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Channel Cat Reproduction

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According to F+W  Channel Cats only reproduce in the Delaware and Raritan River Systems. I have however found them in at least six impoundments where I believe they are reproducing. These bodies  of water have never been stocked by the State and while catching bait I have often run into fingerling Channels. These waters must of been privately stocked years ago. Some now hold huge cats ! Anyone else believe they know of waters that have reproducing Channel Cats?

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That does not seem correct.    Seems to me quite a few lakes have healthy channel cat reproduction. 

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20 minutes ago, JHbowhunter said:

That does not seem correct.    Seems to me quite a few lakes have healthy channel cat reproduction. 

I agree but this is from F+W .

Introduced initially in the early 1900s, channel catfish were only stocked in handful of locations by the late 70s. They are now stocked in over 90 waterbodies. Because of their strict spawning requirements channel catfish only reproduce in the Delaware & Raritan Rivers and Union Lake.

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So not in Lake Hopatcong?   I know a private lake I fish that sure seems to have healthy reproduction.  Definitely spawning in Paulinskill river as well. 

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Posted (edited)

Jack probably has been eating their row along with his shad row :laughing:...:vomit:. That's probably the problem . More poached eggs

Edited by Buck154
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Yeah I have to call bs on that one, rv is filled with them

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16 hours ago, FLDBRED-BDC said:

According to F+W  Channel Cats only reproduce in the Delaware and Raritan River Systems. I have however found them in at least six impoundments where I believe they are reproducing. These bodies  of water have never been stocked by the State and while catching bait I have often run into fingerling Channels. These waters must of been privately stocked years ago. Some now hold huge cats ! Anyone else believe they know of waters that have reproducing Channel Cats?

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I had this exact conversation with Division biologists about 17 months ago, all of whom I spoke with admit they have no idea of how many lakes and ponds stocked legally or illegally now have naturally reproducing channel cats.  I started catching monsters through the ice on a small private lake I grew up in.  Folks on that lake know that one of the lakefront homeowners stocked without a permit channel cats maybe 20 years ago now, and apparently only once.  He has long since moved away and nobody is still stocking them, but they are now more numerous than the largemouth bass that used to be top predator there.  So natural reproduction is occurring there now as a result.  

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I agree ,the State needs to rethink this one! I know the Millstone has em of all sizes, heck it dumps into the Raritan so why wouldn't it .

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FW and any biologist should know that all Fish eggs are spread by ducks and any bird that goes in water.  Eggs attach to the birds, the birds fly and land elsewhere, the eggs fall off.  

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9 minutes ago, nickmarch said:

FW and any biologist should know that all Fish eggs are spread by ducks and any bird that goes in water.  Eggs attach to the birds, the birds fly and land elsewhere, the eggs fall off.  

Not sure where you are going with that?  The question at hand is if channel cats spawn in waters other than those listed by the Division.  Many of us have observed tons of channel cats in waters not supposed to have been stocked with them, so either someone is continuously stocking them into lots of waterbodies or channels were introduced once and now are naturally reproducing in those waters.  From a fish biology standpoint, not all fish spawn in all waters by any means.  Certain conditions must be met for fish to spawn successfully.  I believe we are seeing a lot of natural reproduction in waters they were released to either legally or without the required fish stocking permit.   

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17 minutes ago, Bucksnbows said:

Many of us have observed tons of channel cats in waters not supposed to have been stocked with them, so either someone is continuously stocking them into lots of waterbodies or channels were introduced once and now are naturally reproducing in those waters

Or the eggs are being deposited by ducks and other birds.

NJ also stocks catfish in numerous waterways.

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1 hour ago, nickmarch said:

Or the eggs are being deposited by ducks and other birds.

NJ also stocks catfish in numerous waterways.

ok you need to understand how channel catfish spawn to see the absurdity of that claim - not talking about other fish but specifically the channel catfish.  Duck would really have to go well out of its way where no duck  would ever go to come in contact with these eggs. 

