Recent Fish Habitat News - artificial fish habitat

A Critical Look At Artificial Fish Habitat:

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A Critical Look At Artificial Fish Habitat:

Posted: 24 Mar 2021 10:56 AM PDT

When considering fish habitat, I think we need to discuss the role artificial fish habitat can serve. They're being used more and more, especially in large southern reservoirs devoid of important structure fish need. Fish managers have traditionally placed bundles of Christmas or cedar trees on the lake bottom to provide cover for fish. Because the lifespan of tree bundles and brush piles is limited, replenishing them has always been an ongoing and expensive process. One advantage of artificial habitat structures that help explain their growing popularity is that they don't decay or deteriorate.

But can “anything” man-made be placed in our waters and be called fish habitat? If we throw a rusty wheelbarrow into a lake today and catch a fish on it next week, can we genuinely say we’ve added fish habitat and therefore improved the lake? Are we unknowingly turning our lakes into landfills or the equivalent of the town dump under the guise of creating fish habitat? Is it really true that any structure of any kind is better than nothing? If you’ve ever wondered if there’s any discernible line between “junk” and authentic fish habitat, you wouldn’t be alone.

If there’s any hope of understanding the potential benefits using artificial fish habitat might offer, I think we need to uncouple two terms: Fish habitat and fishing. Effective fish habitat needs to protect young fish too small to be of interest to anglers. The metric to evaluate how useful fish habitat is must be re-calibrated. The question shouldn’t be how many trophy bass did you catch this year on the habitat, but how many young-of-the year bass survived the brutal gauntlet of their first year of life because of the protection that habitat provided.

It could be argued that the most successful fish habitat would be one that only attracted age 0 fish and was a lousy fishing spot. As anglers, we need to modify our point of view. Fish habitat should be regarded as an investment in the hope of a better day’s fishing in the future, not something with instant payoffs today. If fish habitat isn’t a vehicle for fish recruitment, what good is it?

Today, there isn’t a single designer of any artificial fish habitat that doesn’t promise their product or design will protect young fish. These are merely assertions that haven’t met their burden of proof. These claims must be demonstrated before we have warrant to accept them as true. Where is the evidence that any assemblage of man-made parts and scrap material does anything to help even a single fish survive its first year, let alone to adulthood? So far, Fishiding is the only design that has continuously and consistently documented in hundreds of underwater pictures and videos over the years the efficacy of their product.

If you work in the fish management sector, you should absolutely demand evidence that whatever artificial habitat you’re considering spending resources on legitimately works. As condescending as it may sound, intuition or gut feeling is not evidence. If we’re not more careful about scrutinizing and properly evaluating artificial fish habitat, we run the risk of unknowingly crossing what should be a distinct line between what authentic habitat is and what’s simply junk.

The Science Behind Fishiding Artificial Fish Habitat: (Part 9 of 10)

Part Nine: Modular Habitat Complexes as Large as City BlocksAs we better understand how to create and assemble habitat components that work best together, we now also see the need to scale the overall complex size accordingly. Habitat installations are vulnerable to all kinds of unique forces underwater. Installation of multiple habitat pieces in one [...]

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The Science Behind Fishiding Artificial Fish Habitat (Part 10 of 10)

Part Ten: Putting it all together-Top takeaways from our ten part series: Protection is the key: If the habitat structures are designed and installed in a way that don’t reduce the attack to capture ratio, they provide no benefit for forage species and consequently won’t hold any fish at all. Effective fish habitat must [...]

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The Science Behind Fishiding Artificial Fish Habitat (Part 8 of 10)

Part Eight: A Revolutionary New Design In recent years, many new types of artificial fish habitat and various fish attractor styles have been installed from coast to coast. State agency fish managers and the fisheries industry as a whole, are using them to strategically enhance cover where natural habitat is at a premium. [...]

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The Science Behind Fishiding Artificial Fish Habitat (part 7 of 10) Underwater Video

 Part Seven: The Future of Artificial Fish HabitatIn studying much of the available online literature written about artificial fish habitat, we’ve noticed a curious thing. Often times, the makers of artificial habitat, both the store bought and “homemade” variety, boast about their effectiveness and performance by comparing them to Christmas trees. Using Christmas trees [...]

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The Science Behind Fishiding Artificial Fish Habitat-Time Lapse Video (Part 6 of 10):

Part Six: How to determine if your habitat is working-Over the last decade, artificial fish habitat has been placed in hundreds of waters from coast to coast, but astonishingly there has been little evidence provided that they live up to the claims made by their installers. We continue to ask, where are all the pictures, [...]

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The Science Behind Fishiding Artificial Fish Habitat-Underwater Video (Part 5 of 10)

Part Five: Location and placement-After design, the single most important aspect of creating successful artificial habitat that fish will use is location. In testing Fishiding habitat, we’ve spent a great deal of time studying placement and there seems to be three obvious but often overlooked tenets that can make the difference between success and failure. [...]

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The Science Behind Fishiding Artificial Fish Habitat-Underwater Video (Part 3 of 10)

Part Three: Taking Cues from NatureHuman beings like their world to be tidy, neat, and straight. We mow our lawns to look like the 18th green at Pebble Beach. The rooms in our homes are perfectly rectangular. We even park parallel to each other. On our farms, the corn is planted and grown in flawlessly [...]

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The Science Behind Fishiding Artificial Fish Habitat-Time Lapse Video (Part 2 of 10)

Part 2Part Two: IntegrationThere’s no such thing as a single artificial habitat that does it all. That’s why Fishiding habitat comes in various and many different design models. Each habitat model is conceived to achieve a specific purpose or to serve in a specific range of depth. In this time-lapse video, you see several of [...]

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The Science Behind Fishiding Artifical Fish Habitat-Time Lapse Video (Part 1 of 10)

The Science Behind Fishiding Artificial Fish Habitat (part 1 of 10):By David Ewald & Eric EngbretsonPart One: How They WorkFishiding Artificial Fish Habitat isn’t designed in and of itself to attract game fish. Instead, its purpose is to provide indispensable cover for juvenile and YOY fish. It’s this congregation of juvenile and forage fish that [...]

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