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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Around this part of the country ( Iowa ) the larger Wipers are caught from the Des Moines river. The last two state records came from this river.
A member of our local fishing club ( www.centraliowaanglers.com ) caught a whopper last year from this river. > 32.5" 18lb12oz <

It was slightly smaller than our state record...but a NICE fish ..for sure !

My question is this (You 'all knew I had a question...:smile: )
Why are the wipers caught from the river larger than the ones that come from the reservoir that's above the river ??
 

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Ah. a board with some local wiper info. cool_blue.gif

Toothfish Heres a pick of Youa Louva who holds the Iowa record from the river.
Im sure you have seen it before.

 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes! I have seen this photo . Every year someone gets a big one out of this river below the dam . I have some theories on why these river wipers are so much bigger than the lake has. I wondered if there are other areas in the country that see the same scenario ?
 

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Here's a somewhat experienced, if not educated guess:
Stripers, wipers, other predator fish mass below the dams in the tailraces, because that's where the baitfish seem to mass.
Just because it's as far as they can go upstream during spawn, more oxygen, more micro-organisms for shad to eat?
I'd think the concentration of fish makes catching a big'n more probable.
Nothing scientific, but fish up against the wall and cornered are easier to catch!
LMJeff
 

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Here's a somewhat experienced, if not educated guess:
Stripers, wipers, other predator fish mass below the dams in the tailraces, because that's where the baitfish seem to mass.
Just because it's as far as they can go upstream during spawn, more oxygen, more micro-organisms for shad to eat?
I'd think the concentration of fish makes catching a big'n more probable.
Nothing scientific, but fish up against the wall and cornered are easier to catch!
LMJeff
i think you nailed it, Jeff!...hope to prove that point in about 6 weeks ;)
 

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I think Jeff is probably right on the money. Now that you mention it, the last two Indiana record wipers came out of the Tippicanoe River below the dam on Lake Freeman or Schaffer--I never can keep the two apart.

I spend the largest part of last year just trying to get a reservoir wiper over ten pounds; I got an 8.5 pounder, but that was as big as it got. I think, in addtion to Jeff's astute observations, I would add that being a wiper in a lake is a lot more work. In the rivers the wipers seem to be loners. In lakes they travel in gangs and appear to work together in their quest for food. Even the small ones in lakes travel in packs. One breaks the surface and they all break the surface. It's not like below the dams where they seem to be able to just wait and the food comes to them.
 

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Here on the Tn river they do go to Pickwick Dam starting in march.
But the best ones are around the Islands down river .

Looking forward to wearing them out this year. Even have plans to try out a 9 wt Fly rod on them. With the hand tied flys I have been working on.
Pete
 

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i think you nailed it, Jeff!...hope to prove that point in about 6 weeks ;)
I see you have one picture of a nice one. That was caught in March.
Do you remember what you were or how you were fishing when you were catching them that early?
Most times here at Pickwick its late march. Sure would love to start out early.

Have plans to try planner boards and see what I can get in a week or so.

Pete
 

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I see you have one picture of a nice one. That was caught in March.
Do you remember what you were or how you were fishing when you were catching them that early?
Most times here at Pickwick its late march. Sure would love to start out early.

Have plans to try planner boards and see what I can get in a week or so.

Pete
we were fishing at Wilson dam with jigs...i caught that one on a 1.5 oz white hyper striper bucktail w/plastic swimbait trailer.
if you decide to fish the dam in early spring, be veeeery careful...it's mighty shallow during winter pool and there's a LOT of foot eating rocks just under the surface.(i personally won't fish there that early unless TVA is generating AND the big wheels are turning).
i'll shoot you a p.m. with more detail.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
ALL GREAT INPUT !!!
A couple of things touched on about gangs on the lake and singles in the river.
I feel that these fish will develop their own feeding techniques by the environment they live in ..(probably true with all species) The river fish has less area to travel for food and probably less effort to feed = larger fish ! Also in our area there are swarms of fishermen along the river banks at certain times of the year ...increasing the odds of one being caught.

Just some thoughts ...sorry for rambling.:sleepy1:
 

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toothfish said:
Why are the wipers caught from the river larger than the ones that come from the reservoir that's above the river
Heres one factor that probably plays into the equation. It's likely that more fingerlings and fry are stocked in the impoundments and as the fish get larger their migration instincts kick in and the larger ones spill over the dams into the rivers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
OK ! That starts another discussion : Do hybrids have migrating instincts ? Does that instinct take the fish over the dam or up the river ?
Some (probably MANY) make it over the dam. Is it just by accident or instintive.

Probably one of those "who cares" things. But makes for a good discussion.
 

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I'm really guessing, but they stock East Fork Lake here in SW Ohio.
The hybrids coming through the dam go down the East Fork of the Little Miami River, into the Little Miami River, into the Ohio River, and back. And, the wipers stocked in Ohio River may also come up these same rivers.
My point: like most/all migratory creatures, they will go back to where they originated, spawning or not. So, I'm guessing, hybrids really do want to spawn, even though it's blanks. ( I have a vascectomy to prove the point).
So they'll go upstream to spawn, and also to follow the shad, find shad, find wipers.
LMJ
 

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Once again, I think Jeff's right. Wipers do partake in a false spawn, but I don't thing they do so en masse. If you look up the listing of threads, you'll see one for Indiana wiper tracking. Take a look at their patterns for March 2006. If I remember correctly, the INDNR captured something like 53 fish, tagged them, then tracked them. A couple ( I don't remember if it was one or two) immediately managed to escape over the dam and they pretty much hung out at the base of the dam from then on. The others seemed to somewhat go up the lake to the feeder creeks and hang for a time, then work their way back down into the main body of water. It is as if they are a lost generation traveling in circles with no real Eden to get back to, but all the while knowing there is an Eden somewhere. That's a lot of metaphorical mixings to swallow all at once, but I'm sure you get the idea.
 

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It is as if they are a lost generation traveling in circles with no real Eden to get back to, but all the while knowing there is an Eden somewhere. That's a lot of metaphorical mixings to swallow all at once, but I'm sure you get the idea.
I can think of what is the most apparent to me, Slowretrieve: You just described Mankind, (I've seen a signature somewhere: "Some fishermen realize it's not the fish they are after") we're all seeking "Something", that Eden we were kicked out of due to sin. Eden represents utopia, perfection, living in the Loving Protective Presence of God without shame. And I believe we all miss that and long for it. Consider why Jesus would tell Peter, James and John, among other Fishermen: I will make you Fishers of Men.

But, back to wipers, God made them that way, to seek home base, to reproduce, to multiply and be fruitful! :)
God Bless,
LMJeff
 

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Actually, you can trace the origins of the wiper to Dr. Robert E. Stevens, 1965, and the Moncks Corner Striped Bass Fishery. Isn't that a hoot, Moncks Corner? He made the wiper and shipped it to a guy on Cherokee Lake, TN whire it was first introduced on Easter Day, 1965. It does have Biblical proportions written all over it, but the fish itself is manmade, although I will gleefully credit God with the pattern. That's one thing I love about wipers; if you need more, you just make them.
 

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Moncks Corner! :)
As for those wipers hanging out at the base of the dam, that makes sense, if you think about it.
They "originated" in the lake, where they were stocked.
The Lake is imprinted as where they want, have to get back to.
So they hang out at the base of the dam, as close and possible to the "lake".
???
Just the way I think.
 
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