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Lake: Chatfield Reservoir
Fish: Gizzard Shad

chatfield bow fishing

Post By: fishhunter1214      Posted: 5/18/2014 12:33:15 AM     Points: 97    
Went to chatfield today to try my new gear out on some carp or maybe suckers. That didn't happen cause the shad were spawning! My first bow fishing trip was amazing nonetheless. All fish were 12-18in
 Reply by: fishhunter1214      Posted: 5/18/2014 12:37:10 AM     Points: 97
Another pic

 Reply by: kenny      Posted: 5/18/2014 6:24:47 AM     Points: 2036

Man.!!! Those are some big shad.. Good job
 Reply by: not too old to fish      Posted: 5/18/2014 9:26:53 AM     Points: 9171
What are you going to do with them ?
 Reply by: esoxrocks      Posted: 5/18/2014 10:42:57 AM     Points: 2522
Yea... about the "what are you going to do with them" thing. Really conflicted on bow fishing. On one hand lots of lakes need culling of some species (carp, suckers, shad... etc) .... on the other hand it's tough to think of killing then wasting the dead quarry as "sport".

Still what IS the alternative? Net the problem species? Drain the lake (like Lake John)? Poison and start over?

Maybe the answer is that while it isn't for me, if it doesn't hurt sport species (and may in fact help the fishery) let the folks that get enjoyment from bow fishing have at it. I think it's the piles of dead fish that will be thrown away or used as fertilizer that just strikes me as wrong on some level. If there was a good use for them I'd probably have a different reaction (like suckers that can be used for bait).
 Reply by: JIGORNAUT      Posted: 5/18/2014 1:50:20 PM     Points: 327
Doesn't chap my hide. As to what to do with them, will that's what M-80's are for.
 Reply by: fish      Posted: 5/18/2014 2:23:34 PM     Points: 6675
 Reply by: bhos      Posted: 5/18/2014 4:00:05 PM     Points: 571
Believe me, without some sort of regulation the carp will take over a fishery. Ive seen it happen. I like to keep the bow on the boat, but prefer to fly fish for the carp if they are willing. more of a challenge.
 Reply by: bhos      Posted: 5/18/2014 4:01:40 PM     Points: 571
Not that bowfishing doesn't take a lot of skill and does
 Reply by: bhos      Posted: 5/18/2014 5:58:31 PM     Points: 571
I always figure the carp make a nice meal for coyotes, foxes, birds, chupacabras,crawfish etc.
 Reply by: IceFishingFool      Posted: 5/18/2014 7:03:31 PM     Points: 1041
I think in a water like Chatfield, between Walleye and mother nature they keep the shad in check where they should be.
 Reply by: fishhunter1214      Posted: 5/18/2014 8:43:41 PM     Points: 97
We know a guy who uses them for compost. Look at the Colorado bow fishing association site and they show what we do with them after tourneys. They even give them to wildlife sanctuaries for the lions and tigers and bears (oh my)
 Reply by: cookster      Posted: 5/18/2014 9:29:25 PM     Points: 65623
Just the bears eat the carp. That's why they don't take them during the winter when the bears are hibernating.
 Reply by: Yellow Perch      Posted: 5/18/2014 11:00:35 PM     Points: 0
Love how this makes C&R hippies cringe.
 Reply by: bhos      Posted: 5/19/2014 12:26:54 PM     Points: 571
Great advice fishhunter! I will do that!
 Reply by: Ismiledonce      Posted: 5/19/2014 1:01:03 PM     Points: 1845
Lots of things you could do with those guys. I like the suggestion of donating them to wild animal sanctuaries. I think cut bait for catfish or crawdad traps is a good place to start. Don't discount them as fertilizer. It's merely a way of making them edible or more appetizing. I'm sure they don't taste very good so why not use them to feed your tomatoes or cucumbers and feed your family with those instead? Culling helps the fishery in certain circumstances and creates a sport for young folk. Unless they're a vital part of the fishery, I wouldn't sweat it.
 Reply by: esoxrocks      Posted: 5/19/2014 1:02:14 PM     Points: 2522
Yellow - if you are referring to my post, I have no problem with keeping fish for a purpose as I take my share of meals home each year. I really don't have a problem with Bow Fishing either, just that it would be cool if the result could be used for something useful.

Regarding your "hippie" comment...not sure where that came from. I have to wonder why a non-derogatory comment regarding productive use of game warranted tossing out a label (however, I guess I do own a tie-died t-shirt, so maybe that qualifies me).

