SALMON FEEDING

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tamiron
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SALMON FEEDING

Post by tamiron »

Here's one for the VT Fish & Game.

How long before spawning do salmon stop feeding?
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tamiron
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Re: SALMON FEEDING

Post by tamiron »

With the help of Popster, I have contacted VTFG and Ellen Marsdale to relay this question and ask them to direct it to someone else, if they can't answer
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nhjim
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Re: SALMON FEEDING

Post by nhjim »

don't believe atlantics stop feeding like kings and the other salmon. there just running the rivers to spawn and come back not spawn and die. curious to see the answer though.

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tamiron
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Re: SALMON FEEDING

Post by tamiron »

Here are the responses that I have received so far:
SALMON FEEDING
Post by tamiron » Sat Jul 25, 2020 5:17 pm
Here's one for the VT Fish & Game.

How long before spawning do salmon stop feeding?

Can you answer this? If not can you please forward it to someone who can?

On Wed, Jul 29, 2020 at 9:49 AM Pientka, Bernie <Bernie.Pientka@vermont.gov> wrote:
Hello Jim,

Honestly I am not sure on Landlocked Atlantic salmon. I know the literature tends to suggest sea-run Atlantic salmon stopping feeding when they enter fresh water. Someone could speculate that maybe when landlocked start their spawning run they may stop feeding. We have never done extensive seasonal diet work on them.

An additional note on Champlain is we do find some adult landlocked salmon in open water areas of the Lake during the fall which are not showing any signs of spawning development. I suspect these individual are still feeding as we cannot externally identify sex when we handle the fish. Almost like some portion of the population may not spawn each year.

Sorry I wish I had more of an answer.

Bernie


Bernie Pientka
Fisheries Biologist
Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department
111 West Street
Essex Junction, VT 05452
(802) 879-5698 Office
Bernie:
Basically, I was curious about the "urban legend" that Atlantics could not be caught in Champlain after the first of August.
All non-spawning Atlantics I'm sure do not stop feeding. Given nature's way of staggering the runs of most fish to prevent the catastrophe that could occur, if they all spawned at the same time and that the weather was exceptionally bad also ... it is unlikely that they all stop feeding at the same time.


May I include your response above on the Champlain United forum?
Jim Martino
Jim,

No problem with posting my comments.

I would also add that as we get into August typically the young of the year (spawned that year) smelt and alewife are usually abundance and are big enough to be targeted by salmon. An alternative option could be their food supply is relatively abundant and easy to catch which makes catching salmon more difficult on the anglers.

Also, the timing (1st of August) is a little off from Spawning. We don’t even open the Hatchery Brook return trap until Sept 15th. Below is a graph of salmon return numbers from 2019. The salmon run didn’t really start up until October.
Annotation 2020-07-30 215538.jpg
Annotation 2020-07-30 215538.jpg (21.51 KiB) Viewed 240 times

Take Care,

Bernie


From Shawn Good:
Jim – I’m assuming you’re talking about landlocked Atlantic salmon, and not Pacific salmon or anadromous Atlantic salmon. For anadromous runs of Atlantics, they pretty much stop feeding as soon as they enter freshwater, though as I’m sure you know, they can be enticed to hit flies.

For landlocks, I don’t think there’s a set time ahead of spawning they shut down. It could be days, it could be weeks. It’s likely highly dependent on the individual. There’s not physiological cue as there is leaving saltwater and entering freshwater to trigger it.

I’m copying our Grand Isle hatchery manager as he deals with salmon feeding and spawning feral fish from Champlain.

Shawn

Shawn: May I share this with the Champlain forum?
Jim Martino

Kelsey, Kevin <Kevin.Kelsey@vermont.gov>
Hi Jim,

I’m with Shawn that from a landlocked perspective it can be quite variable. From experience here at Ed Weed FCS, staging fish tend to be still on the feed in August and September, but as October approaches and fish start pushing in to the hatchery outfall, and the hormones start flowing they don’t seem interested in eating. They can react to drifting prey items out of instinct but don’t seem to ingest and males will aggressively strike larger baits and flies in an effort to eliminate any threats to the impending anticipated reproductive events. When fish enter our collection trap an are transferred to holding tanks to await spawning, we see “castings” (elongated intestinal mucous) as opposed to feces which indicates an empty stomach.

Regards,

Kevin
Shawn: May I share this with the Champlain forum?
Jim Martino

Hi Jim this is Kevin. I can’t see why not. With recognition that this applies to sexually mature fish. Immature fish or adults that do not go into spawning condition stay in feeding mode as there energy pattern is focused on growth and not reproduction.
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ReelInvestment
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Re: SALMON FEEDING

Post by ReelInvestment »

Thanks for sharing!

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Reelax
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Re: SALMON FEEDING

Post by Reelax »

WOW some very valuable information from some very smart and talented folks. Thanks Jim for starting this very informative thread.
Thanks to VT F&W for chiming in and helping to educate all of us....

I have caught Salmon in Lake Champlain every month of the year so I suspect that if they are in the lake they feed. Some of the slowness
in the salmon bite we see in the fall is that a percentage of the fish are up the rivers. It is VERY interesting to note that some of the bigger
fish we get every season are in Sept-Nov so some of the fish that stay in the lake are mature, just not breading that season :?:

One thing to note, when they come back down in late Nov and December... WATCH out they will eat just about anything :shock:
Matt B

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tamiron
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Re: SALMON FEEDING

Post by tamiron »

Continuation on salmon tactics
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