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Sick fish on the Middle Provo

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Sick fish on the Middle Provo
Not the good sick either.

A buddy and I fished the Middle Provo last weekend and encountered at least a dozen sick/dying fish all in the larger class of fish. They had like a white looking slime covering their bodies. They seemed lifeless and if they were still upright they didn't swim away when we approached.

None of the sick fish we saw were smaller than about 15". All the fish we caught looked perfectly healthy.

Please watch the video below, at around the 2 minute mark I net a sick fish and get a close up of what these fish looked like. We were concerned to say the least but both my friend and myself and fairly new to fishing this place and want to see if others are concerned or more knowledgeable about what happened to these trout.

https://youtu.be/dNN4lNCYCWI

P.s. Give the rest of the video a look too. Let me know what you think.
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Re: [T-DOG91] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
Nothing unusual. Browns on the Provo have been afflicted with SPAWNING SYNDROME (link) for decades. I observed it on my first fall fishing trips to the Provo below Deer Creek back in the early 1960s. And it seems to happen just about every year on not only the Provo but a few other streams as well.

Nasty looking stuff.

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Re: [TubeDude] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
As beginner fly fishermen, my buddy and I were quite concerned. We have only fished the spawn this year and took extra precautions to make sure we didn't have a negative impact on the spawning trout. But we saw those fish and thought something terrible must have happened. However I was sure I wasn't the first to see this fungus.

Thanks Tubedude, you always have the answers.
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Re: [T-DOG91] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
Every year there are anglers who see those fuzzy brown trout for the first time...and run up and down the bank in their waders crying "The sky is falling". I was one of them. But after finding that it was a natural thing that eliminated some of the larger, older and weaker fish...but not all...I found it easier to accept.

We all need to be careful not to damage the spawning redds, but it is still possible to catch some large healthy fish with the right approach.

My "heart-jolt" on this subject happened about my second year at BYU...on the Provo where it ran through the (then undeveloped) outside edge of town. All summer I had been working to try to fool a big old brown I could see holding under some exposed roots next to the bank. I tried everything from streamers to nightcrawlers. Never so much as a fin wiggle or a sniff.

Then, one November day, after an early snowstorm, I hiked down to that spot thinking I might have a shot. But, instead of holding in his fave hidey hole under the roots, my big brown was laying on his side in shallow water on my side of the river...his gills still feebly working as life ebbed from him. What made the lingering mental image more horrible was that he was mostly covered with that white fungus. An ignominious end to a noble beast.

Thankfully, that was not my first encounter with the "Provo Crud". I had been catching the occasional infected brown for about a month by that time. And I had a discussion on the subject of the white stuff with a DWR officer who came down to check my license on a previous trip. So, even though I didn't like it, I was more understanding.

Still, that big old snooty brown lives on in my memories...mostly as a healthy fish before succumbing to the scum. It would have been great to hook him at least once, but then the memories would not be as bitter-sweet.

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Re: [TubeDude] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
That is honestly heartbreaking. Hunting a big fish like that for so long and seeing him sick before getting him on the line. I'm just glad it wasn't really out of the ordinary. Sure had us concerned.
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Re: [T-DOG91] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
I may be wrong, but while fishing rivers full off stunted browns like the Middle Provo should you really care about disrupting a few redds? Iíve heard that purposely tromping a few would be helpful.
Just one more brookie........
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Re: [T-DOG91] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
I misread this, I thought it said sick of fishing the middle Provo, I hit that point years ago, stunted fish, and overrun with Orvis dorks.
(This post was edited by remo_5_0 on Dec 7, 2017, 7:18 AM)
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Re: [brookieguy1] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
Some mortality is good. I don't know about stomping redds. But after some different conversations with different folks who know more than I, I may even keep a couple fish to help reduce competition when I go to the midpro.
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Re: [remo_5_0] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
Luckily I'm still a newbie so I won't get sick of the Middle for at least 2-3 more outings haha
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Re: [T-DOG91] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
Keep Ďem? What to plant with your corn? You would have to be part goat to eat those river browns!Happy
Just one more brookie........
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Re: [brookieguy1] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
I haven't ever kept a fish out of a river. I usually only keep rainbows anyway. Are they that bad?! Haha
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Re: [T-DOG91] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
Probably not that bad. Iím just partial to alpine lake scud-fed brook trout with bright red meat. Iíve been spoiled.
Just one more brookie........
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Re: [brookieguy1] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
Judging by the screen name I should have guessed that haha the only trout I have tried that I didn't like was tiger trout. Browns, rainbows, cutthroat, and brooks all taste good to me. However I haven't kept river fish to eat, always out of a body of water.
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Re: [brookieguy1] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
brookieguy1 wrote:
I may be wrong, but while fishing rivers full off stunted browns like the Middle Provo should you really care about disrupting a few redds? Iíve heard that purposely tromping a few would be helpful.

Kind of understand your point of view on this. It is interesting that the state has been suggesting we keep some of the smaller fish to reduce the numbers but .......

Most fly fishermen have got into an C&R only mentality. I think we need to Outlaw Flyfishing on the Provo for 5 years. LOL

And I am an avid Fly Fisherman, but NOT AN ORVIS DORK. ROFLOL
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Re: [brookieguy1] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
brookieguy1 wrote:
Probably not that bad. Iím just partial to alpine lake scud-fed brook trout with bright red meat. Iíve been spoiled.

A good brookie has always been my favorite as well. But, while I prefer them to eat, I have seen them overpopulate in some Western Waters and out compete with those lazy Cutties.

I actually prefer a good Brown in the frypan over a bow, and cutts are on the bottom of my list of slimers to eat.
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Re: [Anglinarcher] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
Ya, I think we have been our own worst enemy on that river when it comes to C&R, I am as guilty as anyone because I don't keep fish but I know it would help to pull a lot of those fish out of that river and let the others get bigger.
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Re: [Anglinarcher] Sick fish on the Middle Provo In reply to
I really enjoyed "Orvis Dork" as well. I'm definitely letting that one fly at some buddies sometime soon