Juniata River

Commission biologists surveyed the Juniata River between Lewistown and Millerstown during 17 nights in April and early May using boat electrofishing gear.  Smallmouth bass, which were the target species of this survey, were sampled in excellent numbers.  A total of 782 smallmouth 12" or larger were captured, yielding a catch rate of 22.4 smallmouth/hr.  Of these bass 319 (41%) exceeded 15", producing a catch rate of 9.1 smallmouth/hr.  The largest smallmouth handled exceeded 21" and weighed 4.9 pounds.

Walleye were also present in good numbers, with 152 captured (4.4 walleye/hr).  Sixty-nine of these (45%) were 15" or longer, and 13 (19% of legal walleye) exceeded 20".  The largest walleye captured was 26.5" and weighed 5.5 pounds.  The good news for anglers is that of the sub-legal walleye, most were over 13" and should attain legal length during 1999.

Several muskellunge were sampled as well, ranging in size from 10" to 46".  Although not counted or measured, rock bass were observed in good numbers with some quality-sized individuals, as well as several large channel catfish (over 20").  Many large carp were noted, with some in excess of 30".

A surprise was the large number of brown trout observed, including some trophy-class individuals.  It is believed these trout moved into the river from cold-water tributaries during the winter and will relocate back into these tributaries as water temperatures warm in the Juniata.

-- Coldwater Unit

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