The fall drawdown continues at Barren River Lake. The water level stood at 539.8 feet Wednesday morning and fishing was streaky.
I talked to some crappie fishermen who had been doing well and was told that catches were down from the limits of two weeks ago to daily catches of a half dozen or so.
The bass fishing was similar while most catches were of smaller fish. Most of them were being taken on crank baits.
Four of the Oldtimers fished the Cumberland River Monday and loaded up on nice rainbows. The trout were running good size, just under the slot with several 14-and-1/2 inchers, caught by trolling small colorful crank baits.
I received a note from Johnny Rush who said the trout fishing in the river was the best he had seen all year.
The top job in the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources is open and the agency is conducting a nationwide search to fill the post.
State law calls on the nine-member commission to appoint a commissioner to head the state agency charged with the protection and conservation of Kentucky’s wildlife resources.
“Without question, this is one of the premier jobs in the country for fish and wildlife professionals,” said Commission Chairman Stuart N. Ray. “Kentucky is home to multiple quality fisheries, nationally acclaimed deer, elk and wild turkey populations and a rich hunting and fishing heritage.
“Every member of this commission is committed to identifying and hiring the best person for this job.”
The commissioner works for the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Commission and has general supervision and control of all activities, functions, appointments and employees of the department.
The commissioner enforces all provisions of the laws of the state relating to wild animals, birds, fish and amphibians.
Barren County is in the 4th District, which is represented by Dr. James Angel of Greensburg. The commission will accept resumes through Dec. 31.
Anyone interested in the job should send a detailed resume to: Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources Commission, 1 Sportsman’s Lane, Frankfort, KY 40601.
In other KDFWR news, the agency is seeking input by means of an online survey regarding horsepower restrictions on several state-owned lakes.
“This survey is open for anyone to take,” said Jeff Ross, assistant director of fisheries for Kentucky Fish and Wildlife. “We want feedback from the public about changes to the boat motor restrictions.”
Currently, the following eight lakes have a 10 horsepower restriction on boat motors: Beaver Lake in Anderson County; Boltz Lake and Bullock Pen lakes in Grant County; Elmer Davis Lake in Owen County; Kincaid Lake in Pendleton County; Shanty Hollow Lake in Warren and Edmonson counties, and Swan Lake in Ballard County.
The information from the survey will help the KDFWR determine if these restrictions could be amended by allowing boats with motors larger than 10 horsepower to operate on some or all of these lakes at idle speed only.
The fisheries division mailed 2,000 of the surveys to random fishing license holders a few weeks ago. The online survey will close at midnight on Dec. 30.
To take this survey, visit the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife webpage at fw.ky.gov and click on the “Proposed Small-Lake Boat Motor Regulation Changes, Take the Survey” tab on the rotating banner in the middle of the page. The survey should take less than 10 minutes to complete.
Many bass fishermen believe the first cool winds of fall spur largemouth to move from deep water to shove their noses practically on the bank.
Now after the time change, with nightfall coming just after work, it is the best time of autumn to chase largemouth, especially on smaller, state owned lakes.
Early November through early December is a highly productive and misunderstood time for largemouth bass fishing.
“Right now, largemouth bass are following baitfish into the back ends of coves and against the bank and feeding heavily,” said Gerry Buynak, assistant director of fisheries for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources.
“Female largemouth bass in fall already have about three percent of their body weight in eggs for the spawn next spring.”