Biologist reports logo Mauch Chunk Lake

Carbon County
April-June, 2004

Mauch Chunk Lake is a 330-acre impoundment located near the town of Jim Thorpe in Carbon County. Big Bass regulations were implemented for the 1997-fishing season. All other species are managed under Commonwealth Inland Waters regulations. Boating is permitted, electric motors only.

Biologists from the Area 5 fisheries management office surveyed Mauch Chunk Lake with trapnets between April 28 and May 5, 2004. The bass fishery was assessed via night boat electrofishing on June 7 and 21, 2004, additional assistance was provided by Fisheries Management Area 6. Spring trapnet catch rates were low for all species, although quality sized individuals were present.

April Trapnetting
Species Size Range (inches) Number Caught Comments
Black crappie 2-12 73 64% were 8 inches or greater
Bluegill 2-9 128 72% were 6 inches or greater
Pumpkinseed 6-9 39  
Rock bass 7-10 4  
Green sunfish 5-7 2  
Largemouth bass 6-22 6 One was of legal size
Yellow bullhead 7-12 15  
Channel Catfish 26 1  
White sucker 18-20 2  
Chain pickerel 19 2  
Yellow perch 6-12 20 80% were 8 inches or greater
Walleye 22-24 4  
Forage Species
Golden shiner 8-9 3  
Night Boat Electrofishing
Largemouth bass 3-22 295 4 were of legal size, the 22 in.
bass weighed 6 lbs and 1 oz.

The largemouth bass population continues to do well. Waterways Conservation Officer Christman for Carbon County continues to report positive angler satisfaction. His reports were further supported by comments from anglers encountered during this survey. Although the number of largemouth bass 15 inches and over remains low, the number of bass between 12 and 15 inches has remained more stable and higher than during the pre-Big Bass regulation era.

Average Catch per Unit Effort (#/hr) of Largemouth bass in Mauch Chunk Lake
  Pre Big Bass Post Big Bass
CUE (#/hr) 1989 1990 1991* 1992 1998 1999* 2001 2004
Total 70.8 117.5 56.8 54.9 78.1 55.5 96.9 49.3
>= 12 in. 4.8 12.1 5.9 12.4 11.1 10.8 18.3 12.7
>= 15 in. 0.4 0.7 0 1.0 0.8 1.2 1.6 0.7
*Severe Drought Years
 
-- Dave Arnold, Area 5 Fisheries Manager

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