Oh well, I'll just leave you and Cartman to your obsessions...

[log in for link]

 Reply by: PikeD      Posted: 5/19/2014 1:58:44 PM     Points: 1660
Chatfield has plenty of shad. Only a small number of walleye can eat the big shad in this post.
 Reply by: Dangly      Posted: 5/19/2014 2:03:49 PM     Points: 238
 Reply by: ol Uncle Marty      Posted: 7/2/2014 10:25:43 PM     Points: 352
Fishhunter. I am looking for some shad to try to use for catfishing. can you email me :
 Reply by: fishmohr      Posted: 7/2/2014 10:59:10 PM     Points: 80
You have to be a great shot to hit shad. You do take some$!* when you post those pics but I think it is awesome. Shad are not the most destructive fish in Chatfield. Try shooting some carp. Actually the idea of giving the fish to lion, tiger, and bears sanctuary is a great idea. A lot of lakes could benefit from having "rough" fish removed and put to good use (dead).

Besides walleye, the white sucker is very prevalent. You should target those in the spring. While you are at it, have you considered jet skiers, wake boarders or non pass buying bicyclist as targets? Just saying.....I am not sure any lion, tiger or bear would eat a jet skier without giving it a good "sniff"!
 Reply by: JOHN_COSprings      Posted: 7/3/2014 9:49:38 AM     Points: 640
The common and grass carp, and even shad, are considered game fish.

[log in for link]

I know, some of you may find it horrifying that carp are on the new game fish list and are still in denial - therapy I am sure is available! I am sure you will have some consolidation in that there is still no statewide bag or possession limit on those species.

It is illegal to discard any edible portions of "Game Wildlife" in Colorado unless caught and used as fish bait or as bait for furbearers.

If you are using these deceased fish as bait for furbearers, then obviously you will possess the appropriate furbearer license,good for all fur bearing mammals (coyotes, beavers, raccoons, foxes, bobcats, etc.).

The only fish species allowed to be taken and used for consumption or personal use as bait (either alive or dead) by fishing, seining, netting, trapping, or dipping are minnows, bluegill, hybrid bluegill, carp, sunfish, gizzard shad, sculpin, white and longnose suckers, yellow perch and rainbow smelt. Statewide bag limits apply to sunfish, bluegill, hybrid bluegills and yellow perch.

A valid commercial fishing license is required to take or possess bait fish, amphibians, or crustaceans for commercial purposes.

You certainly are not allowed to take deceased fish and dispose of them back into the water or upon the bank side as "food" for wildlife.

It would also be interesting to see if taking fish, then denoting them to a wildlife sanctuary, is considered "commercial" use - thus license required.

It would also be very interesting with regards to fish that are used as compost and fertilizer - I wonder if you are required to consume the edible flesh and only compost the bones and inedible portions ?

So, if you are taking shad, carp, then perhaps you'd best be consuming all the edible meat, using it as fish bait, or as bait for furbearers.

Regulations - always interesting and open to interpretation !

 Reply by: JDTBull      Posted: 7/3/2014 1:24:38 PM     Points: 165
its this easy:
 Reply by: The Doc      Posted: 7/3/2014 5:33:32 PM     Points: 667
Great reply John I've too been in this debate several times on F.E.
It's time to accept the all powerful carp! Lol
 Reply by: bluespidey81      Posted: 7/3/2014 5:35:57 PM     Points: 28
Hey if you need to unload a few Ill take some! excellent cut bait i go through them like crazy!
 Reply by: JOHN_COSprings      Posted: 7/3/2014 5:45:12 PM     Points: 640
Doc, resistance is futile, carp are like the borg, all will be assimilated !
 Reply by: cookster      Posted: 7/3/2014 7:28:08 PM     Points: 65623
Lol, John you crack me up!
 Reply by: pikeNcolorado      Posted: 7/4/2014 10:20:38 AM     Points: 17861
I truthfully don't care about guys bowfishing. However, I do feel like there should be a "season" for it. I can't stand seeing guys out during the pike spawn picking pike off of their beds with ease. Just my 2 cents.

The other thing that gets to me is when the fish are thrown on shore.... I was camping at Prewitt when the bowfishing toury was going on. I saw at least 60-5+ lbs carp dead and rotting on the shore. It made for some great camping let me tell you. Then you drive over one with your truck tire or your dog goes rolling in it. Now that's fun and it was the bowfishers. I see some fisherman throw them on shore too, but nothing like the bow guys. (I'm not stating that all bowfishers are the same. )
 Reply by: JOHN_COSprings      Posted: 7/4/2014 11:07:29 AM     Points: 640
If you see activities such as this then your course of action would be to report it to the authorities. It doesn't matter if it's a carp, bass, trout, or any other species. We have the regulations already to address this issue. It then becomes a matter of enforcement to curb these activities in future and educate the individuals, or organisations, involved.

