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8/31/2016 6:31 am  #1


American Eel in the Park

I've read in the past that Algonquin (I think in the AP fish brochure) was historically a spawning and rearing area for the American Eel, which travelled upriver from Lake Ontario and east to the Atlantic.  I'm not sure what the current situation is, but I'm 99% sure I saw 2 of them on Booth Lake on Monday.
Has anyone else seen them, or know if Booth should have them?  This is a first for me. 

 

8/31/2016 6:56 am  #2


Re: American Eel in the Park

That would be a remarkable feat for an eel...I believe there are at least three dams downstream of that point that they would have had to jump over.  

What did they look like?  Size, color, environment seen in?

 

8/31/2016 8:39 am  #3


Re: American Eel in the Park

Dams would keep them out of Booth. 

Also to clarify, American Eel's spawn in the mid-Atlantic in the Sargasso Sea. The decline of American Eels in Ontario has a lot to do with the dams that now obstruct the migration of Eels from the ocean to the inland waters in Ontario.

 

8/31/2016 8:57 am  #4


Re: American Eel in the Park

Hey Rob, that's true, I remember watching something on that.  The Sargasso Sea is apparently the only place in the world that they spawn.  So, the question is, how old would the ones I saw have to be since it's impossible for them to reach Booth now?  Or is it possible for them to spawn there as well?  
From the size and description, they would have to be males if they were mature.
I think I should report this as requested on the linked site.

https://www.ontario.ca/page/american-eel

     Thread Starter
 

8/31/2016 9:03 am  #5


Re: American Eel in the Park

As American Eels move upstream, they often have to navigate around obstacles. Eels can climb over rocks, dams, and even waterfalls.They have the ability to absorb oxygen throught their skins to breathe. This allows them to survive out of water for several hours. If an eel is found doing this, it is most often on a damp, rainy night.Eels can also travel by underground waterways. This explains how eels are found inponds that don't have a stream leading to it.

     Thread Starter
 

8/31/2016 9:36 am  #6


Re: American Eel in the Park

Most likely these.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_mudpuppy

I have seen several mudpuppies over the years and have caught a couple while ice fishing on Georgian Bay, but I had no idea that could move as fast as an eel or fish when necessary.

 

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8/31/2016 9:41 am  #7


Re: American Eel in the Park

That would be quite the trip. To get from the Ottawa the Eels would have to navigate about a dozen dams. Some small like the ones in APP but a couple of them like the Bark Lake and Kaminskeg Lake dams are huge. ~60 feet high.

 

8/31/2016 9:56 am  #8


Re: American Eel in the Park

MartinG wrote:

That would be quite the trip. To get from the Ottawa the Eels would have to navigate about a dozen dams. Some small like the ones in APP but a couple of them like the Bark Lake and Kaminskeg Lake dams are huge. ~60 feet high.

 No doubt, but they used to be quite common in Algonquin and they live 80+ years, so I assume they are still there in pockets.  However, I'm convinced that they were fast moving mudpuppies, although I've never seen them move that fast before!

     Thread Starter
 

8/31/2016 10:19 am  #9


Re: American Eel in the Park

This is fascinating from an ecological standpoint but it's exceptionally terrifying from a personal, fear of slimy things in the water standpoint (there is no reasoning with this fear. It is deep and completely illogical). 

I do hope that I will have forgotten all about this by the time I am next in the Park! http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/happy.png

 

8/31/2016 10:48 am  #10


Re: American Eel in the Park

CanoeClaire wrote:

This is fascinating from an ecological standpoint but it's exceptionally terrifying from a personal, fear of slimy things in the water standpoint (there is no reasoning with this fear. It is deep and completely illogical). 

I do hope that I will have forgotten all about this by the time I am next in the Park! http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/happy.png

LOL!  I suspected that may be the reaction by some people.  Don't camp or swim by marshy areas in the park - they're alive with all kinds of slimy creatures! Maybe they were just oversized leeches
 

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8/31/2016 12:01 pm  #11


Re: American Eel in the Park

How big were the ones you saw Sean?  Even if they were 'just' mudpuppies, never observed one in open water before.

Agreed there isn't much worse when ice fishing than thinking you have another tasty perch on the way to add to the pile and seeing a mud puppy come up through the hole . . . we used to catch them on Lake Nipissing each winter . . . UG-LY.

As far of places to NOT swim in the park, I've seen enough on the lower Petawawa to make me rethink ever going for a dip in there =D

 

 

8/31/2016 2:04 pm  #12


Re: American Eel in the Park

Sadly American eels were extirpated from the park in the early half of the last century. The last confirmed eel in the boundaries of algonquin park was 1936. They are capable of by-passing dams going upstream (can breathe for short periods on land and leap over small dams) but are not smart enough to avoid them on the downstream return and are sucked into the turbines and chopped up in hydro dams.

 

8/31/2016 3:37 pm  #13


Re: American Eel in the Park

Craiger05 wrote:

How big were the ones you saw Sean?  Even if they were 'just' mudpuppies, never observed one in open water before.

Agreed there isn't much worse when ice fishing than thinking you have another tasty perch on the way to add to the pile and seeing a mud puppy come up through the hole . . . we used to catch them on Lake Nipissing each winter . . . UG-LY.

As far of places to NOT swim in the park, I've seen enough on the lower Petawawa to make me rethink ever going for a dip in there =D

 

30-40 cm long
 

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9/01/2016 7:09 am  #14


Re: American Eel in the Park

ugh, yeah those are big mud puppies!

 

3/20/2017 3:36 pm  #15


Re: American Eel in the Park

Are you sure they weren't pike?

 

3/21/2017 7:34 am  #16


Re: American Eel in the Park

AlgonquinGuy wrote:

Are you sure they weren't pike?

 100% sure. They undulated like an eel and had a head like an eel. I'm still going with mud puppy. Ironically, we caught one through the ice in January near Algonquin Park.

     Thread Starter
 

3/21/2017 3:52 pm  #17


Re: American Eel in the Park

It would be highly doubtful that that were Mudpuppies, but it could be a possibility and Park Naturalists would definitely be interested in the sighting and details about it, (and any photos).  There are two Raven articles on Mudpuppies in the Park.

http://www.algonquinpark.on.ca/pdf/raven_2014_2.pdf
http://www.algonquinpark.on.ca/pdf/raven_2015_4.pdf


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