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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Greetings fellow fishermen. I hate for this to be my first post but I've been following the condition of LA through you guys and this is where I thought I might look for help.
Just a brief introduction. I live close to LA and recently bought a 20 yr old Stratos to hopefully spend some quality time with my stepdad fishing LA since we'd been kind of taking for granted living so close to it. I spent about 2 months straight restoring this boat. I put in new carpet, seats, mechanical, and wet sanded and polished like a day laborer to get the oxidation off.
(all from a wheelchair at that)
So, you could imagine my disappointment after all this work and expense to learn that the lake just down the road from me was turning into a stinky septic pond because of the carp.
I've been lurking here since then, reading and following certain members efforts and such, which I am truly grateful for. Especially John and the others who are obviously dedicated to trying to make a difference.

Recently there has been concern with the water quality in the Lake Austin Estates neighborhood and people were complaining about the smells, the chlorine amounts etc.. After following things here and seeing the news reports as well as the back and forth with the CoA and TP&W, I thought I would try and make my contribution by alerting the neighbors of the carp and loss of habitat situation. I'm no biologist, but it doesn't take one to understand that that lack of plant life to filter the water and imbalance of carp is definitely making an impact, especially after reading all of your stories here and being on the water myself.

I may have bitten off more than I can chew when I posted this to the neighborhood news group, but the frustration with the situation had taken over and I pulled the trigger. Here is what I wrote:
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Concerned about the water quality? GET RID OF THE CARP! 13h ago

You can thank Eric Moreland Meet Our Members | Elite 25 Austin...
and FOLA (Friends of Lake Austin) for kneejerk reacting and dumping thousands and thousands of carp in Lake Austin because they didn't want the icky hydrilla touching their precious babies' feet when they're wakeboarding. (wakeboarding is also eroding and tearing up the lake with no vegetation to stop it) The carp have eaten ALL (and I mean ALL) of the plant life and completely destroyed the ecosystem balance of the lake. Even the new plant life they're trying to re-plant hasn't been successful. Now that there's no plant life to FILTER the water and GIANT carp are pooping in it, it smells and tastes well...like...POOP....You can believe the "algae bloom" story if it makes you feel better, but It wouldn't be able to bloom so wildly if it didn't have so much POOP/fertilizer in the water... I think it's a cover story personally.
I've spoken to a couple of long time Lake Austin fishermen and they've said that this species of carp is adapting to the "no food left" situation by eating OTHER fish (when they were supposed to be vegetarian) I can't confirm this, but it makes sense. Not to mention that the baby fish have no place to hide and grow since the carp ate ALL of their habitat. People clear the forest and wonder where all the animals went....o_0 SMH
So, what once used to be the 3rd best fishing lake in Texas and top 10 in the nation is now turned into a rotten pond. Nothing short of mass collective pressure put on FOLA, CoA, and TP&W to remove at least 15,000 of the roughly 20+k that were put in will give the lake at least a remote chance of recovering, otherwise it could be 10+ years if that.
As a boater and fisherman and all round fan of the lake, it's literally depressing to see all the garbage and septic stench on the upper end of the lake and elsewhere. Apparently, in our "instant gratification" society, a tiny handful of waterfront real estate agents and other movers and shakers couldn't be bothered with doing environmental studies or looking at how other lakes in Texas have been destroyed by massive carp introduction, they wanted the icky plant stuff GONE yesterday. Well they got their wish.
Once again, it will take massive collective effort and pressure to get open season declared on the carp that have destroyed our lake/water supply. Remove most if not ALL of the carp, let the plant life and health of the lake rebound, and then SLOWLY add carp if necessary. And don't let a small group of elites that have favor with the govt. screw it up for the rest of us again.
LESS POOP=LESS CHLORINE.....MORE PLANTS=HEALTHY LAKE
Roughly 12-20 people with influence are responsible for this happening. If we had 2000 people taking some sort of collective action maybe we could save our lake, otherwise it's only going to get worse.
/rant
PS, If there is enough concern about the issue above and people are willing to organize in mass, I will be happy to put the pitchforks and torches in touch with a local fisherman who has been spearheading communication with all of the parties involved and maybe the right pressure can be put in the right places to make something happen. Otherwise it will not only get worse, but the carp are infiltrating Ladybird Lake and it's only a matter of time from there.
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And here is one of the responses I've gotten from a person who begins their credentials with being part of the "******* Fishing Tournament" but then discounts my info from "bubba from the fishing hole." I'd really like to educate this person without coming unglued and humbly seek your counsel as you guys obviously care about and are more closely involved with the situation than the average "bubba." Any input as to how to respond to this would be greatly appreciated. And thank you for this forum as well. I have learned a good deal since I found it. Feel free to dive into this conversation if you wish. I thought it would be a good idea to alert 1500 or so neighbors as to what was going on with their water supply (right or wrong)
https://austinlakehills.nextdoor.com/news_feed/?post=21291581

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Cindi Summers from Austin Lake Hills 6h ago

Ummmm, what????