If this was happening during a tournament then the officials should certainly have been notified - I am sure they wouldn't want, or approve, or this behavior.
 Reply by: elkinthebag      Posted: 7/4/2014 11:41:21 PM     Points: 2133
Would be retarded to do when ever but tournies are done total weight no limit no slot so why would they throw dead ones on shore. Remember things aren't always as they seem. Carp do escape some time and 90% of the time it is when your about to pull them in the boat. Carp do experience major die offs when their conditions change. I am with you with the pike it is a new thing and needs regulated a little more. I wasn't the happiest to hear they made the shooting list but then again they are twice as fast as carp there eye sight is better they scare easy and are only a 1/4 size target compared to a carp. Take that spring spawn out and you have a very worthy target.
 Reply by: JOHN_COSprings      Posted: 7/5/2014 7:12:05 AM     Points: 640
Elk, i'd have to agree with ya for once, a tourney based on weight, makes no sense to leave the fish to rot in that instance - the 60+ rotting smaller carp could well have been from a separate instance, either die off, prior angler/hunter activities - hard to tell ... It takes one helluva lot to kill a carp, if it were a fish kill due to conditions I would have expected other species also to be present in decent numbers. Perhaps we can call this the "Prewitt Mystery!".

Obviously if you are seeing first hand someone tossing fish to the bank, or dead back into the water, it really should be reported to the authorities!

 Reply by: Jimi      Posted: 7/5/2014 7:16:57 AM     Points: 205
Doesn't chap my hide. As to what to do with them, will that's what M-80's are for.

HEY.... You have some M-80's?
 Reply by: Hawaiian Punch      Posted: 7/5/2014 8:27:24 AM     Points: 11476
Way back when(1985) the fishing&hunting club in Sterling use to have a Carp turrny,one of the guys brought a dump truck and everyone threw their Carp in it and he hauled them off to some body that turned them into fertilizer and rottatilled in to some great soil that he ran a vegee garden out of . . .sound like a win/win deal . . . .So . . .how about we put together some sort of spot here on FE where archers/spear fisherman can trade info and make our surplus unwanted dead fish to good use?
I.E. . . .I have a bucket full of dead shad . . . .
Gardener Dan . . .I'll take em!
I for one,am getting tired of all the bickering about this . . .can't we all work together and come up with a soulition?
Has anyone any friends in the farming or garden groups?
There has to be a simple answer to this!

One summer in band camp,we all circled around the campfire . . .held hands and sang "kumby-ya my lord" . . . . .
We can cure Polio . . .can't we fix this?
 Reply by: NoNick      Posted: 7/5/2014 9:45:53 AM     Points: 88
"There has to be a simple answer to this!"

There is an answer. A few posts above ^

"Carp are on the new game fish list...It is illegal to discard any edible portions of "Game Wildlife" in Colorado unless caught and used as fish bait or as bait for furbearers."

So, no more dump trucks.

Throwing the fish on shore to rot is disrespectful to other's time and money, and those folks should be prosecuted if the DOW can ever get around to checking it out. If I catch a nice Carp, I'll admit it's a fun fight. However, I find it kind of dumb the DOW is now saying that Carp are on the same game fish plane as Walleye, Trout, and Bass. Maybe I'm one of those folks who needs Carp Acceptance Therapy, I guess.
 Reply by: JOHN_COSprings      Posted: 7/5/2014 10:03:01 AM     Points: 640
Bow hunters can still go out and twang away at their hated foe. The only flip side is, get out the knife and fork, a smoker, and a pressure cooker, and start learning methods to cook and eat your targets - heck, that's what the carp originally were brought here for. Either that, or load up your freezer with cut-bait for other species.

I am certain, for tournaments, the organisers work in advance with the DOW, local authorities, to arrange for what to do with the dump trucks full fish afterwards - e.g. donations to wildlife sanctuaries - seem to be the norm.

Whatever my personal beliefs, so long as people practice their sport, within the regulations, pay their appropriate license fee, they are entitled to do so - and heck, i'd even defend their rights to do so !

