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Mosy aggressive bed protector?

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The most aggressive river fish(salmonoid)?

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What's the most aggressive river-run fish on the beds?
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Male chinnie-hands down I have a collection of teeth I have pulled out of some bruisers that most people don't believe came out of kings, they all say sharks!
In my case, it was a 12+ lb male steelhead that mashed a floating black/gold rapala a couple years back. Wasn't paying attention and WHAM....zzzzzzzz......Snap....LOL
I'll never forget - YEARS ago, a hen was on a bed just below a bridge. She had about eight males all trying to be "the man". I put the appropriate amount of lead about two feet above a good sized Flatfish and lowered it to a position just behind her tail. Every time that she rolled on her side a male would try to move in, but the Flatfish was in the way. It wasn't long before the first male headed upstream, beyond the hen and under the bridge - out of sight. He reappeared sideways to the current, drifting with it, about five feet to the side of the hen and Flatfish. Just before he was parallel with the bait he used the current and all of his body and tail to SLAM the Flatfish. You had to hold on with both hands. Several of the males repeated this. I think that this is what happens when the jet/drift boats fish holding water, too. The fish don't just hit the bait. They use the current AND their strength to pound the bait - very different than the taps you get fishing eggs, or wigglers.
I hope your not asking which fish is more agressive on the beds to to fish for? No one should be fishing for bedding fish. They are spawing for a reason. That is just plain wrong and un-sportsman like.
why not fish for bedding fish?
Everone is under the assumption that this is a put and take fishery. That is only part true. There are many fish, expecially on Lk Mi, that are natural. Those fish need to spawn on their beds to pro-create. Natural fish are much smarter than planted fish and in return, usually are larger. Example: Hatchery fish is planted in a river. There is a small insect on the water across the stream. He goes and gets it. Little does that fish know he has exerted more energy than he will gain. It doesn't know any better from growing up in a tank and having people feed them with pellets. The natural fish knows not to waste his time crossing the river. That is just one example. If we let natural fish to thier thing were we didn't have to rely on planters, it would be a Better fisher. During the spawing season, Hatchery fish don't know the concept of natural dominance. The larger fish usually get the pick of better spawing areas. When natural fish move in to intimidate planted fish, they don't get it and stay. This means the Natural fish will have to find other areas to spawn that may affect the outcome of their offspring hatching. What will happen is the hatchery not-natually smart fish end up eventually overtaking the natural population. Now this is an extreme example, but it gets the point across
:rolleyes: :rolleyes:
I hope your not asking which fish is more agressive on the beds to to fish for? No one should be fishing for bedding fish. They are spawing for a reason. That is just plain wrong and un-sportsman like.
So you don't fish steelies in the spring when they are in the river, nor salmon in the fall? Should we fish for these fish in the lake? Really what they are doing is eating and preparing themselves for the spawn, so we wouldn't want to interupt that. I am just Kidding, but I don't really understand that logic. Doesn't the DNR base the guidelines on fish being planted, and are steelhead and salmon a native fish for Michigan? I know the answer with salmon, but what about steelies, were they introduced, or are they native?
salmonbum, are you willing to give me the boat and the gear? I'd love to fish em in the big lake, but not everyone can afford the gear to do so, when they are in the rivers it takes minimal of equipment and affords the average fisherman a change at a good fish.

I do not fish on the beds, as i personally just don't like that type of fishing, but I do fish them in deep holes in the river and fall back holes. But hey, as long as you're fishing legal, i got no problems with ya.

Is it OK to fish for bedding fish if the waters being fished cannot suppot natural reproduction, then?:confused: Or, is that still "un-sportsman" like?

No they are not native. Steelhead were introduced in 1860's in the Ausable River. Salmon were in the 1960's. Lake Trout is the only native trout to the great Lakes. The reason the DNR set guidelins for planting fish is beacuse they have to. The reason they have to is most people believe it is a "Put and Take fishery".

And no, I don't fish steelies in the Spring, or salmon in the Fall. I fish river kings in July and August, and steelies in fall and winter. I play all my fish with the motto "get 'em in quick, release em quicker. And I let every fish go in the rivers with the upmost care.
MSUICEMAN, I'm not saying fishing rivers are wrong, but fishing beds are. There are plenty of ways that a fish will hit in a river, but my personal belief is fishing them on beds is wrong. Let them do what they hafta do.

I know what your saying about Lake fishing them. Kinda hypocritical. The difference is that those fish in the lake are choosing to hit your bait, while fishing them on a bed usually leads to a strike due to a last resort of the fish constant aggrovation or being lined. Sure there a few instance that they hit right away, but again, that is all aggrovation. Nothing to do with being hungry if there on a bed. If you were Gettin your groove-on with the ol lady and someone walked in with a Big Mac, would stop what your doing and eat it, or get outta bed and kick is you know what?:D
The PM flies only stretch is a no kill on fish, and people still hammer the bedded fish. Not just the average guy either, but all of the orvis types to.

