Home Forums Fishing General Fishing Forum Bighead or Silver Carp Fishing

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  • AvatarAjax
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    Post count: 10

    Hi everyone, I’m a former member with hundreds of posts on these forums but I was never able to access my old account when the site went down and changed. I still don’t know what happened that caused all that. Anyways I have a question, has anyone targeted bighead and silver carp here in Iowa to eat? I’ve seen them below red rock dam but never been able to specifically target them. I tried some filets and patties from a bighead a friend caught and they were fantastic so I’m looking to catch, snag, or arrow some for myself but not sure where to start. Any guidance would be great!

    Thanks in advance!

    • This topic was modified 8 months ago by Avatar Ajax.
    Avatarzondy
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    Post count: 527

    Can’t give you any specific tips but yes, they are below Red Rock.  We catch bighead far more often than silvers, although we see them as well.  Usually catch them while casting or trolling for whites and wipers so we are not really targeting them.  We have caught several that were over 40 pounds.

    AvatarAjax
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    Post count: 10

    Same here I’ve snagged them from shore while fishing for white bass but only a couple in the past several years so I’m trying to figure out a place or method to target them specifically. I tend to snag way more buffalo while fishing for white bass than anything else.

    bowfisherbowfisher
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    Post count: 2204

    The largest consistent concentration I have ever seen of Bigheads and Silvers is below the hydro dam in Ottumwa and down river. I shot my first Bighead in 1996 below the Ottumwa hydro, we didn’t even know what it was at the time.

    AvatarAjax
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    Post count: 10

    OK I’ve been to ottumwa once but didn’t fish, just saw a bunch of guys trying to snag paddle fish. What do you think would be the most effective way to target them? I have a boat but it’s not set up for bowfishing so I usually do it from the shore. Or would snagging be a better bet? Not sure what the regulations are regarding snagging close to a dam like that.

    bowfisherbowfisher
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    Post count: 2204

    OK I’ve been to ottumwa once but didn’t fish, just saw a bunch of guys trying to snag paddle fish. What do you think would be the most effective way to target them? I have a boat but it’s not set up for bowfishing so I usually do it from the shore. Or would snagging be a better bet? Not sure what the regulations are regarding snagging close to a dam like that.

     

    Right now snagging would be the only way possible. You would need to find a deep pool where they will be stacked on the bottom like cords of wood. Pull a large treble hook acrossed the bottom and hang on when you hook one!

     

    If you wait till spring, put the boat in by the bridge view center and drift the river banks. Normally late April through May is the best time to find them.

    SwampFootedKarpKillerSwampFootedKarpKiller
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    Post count: 8

    When the water warms up in spring and summer I go out and target these fish. I use three different methods: snagging, bowfishing, and I even gig them.

    I live on the Missouri river and the Carp here are usually found feeding in very large schools behind wingdams. The really big ones seem to be by themselves more often than not.

    I like to hunt them down in my kayak. Casting a huge treble hook into feeding schools is real fun. They fight like hell! Sometimes I add weight to increase casting distance.

    When it comes to bowfishing or gigging them, use polarized sunglasses. Don’t wear brightly colored clothes. Move slowly and methodically. My biggest challenge when hunting these Carp is to see them before they see me.

    Whack em and stack em! We’re all doing Iowa’s native fish a favor by killing and removing invasive Carp from our lakes and rivers.

    AvatarAjax
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    Post count: 10

    When the water warms up in spring and summer I go out and target these fish. I use three different methods: snagging, bowfishing, and I even gig them. I live on the Missouri river and the Carp here are usually found feeding in very large schools behind wingdams. The really big ones seem to be by themselves more often than not. I like to hunt them down in my kayak. Casting a huge treble hook into feeding schools is real fun. They fight like hell! Sometimes I add weight to increase casting distance. When it comes to bowfishing or gigging them, use polarized sunglasses. Don’t wear brightly colored clothes. Move slowly and methodically. My biggest challenge when hunting these Carp is to see them before they see me. Whack em and stack em! We’re all doing Iowa’s native fish a favor by killing and removing invasive Carp from our lakes and rivers.

    That’s awesome man sounds like a rush having a giant carp towing a kayak around. I definitely want to fish the Missouri River someday, unfortunately my boat isn’t really set up for the river so I’m mainly looking to target them from shore which I know is pretty limiting. Thanks for the comment that’s very interesting, I agree I always feel good about getting rid of the invasive species, especially since silvers and bigheads compete directly with paddlefish.

