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High Point Lake - Somerset County
April 28 - May 2, 2003
Sampling Gear: 20 trap net sets


High Point Lake is a 338-acre PFBC impoundment in southern Somerset County near Mount Davis, the highest point in Pennsylvania. Panfish Enhancement Regulations for yellow perch were implemented at the lake in 2000. All the other fish species at High Point Lake are managed under statewide regulations. The PFBC stocks walleye fingerlings annually at High Point Lake. We surveyed High Point Lake as part of a statewide study of the Panfish Enhancement Regulations that have been implemented on a number of waters across the state.

Northern Pike
Northern Pike

Nine walleyes from 20 to 25 inches long and 39 northern pike from 10 to 38 inches long were collected during the 2003 trap net survey. All of the 9 walleyes in 2003 were legal fish with the largest walleye going 25 inches and 4.3 pounds. All but 3 of the 39 pike were less than 24 inches. The largest pike was 38 inches long and weighed 20 pounds. The 2003 trap net catch of walleye and northern pike was low due to the timing of the survey (late April) and warmer water temperatures (54F to 59F). The walleye and pike were already done spawning by the time we surveyed the lake this year. A fish survey during late March/early April would have produced more walleyes and pike in the trap nets at High Point Lake.

Walleye
Walleye

The yellow perch catch in 2003 was lower than it was during our last survey in 1998. A total of 124 yellow perch from 3 to 14 inches long were captured in the trap nets. Twenty-three percent were 9 inches or greater, which are legal-sized perch under the Panfish Enhancement Regulations. Similar to the walleye and northern pike catch, the yellow perch catch was low due to the timing of the survey (late April) and warmer water temperatures (54F to 59F). We saw only a few ripe males and a couple of females with eggs. We will return to High Point Lake in 2005 and 2007 as part of the statewide Panfish Enhancement Regulations study and plan on sampling at a more optimal sampling time for yellow perch (late March to early April).

Yellow Perch
Yellow Perch

The black crappie catch of 187 fish at High Point Lake was higher than the crappie catch from previous surveys in 1978, 1989, 1996, and 1998. The crappies ranged from 5 to 14 inches long with 93% greater than 9 inches. The 2003 catch of quality-sized crappie (9 inches or greater) was also higher than in 1978, 1989, 1996, and 1998. Bluegills were available in good numbers and quality sizes in 2003. The majority (55%) of the bluegills were 7 inches or greater.

Black Crappie
Black Crappie

Brown bullheads were the most abundant fish captured in the trap nets in 2003. A total of 958 brown bullheads were collected and ranged in size from 5 to 14 inches with 96% greater than 10 inches. High Point Lake would be an excellent lake to fish for bullheads.

Mt Davis Elevation Sign
Mt Davis Elevation Sign

High Point Lake provides good angling opportunities for largemouth and smallmouth bass, walleyes, northern pike, yellow perch, black crappies, bluegills, and bullheads. We were unable to assess the bass population during the 2003 trap net survey; however, prior year surveys revealed a good bass population. Night electrofishing is the primary gear we use to assess bass populations in lakes.

Fish Species Number
Collected
Size Range
(Inches)
Additional Comments
Walleye 9 20 - 25 All Legal Fish
Northern pike 39 10 - 38 8% greater than 24 in.
Chain pickerel 1 20  
Yellow perch 124 3 - 14 23% greater than 9 in.
Black crappie 187 5 - 14 93% greater than 9 in.
Bluegill 224 2 - 10 55% greater than 7 in.
Pumpkinseed 17 4 - 8  
Rock bass 7 5 - 10  
Brown bullhead 958 5 - 14 96% greater than 10 in.
Yellow bullhead 4 8 - 10  
Largemouth bass 4 13 – 20  
Smallmouth bass 1 16  
White sucker 3 Not measured  
Common carp 1 Not measured  
Golden shiner 16 Not measured  

-- Area 8


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