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Monday, February 08, 2016

Big Fish!

Look what Kevin Johnson pulled out of the pond Sunday!  It must have been a chore just getting him up through the hole in the ice.  Here's what Kevin wrote:

 Hi Jane,
  Thought I would send you a picture of the Northern Pike I caught yesterday on Joe's - 34" long. A number of years ago (12 maybe??) I caught the first confirmed/known pike in Joe's pond (they were not supposed to be in the lake) and now, as you can see, they are doing quite well (not good news for trout fisherman, as they can grow to over 40" long and eat trout 10"-20" long.   Kevin

I remember when Kevin caught one years ago and his being very concerned that they were in the pond.  One has to wonder how they got here - although years ago, in about 1862, in Hemenway's Gazetteer there was this:

Joe’s Pond covers about 1,000 acres, and was once famed in the abundance and superior quality of its trout; but now, alas! Containing only the voracious pike, sucker, and other of this ilk.  Some 25 or 30 years ago, some very public-spirited and benevolently-minded scamp transported a quantity of these destroyers from afar into Lyford’s Pond, whose waters connect with Joe’s Pond, and has been rewarded ever since with the curses of every decent man in the country.
As early as 1899, Joe's Pond was stocked with walleyed pike.  There were only 40 of them that year, but more were dumped into the pond in 1900.  In 1920 there was a report that Mrs. Wesley Hoffman, of Barre, caught a 3 lb. pike here.  I'm guessing that was a walleyed.

The two pikes are very different.  The northern, if I understand correctly, looks something like a large pickerel and will eat anything that swims, including the walleye; the walleye looks more like a perch and feeds on minnows, and other small fish.
I have been told northern pikes are good eating, but they have lots of bones, so you need to know how to fillet them correctly. 

Good catch, Kevin.  Thanks for the picture. 

We are eagerly (some of us) awaiting snow later today.  We have been promised some measurable snow throughout this week and some pretty cold weather, compared to what we've become used to.  However, I don't think the snow we'll be getting will be enough to make a difference for the snowmobile crowd; it's a case of too little to late.  The ski areas may be ok since they have made snow whenever they could and most managed to have at least a few trails open.  Perhaps February and March will prove to be our real winter - better late than never, I suppose.

I walked today, but it was hazardous climbing Jamie and Marie's icy driveway and even worse coming back down.  Yesterday it was warm enough that my spikes took hold very well, but today it was more like walking on little skates.  Tomorrow could be worse because the snow will cover the ice so I won't be able to see it, and it will pack the spikes so they won't take hold.  I may opt to walk the level road tomorrow.  The snow will put an end to the dust storm we get from the frozen, dry road every time a vehicle goes by, and that will be a relief.  I just heard the official forecast on the scanner - 3 to 6 inches of snow over the next three days.

1 comment:

Jack LaGue said...

As I recall Joe's Pond is only 396 acres. i wonder how they got 1,000 acres.