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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been making a few kayak trips down to the Chester River, and from time to time have been surprised by a random yellow perch, always pretty good size. Today was cool and cloudy, big fish bite was off for me, white perch were biting all day, and small stripers here and there. I noticed while paddling in the shallows lots of weed beds and in the pockets were lots of yellow perch, caught five total and could have caught more but was out there for almost 8 hours, and it was time to go. Just wondering if this is a normal occurence this time of year. They sure are pretty and were in the 10 to 12 inch range.

Fishnmusicn
 

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Yes it is normal for this time of year on the Chester River. If you want to try for some nice yellows and some other good fish, like maybe a white perch or rockfish, try the Langenfelter's Dock. The dock is close to Love Point about a mile to your left from Cloverfield Boat Ramp. Also might want to try Queen's Town Creek this time of year. You might be surprised what you catch in these two spots.
 

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Had them swimming around the flats during first split of duck, couldn't believe the clarity and the # of fish we surrounded ourselves with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yes it is normal for this time of year on the Chester River. If you want to try for some nice yellows and some other good fish, like maybe a white perch or rockfish, try the Langenfelter's Dock. The dock is close to Love Point about a mile to your left from Cloverfield Boat Ramp. Also might want to try Queen's Town Creek this time of year. You might be surprised what you catch in these two spots.
Thanks for the info, I heard Queen's Town Creek has pickerel in there as well? May be worth another trip if the fish stay in the creek with the weather coming up. We have yellow perch in some of the lakes around here in Pa, but they are generally smaller and harder to catch. My father lived in Rock Hall, so the spot I fished I'm very familiar with, but hadn't been down for 9 years - but 4 trips in the last month and a half, will be back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Had them swimming around the flats during first split of duck, couldn't believe the clarity and the # of fish we surrounded ourselves with.
It was unbelievable to me that on a cool cloudy day I happened to paddle up to a flat with little weedbeds and they were sitting in all the open spots, also they don't spook like stripers, but I still kept a stealth approach. Could have had a field day if I decided to stay a while.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Assuming the weather temps don't drop too much any time soon, do you think the perch will hold that shallow pattern for a while? Thanks in advance for any info you can provide. Those perch are fun!

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White perch are in deep water now. I don't think yellow perch ever go to deep water. I have caught then all winter in shallow water. I don't think I have ever caught a yellow perch in water more then 6 or 8 ft.
 

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White perch are in deep water now. I don't thing yellow perch ever go to deep water. I have caught then all winter in shallow water. I don't think I have ever caught a yellow perch in water more then 6 or 8 ft.
They go where the food goes. I've caught them in 80 feet of water. Like that's not a dead give away.
 

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Those are some nice YP. I have been picking up one or two neds on the last three trips. They do go where the bait is. There is one stream where they winter over that is no where more than eight feet and another river where they go 40 to 60 feet or more depending upon the temps and time of season. Guess we are probably fishing the same deep water areas. Last year, DNR had a screen shot of YP on their depth finder during one of their netting surveys. I think they were in 40 feet or so of water. The GPS coordinates showed them to be holding in the shipping channel between Grove Pt. and Wroth Pt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Wow, that is some deep water, and I know in lakes they go deep when it gets cold. I was very surprised as Monday was a cool bordering on cold day at the end of the day, and these perch were in water only 1 to 2 feet deep, "on the flats" - this was an area that had lots of healthy weed clumps, and in the open water pockets in the middle of the weeds the YP were sitting. I was surprised to see so many, maybe they are still relating to baitfish that hang around the weeds as well. Going to try again this Sunday if the weather allows, supposed to be somewhat windy though. In the calm water they were easy to see but will be different with the wind, have to anchor my sit on top. Think it might be a good opportunity for a jig and bobber setup, which I do real well with on crappies. Also picked up a few stripers while going for them but on the small side. Also figured out a little pattern for the stripers in water a little deeper. Every once in a while there would be a splash indicating a striper in this other general area. Just threw out a jig and grub and reeled in fast and got three stripers in a row, but again on the small side. White perch were hitting like crazy all day, but these yellow perch really had a nice size to them. Real treat for me since I don't catch them that often.
 

