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Phil Lilley

Pothole... Heating Up?

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Didn't AR stock trout in BS at one time?

Yea they used to on the lower end but the stripers kept eating them. Used to be they took trips in pontoons at night and fished close to the dam face deep for big rainbows, I remember. I don't think they stock them anymore.

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Didn't know there were yellow perch in Missouri. We used to catch a lot of them in Minnesota while crappie fishing. Back then they were considered a trash fish and bait stealer. You would just get mad at them ant throw them back. Most were a pound or better in size. We just went by what everybody up there said and never bothered to keep any for the table.

The same used to be said about white bass... I haven't eaten Yellow Perch but I've heard they are very good.

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For years I didn't understand how folks in the north country caught "perch" when ice fishing. The "perch" around here (bluegills, sunfish, and such) go dormant in the winter and you can't hardly catch one when the water's cold - so that didn't make sense. Then a friend in Wisconsin sent me some ice fishing pictures, and I saw it's yellow perch they catch.

Last January I caught a 12" yellow perch out of Bull Shoals while crappie fishing. The guy in Wisconsin says they're real good eating, and I kept it so we could taste one. Yep, they're REAL good - long, thick, firm, white filets just like a walleye - maybe even better than the crappie I had on the same plate. I hope they do take off in Bull Shoals and get bigger, I'd like to bring some more of those home.

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I've been told by multiple sources that AGFC is still stocking Rainbows in BSL. It's very possible all those folks were mistaken though. If someone has a person on the inside at AGFC a quick call could get to the truth.

IF they are still dumping Rainbows in BSL thats a waste of money. I'm pretty sure the area that folks fished for the Rainbows by the dam is off limits post 9/11.

I might have to add Powersite to areas I've fished on BSL.

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Something about 'bows in BS has always puzzled me. In the winter when the water is low and they congregate below Powersite, their size seems to be much smaller than I believe is stocked by MO. I know at times they dump some "Silver Bullets" in, but even those seem larger.

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No telling what's in Bull Shoals. A couple of years ago I was crappie fishing a deep bluff with flooded trees down by Mincy, using a crappie jig, and I caught a 19" rainbow trout. Maybe Arkansas stocks a few big ones and the fish came up from there, or maybe it washed over Powersite dam, traveled for miles, and survived several years to grow that big - I dunno. I don't buy a trout license, so back in the lake it went.

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As a side note, the "perch" we have around here don't go dormant in the winter- they just slow down and key in on smaller baits. I use 1/100 oz pink jighead with a wax worm in the deeper brush and drop offs in the farm ponds around here. I catch a lot of fish this way, so long as I can cast to the fish or walk on the ice. The fish never stop biting, people just stop fishing.

Rob

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Small rainbows in the winter... they stock Taney with a ton of rainbows from Neosho - Federal Hatchery - and they always stock the small "silver bullets" you're seeing. They may stock a bunch down at Ozark Beach and I'm sure they come over the dam to Bull Shoals.

As far as larger trout on Bull, I'm sure they survive in cooler water in the depths of Bull- they do on Table Rock. Not well enough to be found in abundance but they do and you'll find them anywhere on the lake.

I've told this story before but will again- Rex Grady was fishing with his grandson years ago and found a bunch of schooling fish on the surface. He had his grandson throw into the mix and he hooked a white bass. Then he casted again and hooked another fish- this one was much bigger. Rex was busy with a tangle, he said, and didn't see the fish come in. His grandson said it wasn't a bass but something else. He looked- it was a 8-9 pound brown. They ended up catching several more browns surfacing on shad just like the other fish. True story. It was in late fall when the water was cooler.

I've caught trout in Swan and Beaver as well as in the lake at K Dock. It's a fluke but it happens.

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I've caught trout in Swan and Beaver as well as in the lake at K Dock. It's a fluke but it happens.

Trout used to swarm in Swan Creek early in the spring. When a rush of cold water came over Powersite in March, big schools of rainbows would crowd into the warmer water of Swan. People would line the low bridge above the mouth and catch trout off of it.

Doesn't Arkansas still raise rainbows in net pens on the lower lake?

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