You might want to research the carp issue a little further. There are many species of carp and these are not the invasive kind you see up north in the rivers. I have been an avid fishing person for over 40 years and am happy to show you the difference. I also am from the area of Bath, Illinois - home of the ******* Fishing Tournament - you will be quite entertained if you look that up.
Carp are not destroying the water quality. The carp that were released were sterilized. There is not a shortness of food- we were in a several year drought, I am sure you remember the lakes being about 1/4 full? Some stuff got pretty concentrated.

Fish naturally secrete hormones that determine how big and how many fish can survive a body of water. Research this stuff before blowing the panic horn. Don't take my word for it- research it. And that means REAL research, not bubba at the fishin' hole.

You might try looking up what happened to Red Bud Trail Park when everyone kept leaving their dog feces and not picking it up..... they closed the park because the run off was highly concentrated with bacteria. It was pretty bad for Lady Bird Lake.

Our water comes from surface water.... so you might want to make sure of the crap you are putting in your yards.... the fertilizers, pesticides, bad septic systems out here, bubba's oil change, and all those dog feces that nobody wants to pick up and take with them....

I guess we all have opinions.... mine is that chlorine is pretty poison and there are plenty of bacteria that don't respond to chlorine. Follow the money. Spend the money on better ways and don't become Flint....

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I'm open to any constructive criticism of my article or corrections of any kind as I defer to your expertise in these matters. I felt like I had a grasp on the situation, but please let me know where I'm wrong if I am. I'd like to be able to educate the community without alienating them, but persuasive writing was never one of my strong suits.....;)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yeah, I saw that. I thought by educating her, I might help educate the rest, but it might be a lost cause.
Hey, on a side note, I recognize your photo from the Texas Hawgs website. I recently got to go fishing with Brian as I am a newbie to all of this and he is a good guy. He took me out on his boat on Decker and we had a great time. Did you catch that fish with Brian?
 

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Man, what a condescending biatch, that Cindi. WTF? She should be pissed like the rest of us since she's an "avid fishing person." You can't educate her.

Related: http://www.austinbassfishing.com/fo...vels-coliform-bacteria-water-lake-austin.html

I'd be interested to hear from folks in other water districts that source water from LA, not to mention the entire City of Austin. Has anyone else received any notifications about water quality from your supplier?
 

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I did. The fish in my sig was a 10lbr that I caught in a club tourney on Choke Canyon from the backseat of Bryan's boat.

Cindi is right about following the money, but she doesn't seem to know what that means. What that rich ***** doesn't realize is that most of the "bubbas at the fishin hole" are alot smarter than her. I'm pretty sure the same amount of dogs were shitting in LA's backyards back in 2012. She's kinda all over the place with her arguments. She would be pretty easy to argue down, but it would take a wall of text that I don't have time & energy for at the moment. You were right on with what you posted, and it's a good thing to advocate for the lake. If Cindi was a real "avid fishing person", she would be on board with what the real problem is.
 

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Allright you got me thinking about it so I started off a reply for you... Feel free to add/subtract as you see fit, and let us know what kind of response you get.


Cindy,
I have done my research, and I know exactly what I'm talking about. You're right, the silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix) is not the same species as the Grass Carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella) aka White Amur. So no, I don't need you to explain the difference.

When you say that the grass carp are not destroying the water quality, have YOU done your research to support that statement? Just because the carp are sterilized does not mean that overstocking them has not caused a big problem. If you were to do your research, you would see that there is a massive shortage of food for that many grass carp. There is virtually no vegetation in the lake, so the grass carp are doing whatever they can to survive. The vegetation in the lake is a natural filter that has been eradicated by a few people with real estate interests in lakefront property.

I'm not sure what you mean when you say "stuff got pretty concentrated". Lake Austin is a constant level lake that has not been drawn down in many years, so while the low levels of Travis did somewhat affect the temperatures of the lake, low lake levels are not the cause of the vegetation removal on Lake Austin.

Your point about fish releasing hormones to naturally control population may be correct in a natural setting, however when a single species is grossly overstocked to the point that it causes the natural ecosystem to fall out of balance, those hormones do not come into play. The fish just do what they can to survive, including eating whatever they can to stay alive.

The point you made about Red Bud is only partially applicable to the Lake Austin situation. There are just as many dogs in LA's backyards now as there were when the water was pristine back in 2011-2012. The problem now may be partially due to surface runoff, and that problem is magnified by the lack of filtering vegetation.

You're right about following the money, and it doesn't seem like you're doing that. The money that FOLA put into killing off Lake Austin's vegetation was an investment in real estate interests, NOT in the interest of the health of the ecosystem, or the quality of your drinking water.

As you are an "avid fishing person", I'm interested to hear how your firsthand experience has been on Lake Austin. Have you noticed any changes in the health and quantity of the fish you're catching out there? If you truly care about the lake where your drinking water comes from, and you would prefer to not drink high levels of chlorine and/or coliform bacteria, I encourage you to do your own research about the proper levels of triploid carp stocking for hydrilla control, and see for yourself how TPWD, FOLA, and COA grossly mismanaged the situation.

