Sunday, October 16, 2011

David Reyes Tequila and Fish Stocking

On Friday, I was working on figuring out a very intensive fish mgmt plan on a very interesting lake up near Victoria, Il. The goal of this 15 acre lake is to carry world class caliber fish of multiple species. Typically its very easy to create a trophy fishery of one or two species of fish with a couple bonus species here and there, but this lake is different. The goal of this lake is to create trophy fisheries all in the same body of water for Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Hybrid Striped Bass, Walleye, Tiger Muskie, Crappie, Bluegill, Catfish, and Rainbow Trout.

Not an easy task, but possible. I've been scratching my head the last couple nights thinking about the exact ways to achieve this specialized fishery for this exact situation. I do my best thinking when I am about 70% sleeping and 30% partially conscious.

Anyhow, the lake we have been working on for a couple years and the backbone infrastructure is in place with some big fish already, but now the plan is to go way beyond natural management strategies and capacities and really create a showcase lake.

Here are some pics from this lake over the years:

So while I am there I meet an interesting fella in town from Mexico. The guys name is David Reyes and after a few minutes of conversation I found out he grows Agave's down in Mexico on his families land and they produce the finest Tequila in the entire world!

I actually have never tasted Tequila before so I wouldnt know what is good tequila or what is bad tequila, but I figured this had to be good tequila if it costs $100 for just a small little glass full. Anyhow, here is a picture of one of his aqave fields down in Mexico. Supposedly the agaves are farmed organically and grow for 8 years before they can be harvested for this tequila.

Here is a picture of David Reyes himself explaining to me the tequila making process. Some day when people are singing songs on the radio about David Reyes tequila like they do Jose Cuervo and Jack Daniels, I can tell my kids and grandkids that I actually met the man himself!

So moving back into the week, we stocked lots of fish into lots of lakes and ponds all over central Illinois and Missouri. We finished most all of our trout stockings for the year, and gave thousands of smallmouth, largemouth, catfish, and hybrid bluegills new homes as well.

That brings me to another interesting story from the week. I was putting in some special strain of pure genetic bluegills I had raised for a fishing club that has 8 lakes on it when the guy said, hey you gotta come up here and check out my lake that you stocked 3 years ago. He said that he guaranteed me that he would catch 3 big yellow perch in the first 5 minutes right from his dock.

I figured the moment he said that we would see exactly zero perch, but low and behold on his first cast he reals in a 9 inch perch. Second cast a 10 inch perch, third cast nothing and 4th cast another 9 incher. I was pretty excited as we talked strategy for this lake. He said he regularly catches 30-40 perch per outing with the biggest well over a lb each and 12-13 inches long!!!

Back to the fish stocking subject, we will be stocking tons of walleye, pike, perch, and muskie in the next coming weeks. We still have pretty much every species still available, but what I have a surplus of and really need to find new homes for is northern pike 16-24 inches long. Right now I have 50 extra pike that are 2 years old and that have an average weight of 1.5-2.0 lbs each. The absolute most perfect sizes for stocking into lakes with existing predators!

Send me an email to or call me up at 309-303-5691 if you could find a home for some of these fish for me.

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