Cisco, Northern (Tullibee) FP4LifesDad

Photo: 

Species:

Location: 
Ottertail Lake
Date Caught: 
Tuesday, December 29, 2015
Notes: 
We got on some sweet Cisco action tonight, cold but fun. FP figured out how to catch them and we caught a nice group of them in about 1/2 hour or so! We were both thrilled! Can't wait to smoke them up and dig in!
Strains, Subspecies, and Hybrids: 

Comments

andy's picture

Nice job with the ciscos. What was the trck to catching them?  Man I love smoked ciscos.....mmmmmm...

FP4LifesDad's picture

Thanks Andy

We were trying to find eelpout for our lifelists and found these instead (and only at night) swimming right in the open water of the river mouth.  They wouldn't touch the last of our years nightcrawlers or jigs, so he switched over to a crappie set up with a bobber and a waxworm on a plain tiny hook and started casting out for them, like you fish for crappies in the summer. Then it was one after another.  The only issue was the air was so cold standing out there the lines started freezing up..........oh, and our fingers!  I've never had them before, but everyone says they are delicious smoked, we did pan fry a few small ones last night in garlic and butter, those were very tasty, the rest are prepped for smoking.

andy's picture

That's an incredible story!  From what I know ciscos generally congregate around shallow gravel and river mouths just before freeze-up to spawn.  This is when recreational netters and seiners target them at night.  Very interesting to hear that you still ran into large numbers of them spawning this late in the year.

 

I would love to run into that situation some day.

Mike B's picture

Good Job! Our cisco run starts at the end of September and generally through all of October. These are dwarf ciscoes though -- never more than seven inches -- and they rarely bite anything. I gotta get some wax worms for next year.

mike b

FP4LifesDad's picture

Thanks fellas,

Ya it was really cool watching them, it was shallow and clear and they were swimming everywhere, but only after dark.  I stopped by during the day several times, and there were no fish in sight, not even a minnow lol.  But after dark they moved in there by the hundreds, there was just enough light you could see them flashing all over the place.  Its been a weird year Ottertail froze up, then opened up, and now froze up again about a week ago, ice is still sketchy all over the lake, a few ATVs and lots of portables out there yesterday, I'm hearing 5-7 inches now but still some bad spots, Rush lake up until a day ago had an open water spot right out in the middle, not good ice so far this year and I don't care for ice  baths haha

Mike B's picture

You know, if you have lake whitefish in that lake they should be in the river too. They spawn around the same time as ciscoes.

mike b

FP4LifesDad's picture

I didn't know that, thanks for the info man.  FP and I both need to catch some for our lifelists, Ottertail doesn't have any lake whitefish (supposdedly) but according to the DNR Molly Stark does, I'll have to research it and see where they might be, otherwise there are some in the lakes by Brainerd, Hmmm............road trip.  Thanks again.