 

 

Spawning

Channel catfish spawn when the water temperature is between 75° and 85° F (23° to 30° C) with about 80° F (27° C) being optimum. Wild populations of catfish may spawn as early as late February or as late as August depending on the location. The length and dates of the spawning season vary from year to year depending on the weather and area, but peak spawning time in Mississippi usually occurs in May. Channel catfish are cavity spawners and will spawn only in secluded, semi-dark areas. In natural waters male catfish will build a nest in holes in the banks, undercut banks, hollow logs, logjams, or rocks. It is this behavior that necessitates the use of spawning containers in order to successfully spawn channel catfish in commercial ponds.

The male selects and prepares the nest by fanning out as much mud and debris as possible. He will then defend this location against any intruder until spawning is completed and the fry leave the nest. The female is attracted to the nest and spawning occurs within the nest with eggs being laid in a gelatinous mass on the bottom. After the eggs are laid, the male takes over and cares for the eggs by constantly fanning them with his fins to provide aeration and to remove waste products given off by the developing eggs.

Females spawn only once a year, producing about 3,000 to 4,000 eggs per pound of body weight, while the males may spawn more than once. In wild populations, males seldom spawn more than once a year, but in hatcheries where the eggs are removed from the spawning container soon after being laid, males may spawn 3 or 4 times; and there is a record of one male spawning nine females in one season. Channel catfish usually become sexually mature at 3 years of age, although some may spawn when 2 years old. In wild populations they may not spawn until after the age of 5 years.

Channel catfish weighing as little as 3/4 of a pound may spawn if old enough, whereas farm-raised catfish usually weigh in excess of 2 pounds when they spawn. After the eggs are laid they will usually hatch in 5 to 10 days depending on water temperature. At 78° F (26° C) the eggs will hatch in about 8 days. For each 2° F (1° C) rise in temperature above 78° F, subtract 1 day, and for each 2° F (1° C) fall in temperature below 78° F, add 1 day to get the approximate length of time required for hatching. Water temperatures below 65° F (18° C) and above 85° F (30° C) will reduce hatching success. Newly hatched fry have a large yolk sac which contains the nourishment they need for the next 2 to 5 days until they are fully developed and are ready to start feeding. After the yolk sac is absorbed, the fry take on their typical dark color and will begin to swim-up looking for food. At first swim-up fry will gulp air to fill their swim bladders which helps them maintain and regulate their buoyancy.

 

 

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9 minutes ago, JHbowhunter said:

ok you need to understand how channel catfish spawn to see the absurdity of that claim - not talking about other fish but specifically the channel catfish.  Duck would really have to go well out of its way where no duck  would ever go to come in contact with these eggs. 

I grew up on the pennsauken creek.  I regularly put corn and bird feed in the creek and have seen numerous types of ducks dive deep for the feed from our dock.  I've also caught a ton of catfish in the creek.  To think that a duck can not spread the eggs is absurd.  I've seen ducks and snapping turtles with eggs on them.  The turtles eat the eggs.  No catfish is going to ward off a duck or a turtle.  They both dislodge eggs!

I read the article that you copied and pasted.  It's absurd to think that the general public would know what you copied and pasted and assume that would make it absurd to have eggs distributed by ducks.

https://thefishsite.com/articles/channel-catfish-life-history-and-biology

 

 

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Years ago there was a farm in Hunterdon County that we pheasant hunted on. The farm had a 5 acre pond that had huge Channel Cats . The farmer had a few dozen of  what looked liked 55 gallon drums placed in the pond ,he said it was for the catfish to spawn in. I caught a nine pound catfish out of that pond.

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On 6/25/2020 at 7:24 AM, Buck154 said:

Jack probably has been eating their row along with his shad row :laughing:...:vomit:. That's probably the problem . More poached eggs

Don't knock it till you try it Johnboy :cook2:

 Shad row. Yummmmmmy! Legit. 

 

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