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#1 ILoveFishing

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Posted 10 September 2011 - 09:25 PM

Have they been doing work on the ladder? The cam has been down for a couple months now.
Itching for some fishing.

#2 Lukin

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Posted 10 September 2011 - 11:53 PM

Does anybody know if the passage data from 2010 has been published?

#3 ILoveFishing

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Posted 12 September 2011 - 10:17 AM

couldent find anything on the internet, try sending them an email.
Itching for some fishing.

#4 matt

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Posted 12 September 2011 - 11:44 AM

Does anybody know if the passage data from 2010 has been published?


I saw the 2010 data and the numbers were very good. I can't find the report that was sent to me, but the number of shad that passed through was in the thousands, versus a couple hundred.

#5 ILoveFishing

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Posted 12 September 2011 - 12:18 PM

Thats awesome! What about stripers?
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#6 springgardener

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:01 PM

any guesses on whether or not the ladder cam will be functioning soon?

#7 matt

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:45 PM

The fish ladder camera live feed usually gets fired up late march early april.

#8 springgardener

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 01:35 PM

I do hope they get it going, I miss checking on it lol.

#9 ILoveFishing

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 10:28 PM

Yeah, they should really base the cam feed on water temps
Itching for some fishing.

#10 matt

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 10:22 AM

The camera isn't really something just for the public, and its probably expensive to run. It is primarily used for data collection purposes, and they keep it on during prime data collection periods, which are still about a month off...

The Fairmount live camera used to just be an image captured every 5-7 seconds, but the new rapid feed is awesome, looking forward to watching when THEY IN THICK!

#11 dano

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 10:13 AM

thousands of shad is crap considering how much money was spent on that thing. they should publish an estimated percentage of migrating shad (americans, hickories and herrings) that actually get through each ladder. i bet it is miniscule, and with each ladder is exponentially miniscule. they make it sound like the ladders will restore historic migrations or something, but i dont buy it. i always like to imagine what would happen to the river if the dams were all blown out. think of all the creeks that would fill up with herring! and the rowers could go find somewhere else to row if they dont like the new landscape!
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#12 dano

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 10:16 AM

think about this... i bet that a dedicated group of good shad anglers could catch and release more shad over the dam than the ladder could pass in a years time. pay them a few million dollars over time, and they'll really get the job done!
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#13 Doc Watson

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 10:37 AM

think about this... i bet that a dedicated group of good shad anglers could catch and release more shad over the dam than the ladder could pass in a years time. pay them a few million dollars over time, and they'll really get the job done!

A new job for WG ??? ;) Seriously though, in years like last spring's run, where the weather and water temps just weren't conducive to catching many fish, passive things like the ladders make the most sense. But, the real answer, as you pointed out is to blow up all the dams and let nature do what she does best. Survive and improve our planet. Maybe not with humans in mind, but we don't live here alone.

#14 dano

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 11:22 AM

A new job for WG ??? ;) Seriously though, in years like last spring's run, where the weather and water temps just weren't conducive to catching many fish, passive things like the ladders make the most sense. But, the real answer, as you pointed out is to blow up all the dams and let nature do what she does best. Survive and improve our planet. Maybe not with humans in mind, but we don't live here alone.


I am with you all the way, Doc. I was using the manual labor (WG) scenario to express my point that the ladders suck.

How cool would it be if the dams were all removed? My job is in Reading, I'd be able to shad fish at lunch time!
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#15 Mike P

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 11:24 AM

think about this... i bet that a dedicated group of good shad anglers could catch and release more shad over the dam than the ladder could pass in a years time. pay them a few million dollars over time, and they'll really get the job done!


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#16 matt

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 01:42 PM

think about this... i bet that a dedicated group of good shad anglers could catch and release more shad over the dam than the ladder could pass in a years time. pay them a few million dollars over time, and they'll really get the job done!


Thousands indeed is not that awesome. But, if the Schuylkill gets 10,000 shad, 2000+ isn't awful. The manual moving of shad was discussed heavily in the past on the forum. I don't know if ya'll remember...