The rifle has had a small number of fish in it each spring for quite a few years, but since the plants have started the numbers have increased.

Someone should find out what percentage of our rivers sustain a natural reproduction. And what each river relies on, planted or natural.
Steelhead are certainly more stubborn. Those guys will do all they can to get back onto the bed. They'll lean against the current, and with your light tackle, there's not much you can do. Still, I'd rather have a rod pop at dusk on the big water. The rush of the big king peeling off line as the light dissappears is truly an awesome experience.

Until the DNR says that we're hurting our sport-fishery by hitting spawning fish, there's nothing wrong with hitting the beds. Perhaps if someone proves that the fish I'm going after in the AuSable river during the spring has a negative impact on the fishery in Lake Huron, then I'll reconsider my position on this. Until such proof, I'll continue legally fishing our great put-and-take fishery. Hopefully with such proof, they don't prove that my targeting species that are instinctively gorging themselves before the run is also harmfull to the fishery.
Man, this thread took a turn in the wrong direction. Fish the way you want as long as it's legal. Plain and simple. Salmonbum, I don't think that A_S was asking about fishing bed's. I would have to say that he was asking "in general." Fish do strike very aggresive in hole's too!!
That Cohos are a lot more agressive than Kings when they are in rivers - whether they are spawing or not.
Steelhead will bite better than Cohos or Kings overall.

With regards to fishing for bedding fish, I do not like to fish for Salmon or Steelhead on gravel, for the most part. None of them bite well when they are actively spawning, although you can get strikes here and there. I don't fish them, but if other people want to, that should be their choice, unless the regs are changed.
I agree that on rivers that support natural reproduction, fishing for bedding fish can harm wild fish populations - but there are not many rivers in the LP that support natural repro of Steelhead well. A lot more rivers support wild Salmon reproduction than Steelhead.
By the logic of a previous poster, why is it that the PM is such a popular river to fish for bedding Salmon and Steelhead? It DOES support wild Salmon and Steelhead (probably 1 of the top 2 or 3 rivers in the State that do) and has waters that exclude certain types of fishing and are Catch and Release only. So why is it that during the peak of the Salmon and Steelhead runs, you will find lots of sportsmen using the nicest/most expensive gear, and trying to catch bedding fish all through that area? If you have fished here, you know that many of the fish "caught" are foul hooked - either intentionally or by accident. I have heard rationalizations that "this actually protects the fish from meat fishermen, since the fish won't bite again for awhile," and the fish have to be released. I cannot buy into that at all, and anyone who truly advocates wild fisheries shouldn't either. If anyone really wants to protect wild fish, there should be sections of rivers designated as not-to-be fished during spawning seasons (and many designated Trout Streams fall into this category), so the fish can procreate as successfully as possible. I am not for this, but it is a logical thing to do for optimal natural reproduction of Salmon and Steelhead. It is done for Walleyes.
Without planting of Salmon and Steelhead, Michigan would not have any significant Salmon and Steelhead fishing, and a few rivers would be crammed full of anglers each Spring and Fall.
Keep in mind the the State of Michigan plants Salmon and Steelhead for the LAKE FISHERIES, for the most part. The fact that the fish migrate into rivers to spawn creates an INCIDENTAL FISHERIE. If anyone does not understand or believe that, please call a DNR fisheries biologist and discuss this with them. That is where I heard it.
Sorry if I'm getting a little heated guys, it's just a strong belief of mine, which I am entitled to. I do everything I can to help the fishery and there's nothing like watching fish on beds, undisturbed, doing what nature intended them to do.
Salmon Bum, I'm somewhat with you on your logic...IF...a river has the characteristics needed to allow fish to spawn, hatch, smolt, go live in the big lake for 2-5 yrs, and then return again to spawn. There aren't many rivers/streams that have those characteristics in Michigan, with temp. being the biggest factor in most cases.
Along those lines-if you are fishing July and August Kings in the rivers there is a damn good chance those rivers have natural reproduction to actually have the temp. to draw those fish in that early. (My favorite time to fish Kings is in the early summer on a "little" river). Guess what I don't understand is why you would want to fish those early fish and quite possibly the "wild" fish...maybe I missed something, but those Kings are in the river to spawn as well.
Getting heated is what this is all about! I rarely ever fish steelhead anymore, and almost never fish for salmon. I have to admit though one of my favorite things in this whole world to do is stand in the Ausable just below the High Banks, and fish for Steelies on the gravel. At times ther is a great bunch of guys down there, and everyone works together to enjoy themselves and catch fish. IT IS BEAUTIFUL MAN!!!! But now I spend to much time chasing muskies.
Grab a spawn rod in the fall and try catching a few of them salmon before they start to hit the beds. Small chunks of cured skein and a bobber on 6lb is the best. Im not even going much over a #6 vmc 9299 single with the bags Im tying. Now thats fun.. seeing a fish cruise up from the bottom and grab hold... bam! Fish on!!! Not having to say Im not sure... uhm yea no.. yaa.. noo.... ya its in the mouth!!

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