View Full Version : VHS VIrus and how it will hurt the fisherman

Big Catch Bait
12-11-2006, 03:52 PM
Wondering if the general public(fisherman)are aware that NYS Conservation has put an order preventing the commercial catching of emerald shiners in NYS waters.This means they will not be available for purchase in any bait selling stores!! [/b]

12-11-2006, 05:33 PM

12-11-2006, 09:29 PM
Will it be legal to buy them in PA and transport them across the state line?

Bryan Hoffner
12-12-2006, 06:06 AM
Can't buy them in PA either. We were put under the restriction a while ago.
That's why I have found a few more secret bait holes that shouldn't freeze this winter. I just hope the fur trappers do their part and keep the muskrat and mink out of the holes.

Old School Dave
12-12-2006, 08:36 AM
Out of curiosity, why are shiners the go to minnow in your area? Shiners are unheard of here in my neck of the woods other than their use up in Lake Erie for perch.
Here its the fathead minnow that is in every bait shop with chubs and sucker minnows,used from ice on and all through the warmer months.
My experience with the fathead is its a hardy minnow that you can really abuse on the hook while casting a jig/minnow combo and through the ice they seem to never die dead sticking or jigging . Just one hardy minnow that catches fish.

Bryan Hoffner
12-12-2006, 11:23 AM
Around here the fathead minnow does pretty much nothing when it comes to catching fish. I personally will stay home or fish artifical bait before I'll use them. they rate right up there for catching eyes with the golden shiner, they just don't do it. yes you will catch a few but .....
Suckers and creek chubs seem to do well but in some situations when the eyes seem a little more finnicky they will pounce on a shiner more willingly. The allegheny river, Conewango creek, and Kinzua all have healthy shiner populations in them. I don't know if this is part of the shiner equation that I run into year after year. yes there are other food sources that are also prodominant in our area as is with all bodies of water but overall the shiners ends up being the prefered bait because of past proven effectiveness.
I have had falls that the chub and suckers have well out fished the common and emerald shiners. Why I don't know, maybe there was a big sucker hatch or stocking that year on the zoo.

anyways I've already noticed the increased minnow trapping in our area. I've already walked away from the local haunts and am now traveling further than I have ever had to.

Old School Dave
12-12-2006, 01:07 PM
I know now its the difference of the make up of our lakes and streams. Basically all our lakes are resevoirs that have been dug out of flat farmlands,bogs. We have no cold water streams or rivers.
The fathead is a fish catching machine over here,just have to match the size of minnow to what their feeding on. Creek minnows are also a good producer with the guys fishing them doing their own seining and trapping.

carl milks
12-14-2006, 12:02 AM
I agree with Bryan on fatheads, except one thing: "you can catch a few walleyes on them.."- I've NEVER caught an 'eye on fatheads. Tried them numerous times (only thing avail)-nothing. Zoo 'eyes just don't eat them. I do fine on creek bait, but prefer the shiners.

12-14-2006, 12:46 PM
The new regulations make a lot more changes. You cannot have in your possession more than 100 minnows. Forget salted minnows for trout. Any bait being brought in from out of state must go through a gauntlet of testing for diseases, many not even known to be carried by that specific fish, driving the prices up and availability down.
The federal regulations already passed are mighty strict, but when NY is done passing additional regs minnows will probably be a thing of the past. The same rules will also apply for game fish and ornamentals(such as koi) so expect to see prices jump on these, if you can even find them.

Mighty Mike
12-15-2006, 11:50 AM
What is this virus. Emeralds have been around forever. Why all the sudden a problem. Emeralds are in Kinzua and Chautauqua. Havew been for a long time. Feel real bad for all the bait shops. This has got to hurt them.


12-15-2006, 05:02 PM
I also will stay home or go artificial before using fatheads or golden shiners in this neck of the woods. A few years back I traveled to Mosquito lake in Ohio to pre-fish for a walleye tourney with a freind that was fishing the tourney the next weekend. I was baffled as to why no bait store there had anything but fatheads. We used them and caught a couple small eyes and a couple crappies. The next time I went to Mosquito I took emeralds and did much better than I did with the fatheads.

Turkey Fan
12-15-2006, 06:11 PM
Has anybody here EVER caught anything with a golden shiner?

Grizzly Gary
12-15-2006, 07:40 PM
I have caught a few small eyes on Golden Shiners. They were few & far between. Goldens have not been very productive to say the least.

I also feel bad for Pages, Happy Hooker and Hogans Hut. These folks are getting screwed as far as I see it. As stated above Emeralds have been in Kinzua & Chautauqua for quite some time. Apparently this virus (VHS) has been around for a long time. Why all of a sudden is it a problem? Am I missing something?

Grizzly Gary

Old School Dave
12-15-2006, 08:48 PM
Have been fishing Mosquito for 50+ years now and and I have caught too many eyes to remember out of that lake,using fatheads. Just got to match the size to what they are feeding on. The fathead and gizzard shad are the walleye and crappies main diet in that lake,the shad being stocked originally when the lake was made and the fat head a native minnow to Mosquito Creek the original water that was dammed.
You probably noticed the boys from the WRWA use them exclusively and do good with them.

12-15-2006, 10:50 PM
I am going to push Mosquito next year and is this lake like pymie ? Minnows are great till about the end of April than the lake seems to do better with night crawlers or leeches. Pymie is on the down side right now.

01-17-2007, 12:49 PM
Mr Ed posted this on the tournament thread but I wanted to let everyone know the newset things that are happening here, right at Lake Erie.......

Mr Ed's words:

Was to a seminal last nite that was put on by the fish and game,. It was all about the VHS that in in the Great Lakes water shed. It was targeted to the "bait shops" and the taking of targeted fish that spread the virus. They spoke a lot of "doom and Gloom". They even mentioned that it could "wipe-out" certain species in smaller bodies of water if this virus is spread. Don't get me wrong.... they also had some positive things to say too. I guess there is a Commisioners meeting in the near future to draft regulations for this Virus. After drafting, it goes to "public Input". If these regulations are drafted and accepted by the Commission, the Commission can put it into effect "immediatly" . This is such an immediate DANGER that they have the power to enact WITHOUT publishing.
If they can PROVE that someone transported fish(from target virus areas) and were aquired from Lake Erie Water shed and transported elsewhere....... a flat fine of several hundred dollars could be levied PLUS up-to $200 per fish (MINNMOW).
This virus can be spread in many ways that CAN NOT be addresed, so they are trying to handle the highest priority (transport of fish from Erie water shed). I personally think that they are on the right track.
Many of the BIG SHOTS were there to include the State Vet, State Biologists, Sea Grant People, Sons of Lake Erie Reps, Sam Concella and many more. About 8 people from the STATE were there plus the Fish and Game people.
They said that future seminars for sportsman were in the works and would happen in the coming months.

It sounds like this could pe a serious problem that we ALL have to address and handle as sportsman. It is not only for the BAIT DEALERS.

Gary, maybe a good topic for your show....

If I hear anything more, I will post.


01-17-2007, 12:59 PM
I want to add that the representatives that were there tried to explain that they are merely trying to decrease the chances of spreading the VHS virus to the inland waters and made several "suggestions" and handed out several pages of information with facts and then handouts to be presented at local baitshops to the anglers.
I will go back over notes and post the websites that the info can be found on the web. The meeting mentioned above will have a Open Forum for public review. I will also try to get that website to you too.
VHS is a severe virus and should be of great concern for ALL anglers.