<may the carp gods save me for my sin in doing so>

 Reply by: JOHN_COSprings      Posted: 7/5/2014 10:06:28 AM     Points: 640
"Carp Acceptance Therapy" - it seems, in the past few years, many therapists and counsellors have been flooded with individuals trying to come to grips with this very subject.

In Colorado our fly fishermen were the first to fall prey to this ailment - in large numbers! Though the CDC I am sure were contacted all sources so far lead back to the "Trout Unlimited" crew ... a cluster of sickness there in the Denver area.

The only cure known at this time, also much cheaper than therapy, is simply, get a rod, a reel, some line, go out, and catch some carp - what you do with them afterwards, is your decision!

 Reply by: elkinthebag      Posted: 7/5/2014 12:31:36 PM     Points: 2133
Man john you seem like a great guy and as you know I look at both spectrums of it I bow fish and I fish for them. Both are great methods but bow fishing gives a little more selective harvest and puts a little population control into effect which in turn produces bigger fish. If I could bring my self to keeping a couple that I catch on a pole there would be a lot less little lakes that I fish with stunted carp aka: lake arbor. We are going to have to meet and fish one day with the poles of course catch and release of course.
 Reply by: JOHN_COSprings      Posted: 7/5/2014 12:49:34 PM     Points: 640
Elk, rumors of me being some huge green shrek like monster, eating those who despise carp with dragon sized teeth, razor sharp claws, and the roar of a lion, are a little over reaching. I try hard to respect everyone, their beliefs and passions, even if they are not my own.

Yes, one day, we need to sit upon the bankside, a cold beer nearby, and enjoy Colorado's beauty and bounty....

Knowing our luck, we would end up blanking ! but who'd care !

 Reply by: elkinthebag      Posted: 7/5/2014 1:11:49 PM     Points: 2133
When ever you make it up my way I am down. I have a couple spots we won't blank out at. But I am going to have to trade the beer for a coke. Non drinker.
 Reply by: Hawaiian Punch      Posted: 7/6/2014 7:34:14 AM     Points: 11476
When I was growing up,there were a cople of old folks that lived on my street . . .they came from Germany and just loved carp(in Europe carp are a treasured food) and I used to fish at a small lake at Cherry creek Dr. & Holly st. in Denver . . .every carp I caught they gladly took from me to cook and eat . . .there should still be some folks that enjoy carp . . .lets find them?
All you "Carp" guys . . pitch in and tell us what you do to bring a crap to the dinner table,how you cook them? how you clean & prep them?
Carp are just like any other fish . . .it's all in how you prep them!
Lets make carp the new must have fish for the generation X crowd!
Anyone remember when Walleye's were unknown here in CO ?
I do!
We spend WAY TOO MUCH TIME putting Carp down . . .lets work together to solve the problem? Besides . .this post was about Shad . . . . .
 Reply by: 10hunter      Posted: 7/6/2014 12:33:50 PM     Points: 5
I have hosted a few carp shoots over the years and I can tell you ALL the fish went to use. All tourneys require fish be turned in for weigh in and proper disposal and use. May not sound very proper for many but great fertilizer for a farmers field etc. Also smoked carp is darn good table fare... As always......there is a handfull that dont give a s%$@ about nothing but themselfs. Nuff said. H- Punch, Thank you sincerly for the walleye trip, good times.
 Reply by: J-FISHER      Posted: 7/6/2014 2:09:32 PM     Points: 23
Where can you underwater spearfish?????????????????? Can I do it in the Chatfield? I called the DOW and they told me they didn't even know where I can go. The only place they told me was Pueblo and I don't want to go that far. Could I do it in 11 Mile? Its bad when those who enforce the law cannot tell me the law. I'm very frustrated over this issue.
 Reply by: culinarypunk      Posted: 7/6/2014 5:06:24 PM     Points: 84487
 Reply by: Ajax5240      Posted: 7/6/2014 6:44:43 PM     Points: 38011
This is the only reason I don't like bow fishermen. We were 60' or so from the rocks in out boat and they cut right in front of is with the generator and lights blaring. Tools..
 Reply by: fargingicehole      Posted: 7/6/2014 8:17:24 PM     Points: 24892
JOHN_COSprings, I'm with you... "on the bankside, with a cold beer, enjoying Colorado's beauty and bounty"...
 Reply by: Kev-o      Posted: 7/6/2014 8:31:37 PM     Points: 84004
Yeah, icehole yeah......
 Reply by: ColoradoOutdoorsman      Posted: 7/6/2014 8:47:14 PM     Points: 821
So john this next question is for you, do carp sometimes die after spawning? When we found them we walked up on a few that were just floating. Nothing seemed wrong with them. We even saw one that was swimming perfectly and the next thing you know she just floats up. I tried to revive her like a trout but it didn't work. And sadly that day we lost 2, found one and the other disappeared.
 Reply by: Hawaiian Punch      Posted: 7/7/2014 7:06:44 AM     Points: 11476
10hunter . . .your very welcome!
 Reply by: JOHN_COSprings      Posted: 7/7/2014 12:20:01 PM     Points: 640
If the fish hadn't built up enough fat reserves for the prior winter, is otherwise sick, heck or just old, yes carp can perish after spawning.

