Petition: To Missouri Department of Conservation and Concerned Anglers PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Thursday, 20 March 2008 23:15

Admin note: The folowing represents a petition to the Missouri Department of Conservation.  If you have similar feelings, please share your sentiments.  Contact information for the Missouri Department of Conservation can be found at:  www.mdc.mo.gov/contact/

A sizeable number of anglers want the Missouri Department of Conservation to stock reservoir-strain smallmouth bass into Truman Lake by following the practices that the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks and Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation have developed during the past 20 years. 

For example, the KDWP has developed a dynamic smallmouth bass fishery on the upper reaches of Truman’s watershed at Melvern Lake. And elsewhere in Kansas, significant smallmouth bass populations exist at Coffey County, El Dorado, Milford and Wilson reservoirs. And in 2008, the KDWP will begin stocking reservoir-strain smallmouth bass in Clinton and Perry lakes.

 

Likewise, the ODWC has created a number of fine smallmouth bass fisheries, stretching from Lake Texoma in the south to Skiatook Lake in the northeast and at several venues in between.

  

In the August-September issue of the FLW magazine, Hal Schramm, a fisheries biologist who writes for a variety of publications, wrote about the manifold benefits of the ODWC’s stocking program at Skiatook, noting that smallmouth bass were stocked in 1990 and 1991, and through natural recruitment the population grew more than threefold by 1999.

 

The Oklahoma state-record smallmouth bass is an eight-pound, three-ounce specimen that was caught by Steve McLarty on March 4, 2006 at Lake Eufaula, and some knowledgeable observers note that the limnology of Eufaula and Truman are similar.

   

In addition to the Oklahoma reservoirs, such as Eufaula, that have established smallmouth bass populations that reproduce naturally, the ODWC stocks smallmouth bass every year in a few reservoirs where the smallmouth bass are unable to recruit.  Lake Hefner is one of those. This water-supply reservoir lies within the Oklahoma City metropolitan area and receives a yearly stocking of 5,000 to 10,000 fingerling-sized smallmouth bass.

   

At Truman, the nursery areas for the largemouth bass have diminished as the reservoir has aged. Consequently, its largemouth bass recruitment has suffered, and the largemouth bass fishing has dramatically deteriorated from its heydays. This decline, however, has created a fine nursery area for smallmouth bass recruitment. All that is needed is to have the MDC stock reservoir-strain smallmouth into Truman. And because of the great successes achieved by the fisheries biologists in Kansas and Oklahoma, we suggest that MDC’s fisheries biologists consult with their Kansas and Oklahoma colleagues, such as Leonard Jirak of Hartford, Kansas, and Gene Gilliland of Norman, Oklahoma, who will explain the ins and outs of how a vibrant smallmouth bass fishery can be created at Truman.

 

Sincerely,

John, Ned and Roger Kehde