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Lake: Meadow Park Lake
Fish: Common Carp

Looking to get into carp

Post By: michaelpthompson      Posted: 2/8/2019 7:17:23 PM     Points: 3315    
Been watching YouTube videos about carp fishing, and ordered some stuff to make pack baits. I'm a bit mystified about their legal status though. They're not listed on the bag limit chart in the 2018 Fishing Brochure. I don't think I'd plan on keeping a bunch, but perhaps a couple of small ones to eat. Lots of delicious looking recipies out there. I hear they fight well, but I'm thinking of them more as a meat fish.

I can hear the keyboards warming up already with the jokes about trash fish and such, but I'm very hopeful, based on what I've seen. Here's a French chef who says we need to rename them, and then we'll appreciate them more. [log in for link]

Any advice appreciated, especially about Meadow Park Lake. It's hear my house and supposedly full of them.

 Reply by: Goosehunter82      Posted: 2/8/2019 9:31:28 PM     Points: 77855
Shoot Bron an email. He fishes there quite a bit and definitely catches the carp.
 Reply by: brookieflyfisher      Posted: 2/9/2019 9:30:24 AM     Points: 6196
There are carp everywhere in this state, and while some guys on here chase them with fancy baits and lures, I've found that canned corn or bread always does the job. Does it so well, in fact, that I actually tend to chase them with a fly rod to give myself a challenge.

There is no bag limit on carp. Carp are an introduced invasive with numerous proven negative effects on water quality and lake and stream health. You should kill every carp you catch. Just don't leave them to rot on the bank. Take them home and get rid of them as you see fit, whether eating them or turning them into fertilizer or just straight into the dumpster.

Chatfiled and cherry creek have some big carp. The South Platte through Denver has lots of carp, some big ones. Most small metro ponds are packed with smaller fish.
 Reply by: RogBow      Posted: 2/9/2019 10:01:11 AM     Points: 2761
Bread on a bare hook, floated in front of cruising carp or carp pods works very well. Ball the bread up tight around the hook and do a slow lob so it doesn't fly off the hook. A no.4 through 1/0 hook is good.

Wait about 2 seconds after the carp hits the bread ball then set the hook.
 Reply by: bron      Posted: 2/9/2019 10:29:44 AM     Points: 48925
Meadow is still capped be we are watching it eagerly for some carp action. Contact me and Ill let you know when we make that first carp trip of the year there.
 Reply by: rkhancock      Posted: 2/9/2019 10:30:19 AM     Points: 22834
I have had good luck with carp while fishing with canned sweet corn. I tend to put just a few pieces on the hook and fish near structure like, wood piles and over hanging trees.
 Reply by: bluecollarguy      Posted: 2/9/2019 10:43:46 AM     Points: 48
As Brookie said, most of the metro ponds have smaller fish (small carp is a relative term when 24" is an average fish lol) but when i was younger, i have memories of the occasional much larger fish hanging out with the crowd.

These days i only seem to see the rare big bruiser (ie 36") in waters that have very small populations and i'm assuming these are much older fish.

Grass carp are a different story! I still get unsettled when 40" fish are shooting by when i'm in the float tube and it is very concerning when they actually run into you!
 Reply by: Pathway      Posted: 2/9/2019 2:30:19 PM     Points: 542
Your link is to the use of Asian carp, which is a whole different animal. Chexs cereal works as well. Already has holes for the hook. And carp have been in Colorado since the 1890's.
 Reply by: skiman      Posted: 2/9/2019 3:41:08 PM     Points: 2825
If you’re looking for “table fare”, I would seriously consider not eating anything that comes out of Meadow Park Lake.
 Reply by: bron      Posted: 2/9/2019 6:28:54 PM     Points: 48925
Fish there much Ski?
 Reply by: michaelpthompson      Posted: 2/9/2019 7:08:31 PM     Points: 3315
Thanks for all the replies.

First, I'd love to hear more on the differences between Asian Carp and Common Carp.

Yes, I am looking for table fare, so 10-12 pound fish are ideal. Is there something wrong with the carp in Meadow Lake? They may be stunted or something, but that's no problem. Are they poisonous, or what.

I am also looking at carp on a fly, but first of all, meat fishing. so any information is useful.

And bron, I have sent you a PM. Glad to meet up when the pond is open, or whatever. Thanks.
 Reply by: rkhancock      Posted: 2/9/2019 8:03:18 PM     Points: 22834
I would not be too worried about the fish being poisonous in meadow park lake. The only potential hazard I could see would be excess nitrogen and phosphorus levels from fertilizer run offs from all the yards in the area. The lake has pretty good flow through it the whole year which could help keep these levels to a minimum. Meadow park is a good place to start with carp on the fly because of the number of carp in there.
 Reply by: skiman      Posted: 2/9/2019 8:17:38 PM     Points: 2825
No bron, I haven’t.
Just like many parks and golf courses, there is an abundance of fertilizer and geese droppings entering the water. Not a very appetizing scenerio. I meant no disrespect to your fishery Sir, just an observation. If I’m wrong about Meadow Park, I stand corrected.
 Reply by: bron      Posted: 2/10/2019 9:58:31 AM     Points: 48925
RK is spot on. Good water flow, not brackish.
 Reply by: skiman      Posted: 2/10/2019 11:10:24 AM     Points: 2825
Good to know. Thanks for the schoolin bron! Again, I apologize for posting any inaccurate information.
 Reply by: nparker      Posted: 2/10/2019 12:15:01 PM     Points: 2374
Please do not kill Grass Carp. They are there to control weeds and rather expensive to stock. Check the out under Fish Species to see what they look like.
 Reply by: brookieflyfisher      Posted: 2/10/2019 2:02:18 PM     Points: 6196
I'm gonna have to disagree with you nparker. No disrespect directed at you, of course, just expressing an opinion formed through my experience in fisheries and water quality.

