Scott Bisping and Daniel Nelson of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission presented information about the Harris Chain of Lakes fishery.
The Lakes have improved over the last 40 years. Water clarity has improved. As a consequence, weed growth has increased, which has resulted in greater fish populations.
Creel surveys are used to estimate catch rates. If you have fished Lake Griffin, you may have been surveyed by Denny Denis Dzurinko, one of our club members. In fact, that is Denny in this slide, although difficult to identify.
This is the result of creel surveys on Lake Harris. As to be expected, catch rates are higher for Black Crappie than Largemouth Bass.
This is an interesting chart of total catches per given site in the lakes of the chain. It shows that with the exception of Apopka, the lakes are about the same.
In the analysis of Hydrilla desirability, it was determined that fishing and recreational boating usage was split rather evenly, with boating being slightly greater. Additional survey results indicated that fishermen were inclined to be more tolerant of Hydrilla than boaters, some actually preferring more than at present.
Additional information was presented on the state of the Harris Chain fishery. All in all, it was a very informative presentation by Bisping and Nelson.
Daniel Nelson, FWC
Scott Bisping, FWC
Jerry Lester, 10/9/2019