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Thread: Where did all the people go? (Lake Henshaw)

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  1. #1

    Default Where did all the people go? (Lake Henshaw)

    We started fishing Lake Henshaw a month a go for Crappie. The first 2 weeks were pretty crowded down there with both shore and boat anglers. When then took the week off of April 24-25 because of wind. We then returned back to the lake May 2 to find a ghost town of anglers. Had the bite completely shut off in the week we missed I feared. That day we were the first anglers there, followed by our friend Marvelous Marvin and only 3 other anglers were there in line when they opened. (never a good sign in fishing!) So we first headed out to our Lucky Bush spot, where we had caught the majority of our fish in the two previous trips. I got bit on the first cast on a nice Crappie and promptly framed it! Racer X got bit on the inside pretty fast too, so the Crappies haven't gone anywhere! Marvelous Marvin was fishing the Rock piles and was getting bit too. We left the Lucky Bush spot with 4 farmed Crappies and 6 missed bites! We did land 4 Crappies and a very strange Catfish. (so we couldn't complain about lack of action) Once we meet up with Marvelous Marvin at the Rock piles, we started to put a decent day together on landed Crappies, plus 1 decent LMB.

    Fast forward to Sunday May 9 2021. Yes it was Mothers Day, but the Crappies are still biting! Lol Not wide open by any means, but a reasonable day of fishing with Minnows will get you about 25 bites on Crappies and Bass for the boat. Is 25 bites enough to make serious anglers want to go fishing at Lake Henshaw? The answer is Noooooooo! When we got there on Sunday May 9 2021, we were all alone at the Lake except for 2 drunk teenagers who decided to go fishing. They were pretty funny to listen too, tripping out at all the jumping Carp! Since their was nobody else fishing the lake except those 2 drunk kids. I decided to do some exploring the lake for some new spots. After fishing there 3 times this year, I kinda know what a good Crappie spot at that lake looks like. Sure enough in a new spot I never fished before, it was loaded with Crappies. I caught 4 quick ones in a row and Racer X was properly taking care of them for eating. When Disaster struck and he lost his stringer with 3 Crappies on it. That kinda screwed it up for him, as he spent part of the next hour trying to get his stringer back! We caught a few more there and moved on. By the end of the day, we had double digits on the Crappies landed and 3 or 4 LMB boated too! Racer X bite to hook ratio was terrible today. But we still took home plenty of Crappies and I caught one so big, "I had to let her go!" Lol

    Racer X texted me when he cleaned the Crappies. Most of them still had eggs inside of them! So they haven't all spawned yet and that means their still going to be in the shallow water. (which means easier to catch) If anyone is interested in catching some Crappies, Lake Henshaw isn't done yet! Send me a pm if you want to know where we caught them. They still can be caught in a boat or on shore.

    By the way, the lake is making some improvements to their rental fleet. New motors on some of the boats and a brand new Pontoon boat available for rent. (it's very nice)
    Last edited by etucker1959; 05-10-2021 at 09:11 PM.

  2. #2

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    Aren't you supposed to release the females ?

  3. #3

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    Yes, I believe you are supposed to do that. I see it in most videos I watch. Great fishing.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Theos View Post
    Aren't you supposed to release the females ?
    Here is the weird part about Crappies this whole season. At 4 different lakes, Irvine, Isabella, Cachuma and Henshaw. Most of the fish who people took home, reported they were females with eggs. I personally let a majority of my Crappies go this season. However, I'm in the minority at all lakes! I not just in the Minority, I never saw another person at any lake, "EVER" let a Crappie go except me!

    So by you asking that question, I can tell you didn't do much Crappie fishing this year! Lol

  5. #5

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    I normally never say anything about this, but I believe that is quite misguided about releasing female Crappie or any sunfish species, and keeping the males during spawning season. It is actually the male sunfish which guards the nest and is thus more necessary to having a successful batch of babies. A male sunfish is typically worn out by his parenting duties, and thus probably only spawns with one female per year, or at most a few. However, it would be best to ask a fisheries biologist about this topic. I generally don't consider gender in whether to keep fish or not, as they typically spawn in pairs, so keeping relatively equal numbers of males and females probably does the least to hurt their spawning success and avoiding a deficit in either male or female fish.

    Also, it can be difficult to determine a fish's gender just by looking at it, although there are usually tell tale signs during spawning season. We caught a couple of large Redears last month that appeared to be egg-laden females, but were actually revealed to be fat males upon cleaning them.
    Last edited by Natural Lefty; 05-10-2021 at 04:56 PM.

  6. #6

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    eTucks,

    You're like the reporter on the ground giving us the play by play.

    Glad you've been whacking the craps out there. They're definitely fun to catch when you find a nice school. I used to fish a lake down south that used to have some huge craps, and it was usually bycatch from trying to catch bass. That's how big those fish where, that they ate regular bass baits without any problems.

    Nothing like catching them on spinnerblades.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by DarkShadow View Post
    eTucks,

    You're like the reporter on the ground giving us the play by play.

    Glad you've been whacking the craps out there. They're definitely fun to catch when you find a nice school. I used to fish a lake down south that used to have some huge craps, and it was usually bycatch from trying to catch bass. That's how big those fish where, that they ate regular bass baits without any problems.

    Nothing like catching them on spinnerblades.
    Thanks for the kind words! Lol

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Riverside
    Posts
    192

    Default

    Hi Lefty, good topic and insight. I have fished Lake Perris a lot in the last few years and have not seen a redear for a few years. Was your red ear at LP?

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