The past few years the bass numbers seem to be down in the snake river by burley. Are you still planting bass here?
We have not stocked bass into Milner Reservoir for quite some time. We have sampled this fishery over the past few years and have not documented a decrease in fish numbers and fish sizes – but there is the public perception something has recently changed.
We are not discounting your observations, but our sampling data does not support a decline in bass numbers. Our sampling effort was intended to document the bass population response to the 5 years drawdown that occurred in 2011. Drawing the reservoir down each year and then to a larger degree every 5 years will have an effect on bass, bass forage, and vegetation. It is not a big leap to think this management strategy is having a negative effect upon the bass population, but we have not been able to document this impact.
Please contact the regional office if you have additional questions or require more details. (208-324-4359