Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Wormin' - Catching and Keeping Your Own

One of the simple pleasures in life is striving to be more self sufficient. I feel at times we as a society are losing this seemingly innate ability, instead being lulled into complacency. Perhaps it’s our “modern” lifestyle or perhaps something harder to define but either way, fewer and fewer people seem to be catching their own bait these days. While there is nothing wrong with buying worms from the local convenience store, those who do not at least understand how to harvest their own fishing bait are missing a vital part of the entire cycle. 
Catch Em’
As a kid, one of the most interesting parts of any fishing trip happened days before when we would grab flashlights and quietly sneak across the lawn in search of night crawlers. If it rained earlier in the day, the evening was sure to entice dozens of large crawlers to emerge from their tunnels. Contrary to popular opinion, night crawlers do not emerge from their tunnels for fear of drowning. Instead, rain and high humidity allow worms of all species to move above the ground at night without fear of drying out and dying. Above the surface, worms can move about more freely than underground to explore new territory and find food. 
While finding night crawlers is a relatively easy task, extracting them from their burrows requires practice. Night crawlers are covered in tiny bristles or setae that help them crawl as well as serving to anchor them firmly in their burrows. To pull a night crawler out of its burrow, a person must apply gentle but constant pulling pressure. Too little and the worm slips away, too much and the worm breaks in half. 
A quick search of the internet will yield many other interesting ways to catch worms, including using dish soap, car batteries and even chainsaws. While I like technology just as much as the next person, I have to say that in this case, I am just going to stick to the old methods and leave the “high tech” worm catching methods to the professionals. 

Friday, June 1, 2018

Wildlife Quiz - Brown Trout

The Brown Trout by Steve Vose
The Brown Trout (Salmo trutta), also known as German Brown Trout, Brownie, Loch Leven Trout and Saibling, exists as a game fish native to Europe but stocked throughout South America, North America, New Zealand, Australia and many other countries. The Brown Trout was first introduced into the United States in 1884 when they were released into the Baldwin River in Michigan.

Brown Trout possess light brown coloration with pronounced black spots on the back, sides and head. These black spots are ringed with a red halo. Red spots also exist all along its sides.

In Maine, Brown Trout tend to thrive in lakes, ponds and streams that would kill Brook Trout and Salmon. Because of this Inland Fisheries and Wildlife is looking at the Brown Trout to support a viable sport fishery of the future in “marginal” waters. 
Brown Trout can grow to huge sizes depending on habitat. In a small ponds, for example, a 16-inch brown is considered big, while in large lakes they can weigh 10-20 lbs depending on available feed. In Maine, the normal size for a Brown Trout is 14-20 inches and 1-2 pounds. Maine Brown Tout will occasionally reach 10 pounds.

Young Brown Trout survive on a diet of aquatic and terrestrial insects, but browns larger than 12 inches feed primarily on large prey such as other fish, crawfish and even mice. Big Brown Trout also move very little during the day light, instead preferring to hunt for food primarily at night. Scientists tracking the movements of big Brown Trout have determined that during day light hours big Brown Trout barely move from their protective hiding places but at night they will travel miles in search of food.  

Brown Trout spawn in the fall. Young Brown Trout (fry) emerge from the eggs early in the spring and immediately begin searching for food. If able to successfully avoid predators, Brown Trout may live to exceed 20 years. 

Wildlife Quiz Questions:
  1. To what other names is the Brown Trout known to be called?
  2. What is the only continent where the Brown Trout is native?
  3. When was the Brown Trout First Stocked in the United States?
  4. What is the size of an average Maine Brown Trout?
  5. What do Brown Trout larger than 12 inches primarily feed on?
  6. When do Brown Trout spawn?
  7. What are baby Brown Trout called?
  8. How long can a Brown Trout live?

Wildlife Quiz Answers:
  1. The Brown Trout is also know to be called German Brown Trout, Brownie, Loch Leven Trout and Saibling.
  2. The only continent where the Brown Trout is native is Europe.
  3. The Brown Trout was first introduced into the United States in 1884.
  4. An average Maine Brown Trout is 14-20 inches and 1-2 pounds.
  5. Browns larger than 12 inches feed primarily on large prey such as other fish, crawfish and even mice
  6. Brown Trout spawn in the Fall.
  7. Baby Brown Trout are called fry.
  8. If successful in avoiding predators, a Brown Trout can live to exceed 20 years old. 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...