    AvatarAjax
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    Post count: 10

    OK I’ve been to ottumwa once but didn’t fish, just saw a bunch of guys trying to snag paddle fish. What do you think would be the most effective way to target them? I have a boat but it’s not set up for bowfishing so I usually do it from the shore. Or would snagging be a better bet? Not sure what the regulations are regarding snagging close to a dam like that.

    Right now snagging would be the only way possible. You would need to find a deep pool where they will be stacked on the bottom like cords of wood. Pull a large treble hook acrossed the bottom and hang on when you hook one! If you wait till spring, put the boat in by the bridge view center and drift the river banks. Normally late April through May is the best time to find them.

    OK thanks I’ll have to try that come spring. I’d like to try and target them this winter some time too, I remember years ago Catfish Calvin posted about snagging loads of them down by Keokuk I believe. But I think he did that from a boat, I wonder if it’d be possible from shore?

    Has anyone heard from catfish calvin recently? I messaged him privately years ago about catfishing and he gave me some great advice but that was back when I had my old account and now I can’t get back into that account. Not sure if it got deleted when the website changed or if just the password changed.

    AvatarAjax
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    Post count: 10

    So I’ve been talking to a guy in Illinois who snags silvers and he said that they are usually near the top of the water column but he never fishes for them during the winter. So I’m wondering if anyone here has any direct experience catching them in the winter? Bow fisher mentioned snagging in deep holes in the winter but I’d like to try and avoid snagging any native fish if possible and I’m a little worried that snagging wintering holes will be a little too indiscriminate. So does anyone know if there’s a way to target the Asian carp specifically?

    stick500stick500
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    Post count: 457

    There are restrictions on hook size and distance to certain dams as for snagging in Iowa.

    As for cooking them, I imagine you can do anything you would normally do with any other white, firm fish such as walleye, crappie, cod, etc.

    I am in Dubuque area and we ain’t got those critters up this far (yet!)

    Would love to shoot or snag some myself sometime.

    from the regs;

    Bow Fishing, Spearing & Snagging

    A valid sport fishing license lets you take Com-mon Carp, Bighead Carp,
    Silver Carp, Grass Carp,
    Black Carp, Bigmouth Buf-

    falo, Smallmouth Buffalo,
    Black Buffalo, Quillback,
    Highfin Carpsucker, River
    Carpsucker, Spotted Suck-
    er, White Sucker, Short-
    head Redhorse, Golden
    Redhorse, Silver Red-
    horse, Freshwater Drum,
    Shortnose Gar, Longnose
    Gar, Bowfin, Gizzard Shad
    and Goldfish by snagging, bow fishing and spearing and Paddlefish (p. 11) by snagging. You cannot use a hook larger than a 5/0 treble hook or measuring more than 1 1⁄4 inches long when two of the hook points are placed on a ruler.

    Snagging is not permitted in the following areas: 1. Des Moines River from directly below Saylorville Dam to Southeast 14th St. bridge in Des Moines; 2. Cedar River in Cedar Rapids from directly below the 5 in 1 Dam under I-380 to the 1st Ave. bridge; 3. Cedar River in Cedar Rapids from directly below the “C” St. Roller Dam to 300 yards downstream; 4. Iowa River from directly below the Coralville Dam to 300 yards downstream; 5. Chari-
    ton River from directly below Lake Rathbun Dam
    to 300 yards downstream; 6. Spillway area from directly below the Spirit Lake outlet to the conflu-ence at East Okoboji Lake; 7. Northeast bank of the Des Moines River from directly below the Ottumwa Dam, including the catwalk, to the Jefferson St. bridge. Snagging from the South Market St. bridge is also prohibited; 8. Missouri River, any Missouri River tributary beginning at its confluence and extending below its Interstate 29 bridge and the Big Sioux River from the Interstate 29 bridge to the con-fluence with the Missouri River with the exception of snagging Paddlefish and rough fish during the open season; 9. Des Moines River from directly below the hydroelectric dam (Big Dam) to the Hawkeye Avenue bridge in Fort Dodge; 10. Des Moines River from directly below the Little Dam to the Union Pa-cific Railroad bridge in Fort Dodge; 11. Skunk River, from directly below the Oakland Mills Dam to the downstream end of the 253rd Street boat ramp.

