Home Forums Fishing General Fishing Forum Removal of dams and their effect on fish habitat

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  • Avatartchansler
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    We’re doing a little research.
    Do you believe the removals of dams on the Des Moines River has affected the quality of habitat for fish species whether that be positive or negative?
    Please provide your feedback regarding the effect of fishing habitat from the removal of dams along the Des Moines River in Northern Iowa.
    Avatarjchalstrom
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    Tailwater fishing has always brought success for fishermen. Bait fish are abundant and pooled together allowing gamefish to concregate fowards a food source. Removal of the dams disperses the food source and thus the species. Dams provide structure needed for fish. Anothe issue is accessibility. Dams provide a concentrated location for fishermen to find success on public land. Older fishermen with limited mobility can easily access a dam site knowing there is a decent chance of success.

     

    Dam removal may allow fish to travel upstream and disperse which is good for the multiplication of the species. However, the removal of dams does diminish structure and again, disperses the food source for game fish. The result is making fishing more like hunting as an angler will spend much more time finding suitable structure conducive to fishing. Furthermore, this dispersal will be such that fishing will simple not be accessible to most fishermen since private land will need to be breached in order to reach a river.

     

    If dams are removed, it would be advantageous to replace the old structure with new. Boulders, etc., to maintain an area that bait and game fish can congregate in an area that is accessible to the public.

    sparkiesparkie
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    ^^^^^ Well said ^^^^^

    Avatarropeknot
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    Dams for fishing is like, baiting under tree stands, it’s easier.  If you want structure, let the rivers revert to their natural state: meandering, natural holes below riffles and on curves, brush piles. Dams to control flooding(which they don’t), dams for hydro plants are OK, low water dams to just back up water are not OK.

    AvatarGreg 57
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    Dams back up water giving fish a place to go when summers are hot and the water levels drop to mere feet in the rivers and streams.

    If you are going to take the dams out put huge boulders in there place giving fish structure.

    AvatarCRIA1576
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    Dams for fishing is like, baiting under tree stands, it’s easier. If you want structure, let the rivers revert to their natural state: meandering, natural holes below riffles and on curves, brush piles. Dams to control flooding(which they don’t), dams for hydro plants are OK, low water dams to just back up water are not OK.

    Wholeheartedly agree.

    Tailwater fishing has always brought success for fishermen. Bait fish are abundant and pooled together allowing gamefish to concregate fowards a food source. Removal of the dams disperses the food source and thus the species. Dams provide structure needed for fish. Anothe issue is accessibility. Dams provide a concentrated location for fishermen to find success on public land. Older fishermen with limited mobility can easily access a dam site knowing there is a decent chance of success. Dam removal may allow fish to travel upstream and disperse which is good for the multiplication of the species. However, the removal of dams does diminish structure and again, disperses the food source for game fish. The result is making fishing more like hunting as an angler will spend much more time finding suitable structure conducive to fishing. Furthermore, this dispersal will be such that fishing will simple not be accessible to most fishermen since private land will need to be breached in order to reach a river. If dams are removed, it would be advantageous to replace the old structure with new. Boulders, etc., to maintain an area that bait and game fish can congregate in an area that is accessible to the public.

    Disagree.  If people want fishing to be easy, they can buy a box of fish sticks at the grocery store.  Anglers SHOULD be expected to be willing to spend the  time needed to learn how to find and catch fish.  That is why it is called fishing, not catching.  Anglers with disabilities have immediate access to excellent fishing opportunities in public areas that have designated piers and jetties.  These provide safe and comfortable areas to fish without the inherent risk of fishing below dams in tailrace areas that are most often covered in jagged and sometimes slippery rocks.

    I agree that wherever it makes sense, the DNR and army corps should continue adding structure and improving surrounding watersheds to enhance water quality, similar to what was done on the Raccoon River below Lake Panorama.  Improving water quality benefits all fish species, and the anglers that target them.  That is not the same thing as adding structure just to make fishing easy for people.

     

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