I'm also interested in how you think we should spend money in "better ways" to avoid a situation like Flint. Is there a better way to get clean water than for it to be naturally clean?
 

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"The money that FOLA put into killing off Lake Austin's vegetation was an investment in real estate interests"

That's exactly right, and it's also exactly why no one living on that lake, the only people with the power to really do anything about what happened, will ever do anything about it.

Lake Travis is fishing really great! And there's no major vegetation that can be killed either. They'd have to start removing boulders to kill the bass in Travis lol.
 

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Get 'em Kyle!

What I am most disappointed in is that TPWD allowed this to happen. They are supposed to act on behalf of the wildlife with science and facts despite what any other person, group or local governing body wants. I, as someone who cares about our states nature and wildlife, counts on them to do so. They did not and as of right now I no longer have faith in them. I hope that one day that feeling changes.

I know they watch over so much more than Lake Austin, but this debacle makes me question their decision makers.
Game Wardens-Thank you for your service!
 

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I dont think they'd be able to do that without a huge lawsuit. Fola paid good money for those fish, they're not going to just step aside if tpwd decided to open season on their fish.
 

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The key word is paid good money.... It has always been about the money. TPWD did not do **** to protect the lake. They certainly did not stand up for the well being of that lake. Furthermore, as Kyle has already stated no one knew what they were getting into. They were poorly educated on what was going to take place.

God I hope they allow us to kill these carp and realize the mistake. I use to love to bow fish, and I will gladly kill as many of those as possible.
 

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This is how I see it happening....;)

If they lift that ban I bet I could kill 50-100 in the first day. Wonder Bread plus treble hook FTW.

I wonder where we can launch this bad boy...A few hundred pounds of french fries and a 2 day rental should do the trick. :sport66::sport66::sport66:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jGmKO4CQ56c

I'd personally like to go out with a few bags of chips and my Russian semi auto Saiga 12 gauge and a 20 round drum mag with steel sabot slugs, criscross bandoleer, smoking a big cigar and wearing a giant sombrero, but that would probably make the folks at country line a little nervous...
 

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I did. The fish in my sig was a 10lbr that I caught in a club tourney on Choke Canyon from the backseat of Bryan's boat.

Cindi is right about following the money, but she doesn't seem to know what that means. What that rich ***** doesn't realize is that most of the "bubbas at the fishin hole" are alot smarter than her. I'm pretty sure the same amount of dogs were shitting in LA's backyards back in 2012. She's kinda all over the place with her arguments. She would be pretty easy to argue down, but it would take a wall of text that I don't have time & energy for at the moment. You were right on with what you posted, and it's a good thing to advocate for the lake. If Cindi was a real "avid fishing person", she would be on board with what the real problem is.
When I first saw that pic I thought it could have been photoshopped until I started looking through Brian's photo gallery. Wow, that is a beautiful fish! I caught an axe grinding, bone crushing, Earth shattering PB off the back of Brian's boat coming in at a whopping 3.5 lbs (you can see it in my profile pic)...I'd love to reel in something like you did. Maybe someday. I'm due for some surgeries on my leg so I'm going to have to cover my boat pretty soon, but I'm going to try and get in a North Lake Travis trip in before I'm bedridden for a couple of months. Someone we know just caught a 17lb striper trolling up in the narrows the other day.
Thanks for taking the time to craft a response to "Cindi". I'm getting the feeling that when she meant "fishing," she was fishing in the cooler for ham sammich fixins to serve to the people actually fishing. I was having 2nd thoughts about getting involved any further but I've never been known to run from a fight, and your support makes a difference. Besides, I've picked tougher things out of my teeth than "cindi" after a bad steak...I will gladly use your words and attribute them to you.
(is "concerned Bubba" for a pseudonym ok?) because I agree wholeheartedly and think you hit the nail on the head.
I'm just wondering if publicly shaming some of these individuals who were part of the carp insertion is the best way to go. I tried to write a couple of them privately and appeal to common sense and explained how being an "honorable man" meant admitting when they were wrong and fixing the mistake, but I got no response. I'm willing to do whatever it takes to help. I just don't want to hurt the cause in the process. It just felt right to point out the carp and lake situation when people were grumbling about the water quality and smell.
Thanks again.
 

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"Bubba at the fishin hole"

Geez. More like a large group of people that spend countless hours a week scouring every inch of a lake with $k's worth of grass finding electronics. Most of us are better funded and have more time and passion for this purpose than a TPWD study.

Anyways, they dont care about fish or fishing, so not much point in arguing that. I think the only argument that will be listened to is how the causation of the lack of vegetation has led to the lack of water quality. I remember reading about how John took TPWD and a news group for a ride to show them the complete lack of bottom vegetation. Offer to show more skeptics that and combine it with water studies (that I am sure anyone that draws potable water from the lake has a record of). With the decimation of vegetation, the water quality will only be getting worse - poor water quality test results will be easy to find.
 
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