    Snagging, bow and arrow fishing and spear-ing is not permitted in the following areas:
    1. From the Ventura Grade roadway, jetties and bridges of Clear Lake and Ventura Marsh; 2. Within 300 feet of the concrete culvert and metal fish bar-rier of Lost Island Lake Inlet; 3. Within 300 feet of the outlet and metal fish barrier of Lost Island Lake Outlet; 4. Within 300 feet of the outlet and metal fish barrier of Barringer Slough; 5. Beginning at 230th Avenue and extending downstream to the signed Iowa Great Lakes Sanitary District property line of Lower Gar Lake outlet.

    • This reply was modified 7 months, 4 weeks ago by stick500 stick500.
    • This reply was modified 7 months, 4 weeks ago by stick500 stick500.
    AvatarAjax
    Participant
    Post count: 10

    There are restrictions on hook size and distance to certain dams as for snagging in Iowa. As for cooking them, I imagine you can do anything you would normally do with any other white, firm fish such as walleye, crappie, cod, etc. I am in Dubuque area and we ain’t got those critters up this far (yet!) Would love to shoot or snag some myself sometime. from the regs; Bow Fishing, Spearing & Snagging A valid sport fishing license lets you take Com-mon Carp, Bighead Carp, Silver Carp, Grass Carp, Black Carp, Bigmouth Buf- falo, Smallmouth Buffalo, Black Buffalo, Quillback, Highfin Carpsucker, River Carpsucker, Spotted Suck- er, White Sucker, Short- head Redhorse, Golden Redhorse, Silver Red- horse, Freshwater Drum, Shortnose Gar, Longnose Gar, Bowfin, Gizzard Shad and Goldfish by snagging, bow fishing and spearing and Paddlefish (p. 11) by snagging. You cannot use a hook larger than a 5/0 treble hook or measuring more than 1 1⁄4 inches long when two of the hook points are placed on a ruler. Snagging is not permitted in the following areas: 1. Des Moines River from directly below Saylorville Dam to Southeast 14th St. bridge in Des Moines; 2. Cedar River in Cedar Rapids from directly below the 5 in 1 Dam under I-380 to the 1st Ave. bridge; 3. Cedar River in Cedar Rapids from directly below the “C” St. Roller Dam to 300 yards downstream; 4. Iowa River from directly below the Coralville Dam to 300 yards downstream; 5. Chari- ton River from directly below Lake Rathbun Dam to 300 yards downstream; 6. Spillway area from directly below the Spirit Lake outlet to the conflu-ence at East Okoboji Lake; 7. Northeast bank of the Des Moines River from directly below the Ottumwa Dam, including the catwalk, to the Jefferson St. bridge. Snagging from the South Market St. bridge is also prohibited; 8. Missouri River, any Missouri River tributary beginning at its confluence and extending below its Interstate 29 bridge and the Big Sioux River from the Interstate 29 bridge to the con-fluence with the Missouri River with the exception of snagging Paddlefish and rough fish during the open season; 9. Des Moines River from directly below the hydroelectric dam (Big Dam) to the Hawkeye Avenue bridge in Fort Dodge; 10. Des Moines River from directly below the Little Dam to the Union Pa-cific Railroad bridge in Fort Dodge; 11. Skunk River, from directly below the Oakland Mills Dam to the downstream end of the 253rd Street boat ramp. Snagging, bow and arrow fishing and spear-ing is not permitted in the following areas: 1. From the Ventura Grade roadway, jetties and bridges of Clear Lake and Ventura Marsh; 2. Within 300 feet of the concrete culvert and metal fish bar-rier of Lost Island Lake Inlet; 3. Within 300 feet of the outlet and metal fish barrier of Lost Island Lake Outlet; 4. Within 300 feet of the outlet and metal fish barrier of Barringer Slough; 5. Beginning at 230th Avenue and extending downstream to the signed Iowa Great Lakes Sanitary District property line of Lower Gar Lake outlet.

    OK thanks, if I end up getting any I’ll post back here, I’d like to go out here asap but the weather isn’t cooperating. If anyone else has any advice or experience with catching Asian carp I’m all ears. Thanks to everyone that’s replied so far!

    AvatarHunt n fish
    Participant
    Post count: 46

    Anyone been snaggin at the hydro in ottumwa yet this winter?

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