since learned to appreciate fish like this. Suckers are a native species and play an important role in the eco-system. In fact part of my reasoning for posting this photo was to find out when these fish spawn as I know trout will eagerly eat sucker eggs just as they do with salmon. Yes suckers eat trout eggs but that is part of the symbiotic releationship these fish have in a river.

Edit: I did some research and think this is either a Mountain Sucker or Longnose Sucker, both native fish. Here is a link that discusses these fish and mentions the role they play in trout fisheries.

http://www.fisheries.org/idaho/fishes_of_idaho.htm

I know that suckers were also a very important food fish for the native americans of the great basin.

I have also heard they are a distant relative on the steelhead although I do not have documentation to back that up.

I did consider bonking this fish on the head to see if I could entice a big bald eagle in the tree above me to fly down and eat it. }(
 

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Scott,
I agree with you on the not-bonking. It's my opinion that native fish, such as suckers and even pikeminnows, belong in the river and will not appreciably affect the trout population. In fact, trout feed on sucker eggs and fry, so they may even have a beneficial effect. The sucker you caught could have been a longnose(max reported size 25", 7lbs), but mountain suckers rarely get above 10". It could also have been a largescale (max reported size 24", 7lbs) or possibly a bridgelip sucker (max reported size of 17"). The best way to tell them apart is by looking at their mouths. Suckers are generally spring spawners, and usually begin to spawn when the water begins to warm up. They broadcast spawn in riffles, and some populations spawn at night. Thats my lesson for the day. back to drinking :beer1
LDR
 

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Well let me tell ya what I know about suckers and chubs and redhorse and sqawfish etc...

On Henry's Fork lot's of folks fish with an amboninable and illegal thing called: "Canned Corn". They chum with it and then use it for bait. Chubbs and suckers and redhorse and sqaws and all of thier aunts uncles and cousins eat this and are capable of digesting it. They flock from miles around. Trout find these tasty morsels of sweet corn irresistable. However,they are unable to digest them and since there are no trout Dr.s who offer free colonics they plug up, bleed from the anus and die.

So at the risk of being thrown into trash fish jail we (the idaho chapter of team rugged) abide by the Idaho state law (which may or may not exist) stating that it is illegal to throw back these trash fish. So back in the old school days we started a club called the "Fish Biters Club". To be initiated you have to bite the head off of a trash fish in the company of two witnesses or there must be video footage.

However, in light of the vision that I have now recieved from scottr I think I am going to embrace these cousins of the steelhead and treat them with utmost respect.

Thank you!

Mac
 
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Now you need to catch the following:

1. Shad
2. Carp
3. Whitefish
4. PCB's or acceptable medical waste from Portland's Columbia Slough.

It's called the "SUCKER SLAM." Do it all in one day and you win a $10 gift certificate to Walmart.:p
 

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Just an Old Man
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I used to know it all---but now that I'm older I seem to forget it all.

We used to catch them out of the S/Fork Stilly in the summer time on garden hackle(worms) They would come in like an old log. No fight at all and no we didn't touch them.Loooong nooose pliers did the unhooking. About 5 to 7 lbs.

Jim
 

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Old sucker stories are fun to tell. When I was a kid, I was fishing the North Platte in Wyoming just above Pathfinder Reservoir. About 2 or 3 hundred red horse suckers were spawning in this riffle and it was April or May I think. I had a 21/2" red and silver daredevil on and I started to snag them. After getting three or four (no fight), I left them alone. But it was amazing to see something like that; it was just one of those unforgettable moments with which nature so beautifully abounds.:thumb
 

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RiverFishing

So they call this the Yakima bonefish? (LOL) Evidently they show up in eastern Washington also, as this looks and sizes up like one I caught in the Touchet on a nymph three weekends ago. To tell the truth, it started off feeling like it might be my first steelie on the fly, and it did put up a decent fight. First time it bellied up yellow, though, my heart sank.
Didn't kill it though. And thanks to these postings I'm even able to acknowledge it happened without blushing as I speak of it.
Back east we used to catch a cousin of these locally referred to as "hornyheads." The bigger ones (12 inches or more) developed these fleshy, pointy bumps across the forehead. Hated to have to handle them, probably for the same reason some others have suggested. They would even croak as you lifted them out of the water...creepy.
I also once saw a "cluster-spawn" in the shallows of a SW Virginia lake very similar to one described in the BobLawless post.
Thanks for letting me share...

Mike :hmmm
 
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