Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Coldest Chicago June on Record : How it Relates to Perch

Well, we all know it, every time we go outside, not even mentioning a trip to lake Michigan, we wonder to ourselves: is it really June? It certainly seems like the calendar this year went something like : February, March, April, May, April...

50 degree days, something like 2 weeks straight of North/East winds, and constant drizzle and overcast is what we have been dealing with since the beginning of June.

It seems like this should keep the lake cool, but in fact...

The surface water temperature has been rising steadily for a while now. North East Winds have pushed all the warm surface water into the Chicago area.

According to the WGN weather center blog it's been the coldest Chicago June on record (something like 50 years of record keeping). Here is a Link to this article.

So in the last few days, I've seen numbers slow to a crawl. The dawn bite has gone from a strong 4:45-6:00 a.m. bite, dwindling to a 5:15-5:45 bite, and finally this morning to more like a 5:30-5:45 bite.

Further, when the Perch were really stacked in here I took a couple of high noon, heat of the day, direct sunlight trips to the harbor and proceeded to land or see landed one fish after another. It was as if the harbors held a cornucopia of these dinner delicacies.

For now, we'll wait, I've slowed my daily pursuit of perch down to a twice or thrice a week endeavor. This weekend we're due for some west winds (according to the forecasts). If we see this happen we might see the surface water pushed out toward the horizon, the cooler water from deeper, even below the thermocline could be forced to well up and fill the void left by the turbulent extraction of the 60 degree water on the top. I'll be keeping my fingers crossed for this, as it will likely bring the perch back into the harbors.

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