fishhunter1214, sorry your thread got totally derailed, hijacked, and off course !

 Reply by: bigone      Posted: 7/8/2014 8:53:33 AM     Points: 36
Great laker bait... but kind of odd that some people don't know what they are shooting, and there are species of sucker in chatty that are protected.
 Reply by: Abel1      Posted: 7/9/2014 10:25:07 AM     Points: 206
How about at the next bow fishing carp tournament they take all those wasted carp and have them a big ol yummy fish fry? I would love to see how many of you stick around for that picnic.
 Reply by: JOHN_COSprings      Posted: 7/9/2014 10:49:09 AM     Points: 640
That is likely to be one heck of a lot of fried fish!

Couple of dozen fryers, a whole station/production line setup for filleting and prep - could probably feed hundreds, if not thousands !

Perhaps "you shoot it", "you eat it", contest ? bit like those sickening hot dog eating contests ? i'm sure some would compete !

I bet a lot more smaller fish would be targeted :) who on earth would want to chow down on a 20 lb monster ? yum !

 Reply by: Abel1      Posted: 7/9/2014 11:02:02 AM     Points: 206
Yes John I like it!

You shoot it you eat it could be one contest and another could be a carp eating contest. Heck I might even donate for some of the prizes to see that!

Maybe a couple of things for the tournament organizers to consider???
 Reply by: iamtrex      Posted: 7/15/2014 5:50:28 PM     Points: 0
Some of my wisdom to interject.
How many people eat prairie dogs or coyotes when you're blasting them?

Several years back there was a big carp die off, they were floating all around the lake and washing up on shore, nasty.

As for the pike massacre, in the last couple years I have shot 4 pike total. Not much of a massacre. I bet fewer than 10, if even that high a number, are taken a year by bowfishing. It is a lot of fun, very hard and very fast. Yes, I fly fish for them also.

All this anger towards bowfishing is childish. There are bad apples in every crowd. Reminds me of the issues years back between rifle hunters, black powder, and bow hunters bickering about who has the longest season, blah, blah, blah. I have hunted all those seasons, and I will continue to do so.

There are plenty of carp for every one to pursue, with bow, rod, or fly. Personally, I think a bigger issue here is some of the boaters on any lake, jet skiers in particular, they don't seem to have any consideration for fishermen on any lake, but we have to share the water with them also.Just go out and do it and enoy it and respect others that do the same or something a little different, even if you may not approve.

 Reply by: fishingfreak      Posted: 7/15/2014 5:59:56 PM     Points: 2755
well apparrently in Lewdogs situation, fisherman dont know how to respect other fisherman too.
 Reply by: culinarypunk      Posted: 7/15/2014 6:05:47 PM     Points: 84487
The thread is alive, again.
 Reply by: FastLayne      Posted: 8/2/2014 10:16:45 AM     Points: 4670
Fish remains put a foot below a planted tomato plant = a lot of great tasting tomatoes.

Nice shooting on the giant shad !! I'll have to use some of them as fertilizer next year.

 Reply by: Mustard Seed      Posted: 8/2/2014 12:23:28 PM     Points: 3
iantrex - I don't see the "wisdom" in your response, and if you truly think about it, you'll see that your words are hypocritical.

FastLayne - ask yourself why you responded to this thread, and you'll see how foolish you look.

This thread ended, started back up again, ended, and started back up again. Why you ask? The answer is crystal clear. Don't fall by the wayside you two.
 Reply by: The Doc      Posted: 8/2/2014 1:49:50 PM     Points: 667
Hawaiian punch I too had Germany neighbors that pickled carp that I caught from lollipop lake in the 80s and 90s you just brought back a lot of great old memories. Makes wonder if it was the same couple they lived on Hudson St right by the lake. They were holocaust survivors to boot.

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