Small lakes offer good fishing opportunities
TribLIVE Sports Videos
You wouldn't necessarily want to fish Filbert Pond, any of the three Deer Lakes or Marshall Lake if your goal is to catch lots of big fish.
But all three can provide varying levels of sport.
Biologists from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Area 8 office in Somerset recently surveyed four-acre West, or Upper, Deer Lake; three-acre Lower Deer Lake; and eight-acre Marshall Lake, all in Allegheny County, and 18-acre Filbert Pond in Fayette County.
Filbert Pond, private water west of Uniontown on New Salem Road that is open to public fishing, showed the best of the bunch.
“The crappies and bass there were better than they were previously,” said Rick Lorson, the commission's area fisheries manager.
Black crappies were more abundant and larger than white, with fish up to 12 inches, Lorson said. The bass included one that was 21 inches, “so there were some nice fish,” he said.
Marshall Lake in North Park had never been examined before this year. Biologists found lots of carp, including one 26-pound fish, good numbers of decent-sized largemouth bass and lots of stunted bluegills, crappies and pumpkinseeds, Lorson said.
“It's another lake that's full of gizzard shad, so you could almost predict that the panfish would be abundant but small. They really kind of take it on the nose when it comes to competing against those shad,” Lorson said.
Of the two Deer Lakes that biologist examined — they didn't get to Middle Deer because of time — the Lower Lake was best, especially for larger bass. Biologists collected 69 bass from the lower lake compared to 84 from the upper. But 46 percent of the lower lake's bass were 12 inches or longer compared to 13 percent at the upper, biologist Mike Depew said.
Bluegills were the most abundant species in both, but most were small. A limited number of crappies were found in West Deer, but they were disappointing, “with few fish of quality size,” Depew said.
Too many panfish and shad again are to blame. But at West Deer, there's another factor.
“There are not very many weeds in there, and warmwater species like bass and bluegills need those to do well,” Lorson said.
Biologists likely will recommend the commission install man-made habitat structures in the lake to improve the fishing, he said.
Bob Frye is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com or via Twitter @bobfryeoutdoors.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Fishing report: Aug. 15, 2014
- Pheasant hunting inequities outlined
- Frye: Hunters might soon be able to take safety course online
- Outdoors notebook: Hunting has environmental benefits
- Game Commission may adopt user permit for game lands
- Fishing report: Fishing spotty around region
- Outdoor notices: Aug. 17, 2014