When the first salmon were stocked in Lake Michigan to control the overabundant alewife population, no one knew what would happen. The alewife, an invasive species that migrated into the lakes from the Atlantic Ocean once the shipping lanes were established, exploded in population.
Though they only live a few years, once they became established, trillions of them died from natural causes each summer and their little bodies drifted with the ever changing winds fouling beaches all around Lake Michigan.
The solution? Stock cohos. Would it work? Time would tell.
It worked. And the first indication was when commercial fishermen with gill nets set to catch yellow perch in Indiana started catching “funny looking trout” in the spring. The funny fish turned out to be coho salmon.
What wasn’t known then but is well documented now is that cohos prefer water temperatures around 50 degrees. In a lake like Lake Michigan, which is 300 miles long, the north end cools faster than the south end. As the lake cools in autumn, the baby cohos stocked from hatcheries months earlier migrate south to stay in water temperatures to their liking.
By late November, all the salmon in the lake have pushed to the south end of the lake. Indiana’s end of the lake. The part of the lake where I work.
And when winter ends, they are still here. Millions of them.
When the nearshore waters start to warm in March, they swarm inshore offering the hottest and fastest salmon fishing in the world. That’s why you need to get out there with your own boat or hire me to take you. Where’s the best place to fish? Where the fish are!
Spring break is the perfect time to hit the water. Most schools schedule their breaks in late March and early April and that’s the peak of the season time to be out for Indiana’s “spring coho” bonanza. My spring break dates are already filling. If you want to sign on, give me a call soon. Don’t wait, don’t be late. I’ll be there with you or some other person. I’d rather be with you. Go to www. brother-nature.com for contact info and prices.