Grass carp are awful. They eat submerged weeds (aka fish habitat). All the nutrients left over have to go somewhere, usually creating nasty toxic cyanobacteria blooms that can cause low oxygen and fish kills. And that's to say nothing of the septic shock humans, pets, and wild animals can get as their liver silently fails from ingestion of the toxins produced by the cyanobacteria.

I'll never understand the decision to willfully stock something that contributes so clearly and directly to poor water quality.
 Reply by: JOHN_COSprings      Posted: 2/10/2019 4:32:48 PM     Points: 640
Looking forwards to Spring and the start of another carp fishing, catch & release, coffee drinking season with friends and family.


 Reply by: michaelpthompson      Posted: 2/10/2019 5:38:41 PM     Points: 3315
I don't know about grass carp. They don't stock anything in Meadow Park Lake, and I'm not sure about stocking carp anywhere, as they tend to multiply prolifically. Back East, they are sometimes calling them a naturalized species, rather than invasive, because they have equalized with the local population, but elsewhere they are invasive and wildlife managers usually like to see them taken out of the habitat. That's another reason I've become interested in eating them.
 Reply by: bron      Posted: 2/10/2019 6:04:48 PM     Points: 48925
There are no grass carp in Meadow, even if I do call everything I catch grass carp.

Hi John!
 Reply by: michaelpthompson      Posted: 2/10/2019 7:26:52 PM     Points: 3315
 Reply by: brookieflyfisher      Posted: 2/11/2019 12:19:48 PM     Points: 6196
Yeah...carp aren't good. You can fish for whatever you like and then do what you want with your catch within the regs but I'm serious when I say they should be removed. Here are some examples why:

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 Reply by: michaelpthompson      Posted: 2/12/2019 8:43:30 AM     Points: 3315
Well, I stopped by Meadow Park Lake yesterday to visit and check it out. Mostly still iced over, only a bit of open water on the East end. I was actually pleasantly surprised. It's a nice looking place. From the descriptions on here, I rather expected a trashy, overgrown dump. It's not like that at all.

Nice playground where my grandsons could play while I am fishing, or they could try to catch bluegills if they want. That does raise a question though. If one of the carp decides to take their bluegill bait, it could easily drag their small rod into the lake. Is this likely to happen? What do you think?
 Reply by: bron      Posted: 2/12/2019 8:46:09 AM     Points: 48925
I've had it happen there and jumped in to save my pole. If the kiddos fish a worm under a bobber right by shore it's not likely to happen. It is a nice park, wish there was a bathroom though.
 Reply by: michaelpthompson      Posted: 2/12/2019 8:52:23 AM     Points: 3315
@brookieflyfisher, thanks for the information. Would you recommend against catch and release for these fish? Are carp considered invasive in Colorado? Your links were mostly dealing with situations in other states.
 Reply by: michaelpthompson      Posted: 2/12/2019 8:54:03 AM     Points: 3315
@bron, that does make sense about the bathroom, especially if I have a four-year-old and a two-year-old with me. Maybe we need to lobby the city to put in a porta-potty.

ETA: I put in a request for a porta-potty on Ask Arvada. We'll see what happens.
 Reply by: brookieflyfisher      Posted: 2/12/2019 1:23:57 PM     Points: 6196
Yes, they are invasive in Colorado. Many shallow lakes and ponds in the metro area and plains suffer from the same effects as are seen in shallow lakes in Utah, Iowa, Minnesota, Oregon, Canada...etc.

Personally I would kill them. Carp, like bluegills, perch, and brook trout, tend to stunt if their populations get too large. Getting their numbers down should help improve conditions for other fish in the lake while also increasing the carp's average size. So it's a win-win.

And good luck fishing man hope you get some bigguns. If you find a good recipe that makes those lil dudes taste good you let us know.
 Reply by: rkhancock      Posted: 2/13/2019 4:35:29 PM     Points: 22834
@brookie I agree that carp can over populate and stunt themselves. But I don't think of them as a threat to other species. Most of the lakes around town with the biggest bass and sunfish also have large numbers of carp. I've found that in ponds without much baitfish the bass grow large while feeding on baby carp. I've found lakes where bass follow schools of carp fry around along with situations where bass will follow adult carp to feed on matter that the carp shuffle up from the bottom. Carp can have up to 2 million babies per spawn and they can grow up to 8 inches in a season. That's a lot of biomass for larger predator species to feed on.

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