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Regarding the noted warmer temps on the lower river, the most obvious culprit after doing a little comp research are the tribs entering the river below the dam.  September 2018 was very wet, and very warm.  There were three major events this past Fall where flows in the area were between 10-80 cfs per sq. mile.  It is worth noting that the below dam watershed at Eggleston Falls is around 200 sq. miles which is almost as much as the river above the Philpott dam. 

If the Meadow River in WV can put an end to the trout fishery in the Upper Gauley canyon in WV due to the influx of warm water, then the drainage below Philpott can surely do the same, particularly if experiencing flows 3x-5x higher than normal at the same time record September warmth is being experienced.  It should also be noted that the warmest discharges from Philpott occur in late September.  I dare say the changes in the upper river are correlation, and are completely unrelated to the issues at the lower river.

Browns aren't walleye or flatheads, and are probably not fond of feeding in carrot soup colored waters at 5000 cfs on the Smith.  I have serious doubts that the lack of weight observed has anything to do with the amount of forage available on the lower river, but has more to do with the lack of access of forage due to muddy, warm, and high water.
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I wasn't napping and I was there during all but one of the samples and of course if you looked closely at the slides you can see when they did the stomach samples it took place at my place. (My wife is still wondering how I caught all those trout I brought home)

My impression was about the same as explained in detail by George Palmer - Upper river is doing fine with the constant flows and even with only one turbine the water is remaining cool enough. The lower river is a different story - one turbine is not pushing enough cold water downstream. Combine that with unusually warm days and the fish down there are in an almost constant state of stress. We did not shock up as many in the lower river as in the past and those we did collect were not as fat.

Mudwall mentioned lack of forage fish noted in the stomachs - true but from talking to the DGIF crew that may have been becasue small bait fish are digested much faster than snails and crawfish. I know the ones we could identify were looking more like a blob of nothing than a bait fish.

One thing for sure - with only one turbine the periods of generation are almost 24/7 that makes for poor wading. From what I have heard via COE that is not going to change anytime soon.  May be time for some of you guys to invest in a raft.
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My takeaway was you need to tie up up some articulated hivis parachute tungsten pmd stonecray cdc flymphs. Size 8-20.

Or keep napping.

Sent from my LG-US998 using Tapatalk

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My bad, I did not listen to the 57+ minute presentations; I only looked at the ppt.




like you got anything better to do....
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Quote
Did I miss some “diet” stuff in the presentation?

I don't think I've met a retiree yet that didn't nap half the day away.  Take a look at the 34 minute mark of the presentation.  Diet discussion.  You must have drifted off for a minute.  My take away is that the crawfish seem to be doing better (higher temps?).  Many of the browns sacrificed in the name of science had crawfish in their gut.  This is a big change from the past.  Still not many baitfish showing up though.  If I remember correctly, aquatic critters #1 food source, #2, neck and neck were terrestrials and crawfish.  Sound right Dougy?

My bad, I did not listen to the 57+ minute presentations; I only looked at the ppt.   I just listened to the 34+ minute mark discussing diet.   Thank you Fin! 
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Quote
Did I miss some “diet” stuff in the presentation?

I don't think I've met a retiree yet that didn't nap half the day away.  Take a look at the 34 minute mark of the presentation.  Diet discussion.  You must have drifted off for a minute.  My take away is that the crawfish seem to be doing better (higher temps?).  Many of the browns sacrificed in the name of science had crawfish in their gut.  This is a big change from the past.  Still not many baitfish showing up though.  If I remember correctly, aquatic critters #1 food source, #2, neck and neck were terrestrials and crawfish.  Sound right Dougy? 
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Thank you J, for opening the wound even more, with the recap of my now unattainable retirement dreams.  Santa does not think you are naughty or nice.  He just thinks you are a peckerwood.   


Any time pal!
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If Fin was in the audience, I bet he asked about diet.  Doug was drinking/ingesting, Al was napping, the Boss was well-oiled, over-oiled  ----  so, I may never get a response.
   
The synergy of an impending first grandson, the encircling of conservatives whom all have made a Faustian bargain with our chief, the unwelcomed holiday gobbledygook, and a Mrs. begging for a new floor has dampened my resolve.

Thank you J, for opening the wound even more, with the recap of my now unattainable retirement dreams.  Santa does not think you are naughty or nice.  He just thinks you are a peckerwood.   
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I am still searching for those brookie retirement Shangri-Las.  New reaches of familiar streams and new watersheds are paying dividends.   Several small and medium brookies and rainbows lower down made a hot August Sunday morning enjoyable.  Mother Nature’s slice of the Allegheny Highlands is providing numerous settings to hide from the Mrs. when we retire.   
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<Upper SR overall condition of brown trout seems much improved and appears diets are changing.>

  This seems like the most enthralling information.  Did I miss some “diet” stuff in the presentation?  Again I will ask - what did the biologist say – did anyone contribute to or question the changing diet statement?  Are there data, even anecdotal evidence, suggesting the shift in diet of the upper fishes?   Surely someone at the meeting asked, or were you tanked-up or exceedingly somber over the lower river news or both, or during the summary were you dreaming, fantasizing of downriver monster browns, cleaning your sink-tips, and tying lures that could be cast on any ultra-light spinning outfit?

Go fish a brookie stream.
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