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Discussion Starter #1
First post in this section of the forum. I hit some semi high water Monday, targeting trout. Towards 5pm I headed up river in search of that distinct pink stripe but seen a big fat red Kokanee instead. I've never cought one and the girth was decent on the fish. I got it to hit on a 2 bit hooker after five passes. Fought harder then some of the rainbows that day. I've never had land locked salmon. Figured I take to eat sense I always catch and release and taking a soon to die salmon would be ok. I remember reading a comment on a FB group about how fisheries are not going to stock salmon anymore because of the gill lice. I decided to check the right gill and shur enough it had white looking sores. My question to you is it safe to eat a Kokanee with gill lice?
 

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They are a very common parasite. They dint affect trout but can be deadly to salmon. As long as you arent eating the head youll be fine
 

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Yes, it is OK to eat fish affected with gill lice, I've eaten some in the past and they didn't taste any different than un-infected fish. The fish pictured above will probably taste pretty strong(fishy), they are better smoked at this stage of the spawn.
 

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That is what I figured cut off the head. the trout I never take, I let them get bigger. My buddy told me to when the kokanee at that stage are to slimy that they are better off being brined then smoked. Well thanks for the info.
 

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Rainbows also can become infected with the lice. It seems more devastating to Kokanee because they swim more densely in schools and the parasites are more easily spread from fish to fish. White sores do not necessarily mean the fish have become infested. The lice look like white maggots and are quite obvious to identify. Infested fish are OK to eat. The state still is stocking salmon and will continue to do so. They (state) have stopped stocking Green Mountain altogether to clean up the lice and other issues that are seemingly more political that I will not get into. Other infested lakes like Williams Fork are still being stocked. Where was the fish caught?

The Kokes are mostly up against three environmental factors; Competition (mysis), Predation (lakers, walleye, pike), and Parasite (gill lice).

The kokes can thrive with none or one of the above but with more stuff against them the numbers and body condition suffer. Lakes/systems with all three, I believe, are the only ones not being stocked because the kokanee don't stand a chance.
 

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The Kokes are mostly up against three environmental factors; Competition (mysis), Predation (lakers, walleye, pike), and Parasite (gill lice).
Curious how mysis affect kokes?

Please explain.
 

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Curious how mysis affect kokes?

Please explain.
Mysis and Kokanee compete for the same food source. They both filter the water feeding zooplankton and algae.
 

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would have never guessed that.

thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yes they did look like 2 or 3 maggots stuck together. I haven't checked any trout for fear of hurting them. That is good to know they are stocking salmon. Thanks for the info helps me wrap my head around that stretch of water. Do you why a fish would have tumor looking lump that stretch of water ive pulled two out of there recently with a lump on its body. I asked the DOW one day when they were shocking fish coming down river from the dam, but feel like i got a shitty answer.

Rainbows also can become infected with the lice. It seems more devastating to Kokanee because they swim more densely in schools and the parasites are more easily spread from fish to fish. White sores do not necessarily mean the fish have become infested. The lice look like white maggots and are quite obvious to identify. Infested fish are OK to eat. The state still is stocking salmon and will continue to do so. They (state) have stopped stocking Green Mountain altogether to clean up the lice and other issues that are seemingly more political that I will not get into. Other infested lakes like Williams Fork are still being stocked. Where was the fish caught?

The Kokes are mostly up against three environmental factors; Competition (mysis), Predation (lakers, walleye, pike), and Parasite (gill lice).

The kokes can thrive with none or one of the above but with more stuff against them the numbers and body condition suffer. Lakes/systems with all three, I believe, are the only ones not being stocked because the kokanee don't stand a chance.
 

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Eat away. External parasites are not an issue. I'd be more concerned with meat infected with cysts. Just cook thoroughly and even this not a problem. Might change your mind when you see a ball of tapeworm come from a bass or cyst infected meat from crappie and bluegill. LOL

Here is an interesting study about a trophic cascade created by the introduction of Mysis. Something so small collapsed an entire system.

https://flbs.umt.edu/pdfs/Ellis PNAS 2011.pdf
 
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