Anyways, it was recommended we don't do that. The Fish commission via Qball reached out to me and told me not to do it. Plus, it would be a pain in the arse, because you can technically only keep one American per angler, meaning the fish would have to be moved one at a time.

#17 dano

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 01:56 PM

Thousands indeed is not that awesome. But, if the Schuylkill gets 10,000 shad, 2000+ isn't awful. The manual moving of shad was discussed heavily in the past on the forum. I don't know if ya'll remember...

Anyways, it was recommended we don't do that. The Fish commission via Qball reached out to me and told me not to do it. Plus, it would be a pain in the arse, because you can technically only keep one American per angler, meaning the fish would have to be moved one at a time.


i gotta believe that WAY more than 10,000 shad migrate up the skuke every year. WAYYYYY more. i dont know the science, but thats just a guess. and i am just thinkin american shad. hickory shad very well might out number americans these days. plus, theres still gotta be alot of herring running up the river. alewives and blackbellies! i am not by any means suggesting that the numbers are healthy, but they are more than you would think. take the dams away, and the numbers would improve as more and better spawning habitat opens up.
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#18 matt

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 04:38 PM

i gotta believe that WAY more than 10,000 shad migrate up the skuke every year. WAYYYYY more. i dont know the science, but thats just a guess. and i am just thinkin american shad. hickory shad very well might out number americans these days. plus, theres still gotta be alot of herring running up the river. alewives and blackbellies! i am not by any means suggesting that the numbers are healthy, but they are more than you would think. take the dams away, and the numbers would improve as more and better spawning habitat opens up.


I definitely agree. Unfortunately, that dam ain't coming down anytime soon.

#19 Lukin

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 11:28 PM

I know some history on the subject, I'll bore you with it...

The same exact senerio being talked about on this post was actually being played out back in the early 1700's. Only difference is there was a lot more at stake cause the shad run impacted peoples lives on a much larger scale.

Its been an ongoing discussion for 300+ years starting back when William Penn "purchased" the banks and valleys of the Skuke off the Lenape back in the late 1600's. (the deal was actually sealed with a good old bong hit by the way!)

Back then the Schuylkill was surrounded by lush valleys of ancient forest and free roaming wildlife throughout. Some of the early descriptions of the area are amazing by the way, such a contrast on what it has become today. Seemed like a total paradise.

Anyways by the early 1700's the "whiteman" had erected shitloads of fish jams and "racks" throughout the span of the Skuke up from Philly into what is now modern day Montgomery County.

The racks were basically walls of rocks piled underwater that were used as pens to corral shad and rockfish for harvest during their annual migration up the Skuke. The "shoremen" would either erect these racks in strategic places along the river or use their horses to burst into the river and frighten the shad into swimming over the rack where they would then be trapped for harvest.

So the first act regarding these dams came into play back in 1688. It supposedly outlawed the construction of racks and fishing dams along the Schuylkill but apparently people didn't want to listen. Some say it was because the shad were such a great food resource but its most likely because there were no Wegmans back then.

It wasn't for another 40 or so contentious years later that another bill was officially passed and the actual process of removing all dams and racks had finally commenced.

The work wasn't done out of conservational concerns though, it was strictly for navigational purposes.

The goal was to improve commerce back and forth from Philly because the obstructions in the river were basically sinking boats and causing all kinds of problems. People were seriously getting f#ed up and some even lost their lives trying to navigate over the racks that were hiding below the waters surface.

Long story short, the removal of the dams and racks caused a long and lingering war between the shoremen and the navigators which lasted for many years to come. People were hurt and livelihoods were lost, but by the end of 1738 the navigators got their way and the Skuke would soon be free of any obstructions.

The end result was that the shad and other migratory fish were now free to navigate the waters of the Skuke and its tribs uninterrupted for the next 80 or so years until fairmount Dam was constructed.

And that was then, this is now.
I bet one day the dams will be either breached or removed. Not in our generation though.

#20 dano

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 03:10 PM

good stuff, Lukin.


down with the dams!
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