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"Real treat for me since I don't catch them that often."

For a real treat, take some home and fry them up, they are better on the table than white perch. Just don't try to scale them; fillet and skin them instead.
 

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Those are some nice YP. I have been picking up one or two neds on the last three trips. They do go where the bait is. There is one stream where they winter over that is no where more than eight feet and another river where they go 40 to 60 feet or more depending upon the temps and time of season. Guess we are probably fishing the same deep water areas. Last year, DNR had a screen shot of YP on their depth finder during one of their netting surveys. I think they were in 40 feet or so of water. The GPS coordinates showed them to be holding in the shipping channel between Grove Pt. and Wroth Pt.
Been getting a slow pick YP limit the last few weeks in northern western shore locations. Two to four feet deep close to reed beds & other shore structure on tubes, minnows & beetlespins. Picking up random larger YP trolling rattle traps for rock in eight to twelve feet in the same rivers.
 

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Awesome trip reports and really nice kayak fishing!

Yaks are especially effective in shallow, clear areas where fish spook easily and that sounds so cool to see lots of perch in the water. I have never seen that, it says a lot about the water quality and and the health of the perch population in the Chester.
 

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yes, yellow perch go deep. it is common to catch them 55ft. is the susqy. in Pa. The DNR advises to not fish deep (30ft.) because releasing yp caught from deep water can kill them. This month has been great in some rivers and slow in others. Yesterday , a friend of mine caught 40 with another fishermen on his boat up to 13.5 in.. About half were undersized. They kept 16 over 10 in.
 

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"Real treat for me since I don't catch them that often."

For a real treat, take some home and fry them up, they are better on the table than white perch. Just don't try to scale them; fillet and skin them instead.
You reminded me of this. I use to take fish to a old friend we all called Granfather. He was in his 90's. A farmer all his life. I gave him a mess of yellow perch and said to him, Grandfather you know they are real hard to scale. He said, I don't scale them. I just drop them in hot oil and the scales come to the top like little pearls. PS. I learned something today. I never knew that yellow perch went that deep. I still wouldn't fish for them in 80 feet of water when I catch them all winter in shallow water. Would like to see some deep water yellow perch reports from MD. Maybe from Deep Creek Lake. I have caught them while ice fishing on the North East River for bass, but still only about 15-20 feet.
 

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yes, yellow perch go deep. it is common to catch them 55ft. is the susqy. in Pa. The DNR advises to not fish deep (30ft.) because releasing yp caught from deep water can kill them. This month has been great in some rivers and slow in others. Yesterday , a friend of mine caught 40 with another fishermen on his boat up to 13.5 in.. About half were undersized. They kept 16 over 10 in.
I've seen a lot of YP pulled up from depths greater than 50 feet. I'm no biologist...... I imagine the reduced pressure towards the surface causes the air in the swim bladder to expand rapidly, sometimes causing it to rupture. I've witnessed some mortality. Ive Seen a large number of fish being caught in a concentrated area. The dead loss was not high compared to the quantity being caught. Pulling fish from great depths does increase the possibility of mortality, but I adopted a slower retrieve and rarely see the swim bladder up in the throat.
 

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A few years ago, I found a video on you tube that was titled" How to clean a yellow perch in 10 seconds". It was shown to the demonstrator by an indian tribesman from the Saint Lawrence River. .I couldn't manage to post the video, but about a month later, someone else found it and posted it. The method is very differen't from anything I've ever seen. No scaling, skinning or filleting. You end up with a sort of butterflied ,pan ready yellow perch that when cooked, the meat easily flakes loose from the skeleton. It's the best method I've seen yet for yellow perch.It takes me about a minute to clean one.I love them blackened with a salad. You will find it by typng in you search engine. How to clean a perch in 10 seconds (you tube)
 

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I prefer to catch them shallow where there is no chance of decompression, but I agree with mbarge, I have seen a lot of YP caught deep with surprisingly few floaters. I also slow the retrieve way down when bringing them up from deeper waters.

I saw that video but I still prefer to fillet and skin them. That way, I can "candle" them to make sure there are no worms embedded in the flesh.
 
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