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Story Archives: Bass returned to Turkey Creek
|Bass returned to Turkey Creek|
Between 750 and 1,000 pounds of bass fished from Turkey Creek during a Saturday tournament were returned to the creek that same day, thanks to action taken by the Franklin Parish Police Jury.
The Jury paid $500 for bass caught in Turkey Creek to be trucked from the weigh-in site in West Monroe back to the Franklin Parish waterway.
In a special meeting April 25, jurors Harvey Ray Guimbellot, Jackie Johnson, Ray Young, Ricky Campbell and Troy Herndon supported the measure, while juror Leroy Scott voted against it. Juror Buddy Parks was absent.
The Bass, Bucks and Ducks fishing tournament out of Monroe was held on any body of water fed by the Ouachita River, which included Turkey Creek.
Allen Butler, a local fishing tournament director and certified tournament weigh master, said this tournament was a large one, and about 150 angling teams out of 248 fished Turkey Creek during the event.
"Eighty to 90 percent (of tournament competitors) was in Turkey Creek because the river is high and the fishing is horrible," Butler said. "That brought a whole lot of fishermen into Turkey Creek."
Butler said Sam Haring of Haring Farms supplied the fish tank truck and employees at the weigh-in site at Lazarre Point in West Monroe to take the fish back to Turkey Creek and release them. The $500 covered the cost of fuel and manpower, and Butler said Haring did not make a profit.
"I can tell you I wouldn't do it for $500," Butler said.
The catch-and-release tournament did not stipulate that the fish must be released into the same body of water they were taken from, but the police jury decided it was in the best interest of the Turkey Creek fish population to bring them back to Franklin Parish.
According to jury treasurer Larry Clark, only two fish were lost on the return ride to Franklin Parish. He added that those fishing the tournament supported how the jury brought the fish back to Turkey Creek.
"The people at the tournament were surprised, but in favor of us doing that. They thought it was a real good idea," Clark said.
A Turkey Creek fishing tournament will be held in June.
Juror Scott said wildlife officials told him the number of fish taken during the tournament would not be great enough to affect the population.
"I think we are really blowing this thing out of proportion," Scott said.
Butler agreed that the tournament probably would not significantly change the fish population, that the return and release was more of an effort to keep Turkey Creek well-stocked for the local fishing public.
"I've always said you can't hurt a fishery with a hook," Butler said.
In other matters, the jury agreed to issue a sewer waiver for a resident on Dobber Glass Road and to hire two Bush Hog operators.