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Kevin McKay

when does a invasive species become a native?

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I know we stock and embrace brown trout and rainbows but I assume at some point they were invasive and now are managed as native fish, same with smallmouth? Which got me thinking about northern pike even musky, which have been here for something like 30 years in the belgrades and musky in northern Maine, just thinking out loud.

"Northern Pike were initially introduced into Maine during the 1970’s, as a result of an illegal introduction to the Belgrade Chain of Lakes. "

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Don't much matter anymore. They ain't goin' anywhere.

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8 minutes ago, dryflie said:

A non native fish is never a native. 

I agree with that statement. Self sustaining does not make them native. Introduced species can become "wild" over a period of time, but I don't think they can be called native. 

Ron

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Exactly... native fish are fish that were never transplanted there.  Small mouth will never be native to the Rapid.  

Need to be careful to avoid using wild and native synonymously. 

 

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I don't know Kevin

What came first the chicken or the egg?  When was the first brook trout documented in history and was there another species of fish prior to the brook trout that thru evolution replaced it?  Does that make the brook trout an invasive then?   This is a very interesting topic.  Can anyone answer these questions unequivocally?

Thoughts?

 

 

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Browns and rainbows aren't invasives - they're exotics.  Exotics are introduced intentionally and legally.  Invasives are introduced unintentionally and/or illegally, either directly, or through some human alteration of the ecosystem. Browns and 'bows are exotics, pike invasives.  As far as I'm concerned, any fish that Mother Nature didn't plant in the drainage without an assist from humanity can't be considered a native.  That goes for everything from pike and smallmouths anywhere in the state to landlocked Atlantic salmon in Rangeley Lake, even if they were spawned in local gravel. Conversely, if Mother Nature put it there unassisted, it qualifies as a native, whether that species preceded any particular geological era or not. 

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ok wild not native, when do we manage a fish that has been here in a system since the 70s? what does it matter how they were introduced at this point? all exotic if they aren't  NAITIVE. I don't agree with these bucket biologist but the pike in belgrades have been there since 1970s. I see the state stocking brook trout in the Belgrades I assume to feed the pike?

I see a lot of people fishing for them, trout fisherman

I know they net the pike in push every spring and kill hundreds but it seems more and more are there ever spring, along with smallmouth and large mouth

 

what about the musky up north? they have been around a long time also, just curious when do we manage them, I know lodges up there are now guiding for them

just asking,curious of peoples thoughts on this, I know how some of my friends feel

 

here is good article

 

https://bangordailynews.com/2015/04/10/news/state/pike-an-exciting-opportunity-for-the-open-minded-fly-fisherman/

 

 

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Sooooo 

When the continents were all one and the tectonic activity separated the land masses into separate continents, were these individual species present in all places? That must be the reason a particular species died off due to natural selection or because of the climactic changes as the continents shifted further apart.

What came first the chicken or the egg? 

Just poking the bear guys:D.   

 

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Wow Alan thats funny.:lol:

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When we start managing them is when they become widely popular and highly valued as a game species and we demand that they be managed as such.  The state "manages" all kinds of exotics from browns to bass by establishing and enforcing length and bag limits, closed seasons and waters,  stocking (not bass), etc. in the name of creating and sustaining fisheries for those species.  This requires the investment of resources. More resources  are dedicated to some species - coldwater, primarily - and less to others. This is because, generally speaking, Mainers have a preference for coldwater species.  If there is ever enough hue and cry to do the same for pike, musky, or whatever else, the state will probably respond.  My sense of it is that although there are people who like these species, there isn't yet a critical mass of folks demanding a higher quality or more extensive pike, musky, or bass fishery in the state.  In fact, I'd wager that most people would actually like to see fewer pike, musky, and bass and more trout and salmon.  It's also important to factor in the historical / cultural place that brook trout and landlocked salmon have in the hearts and minds of Mainers and even tourists who come here to fish for them. Not that Mainers and tourists don't also like to fish for pike, musky, and bass; but let's face it, the love just ain't the same.  That affection for trout and salmon counts for a lot.  If pike and musky were a significant economic force or played a vital ecological role like chinooks in the Great Lakes, or if they occupied an important place in local culture and history, things might be different.  But they aren't and they don't - at this point, anyway.   Political leadership (those folks that we all elect) and the bureaucracy that they direct are simply using their very limited resources to support popular, and thus economically, culturally, and yes, biologically important species, and letting others fare as they will.  If you want to see pike, musky, and bass managed more aggressively, you will have to come up with some more IF & W resources, organize a heck of a lobbying campaign in Augusta, change the sport fishing culture in the state, and perhaps all three.

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I spent some time thinking about this and discussing it with a bunch of fish biologists before I wrote a column in the SAM News last fall. Here's what I came up with:

 

Native fish are wild, self-sustaining populations of fish that have persisted in habitat they colonized naturally, without human intervention.

 

If humans had a role in a species getting there, deliberately or accidentally, legally or illegally, it's not native.  And I'm not much interested in fishing for it.  I know many others feel differently.

  While I understand that introduced species will be managed, I'd prefer to see my license dollars spent on Maine's native fish.  And I don't want any management of invasive fish,  a category that I believe applies to all of the state's populations of pike, muskellunge, and black crappie, as well as to many populations of bass (the illegally introduced ones).

As for browns and rainbows, while other eastern states appear to have some problems with them outcompeting native brook trout, we have very few wild populations of either species in Maine, and all the ones I know about coexist with wild brook trout and appear not to have large impacts on them.  (That said, I don't know that the impacts have been studied.)  Ditto for Maine's many introduced populations of landlocked salmon.

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Hmm I wonder how this applies to people? Fish and people have more in common than I thought. Depends on who you ask. 

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Thank you everyone insight, I do like to hear people thoughts on this

I will say my spring fishing use to trout in western Maine now I spend it chasing pink and my whole May guiding is for pike now

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If you want to know the difference, look at the 2018 general fishing laws.  The ones that are accepted are controlled. The others, not even listed.  Not game fish. Might work as fertilizer but probably not very well.  Pike are there for people to see who your trout fisherman are, trout fisherman catch a pike it certainly isn't returned to trouting water.  Hate to go to a stocking area and have a pike grab the fish on my line.  If he doesn't pop my tippet I guarantee you he is done fishing.  But I do see people catch small pike in that same hatchery stocking area put them back in the water. Gets me wondering if we should just close the hatcheries and join the rest of New England with a lot of nothing.

 

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On 2/15/2018 at 10:06 PM, Flynoob said:

Hmm I wonder how this applies to people? Fish and people have more in common than I thought. Depends on who you ask. 

So true.

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