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Wildlife News Ohio Department of Natural Resources

The Fish Ohio Report

Tip of the Week - Along rivers and creeks, fish deep pools on sunny clear days or fish in the morning or early evening hours. On days that are overcast or cloudy, fish anywhere along the banks of the stream. For more information on fishing, check us out on the web at www.ohiodnr.com. Enjoy.

Greenfield Lake (Fairfield County) - There is no boat ramp on this 12-acre Fairfield County lake, but anglers may use electric motors on car-top boats. A fair population of bluegills provides opportunities to catch fish from the shoreline when using small worms and larval baits. Try fishing the sunken brush piles in the face of the dam. Use night crawlers and chicken livers fished along the bottom to take channel catfish. Channel catfish yearlings were stocked in fall 2002. This is a good lake to introduce beginners to recreational fishing.

O'Shaughnessy Reservoir (Delaware County) - This northwest area Columbus lake of 845 acres is an excellent largemouth bass fishery. Using crank baits, plastics, and live bait near brush, stumps, and fallen logs along both banks can be successful. Bluegills can be caught using small worms and insect larvae suspended under a bobber around shoreline cover throughout the lake. Crappies can be found in deeper water along the western bank; use minnows suspended by a bobber. Channel catfish can be taken in the upper section of the reservoir. Use cut baits, shrimp, or night crawlers fished on the bottom. Saugeye fingerlings (about 85,000) are stocked annually.

Pleasant Hill Lake (Richland County) - Excellent catches of saugeyes have been taken out of this lake. Floating jigs drifted across the flats are the best rig to use. Very good numbers of largemouth bass have also been taken using rubber worms. The best spots for these largemouth bass would be concentrating on shoreline structures.

Clearfork River (Richland County) - Fair to good catches of white bass have been taken in the river. White feather jigs fished 20 inches below a bobber and jigged back to shore are working well.

Shelby Reservoir #3 (Richland County) - Excellent catches of rainbow trout are being caught out of this reservoir. Wax worms fished 2 to 3 feet deep under a slip bobber is working well. Spinners are working great also.

Killdeer Reservoir (Wyandot County) - Good catches of walleye are coming out of this reservoir. Early morning seems to be the best time. Night crawlers and leeches trolled or under slip bobbers from the east or south shore is the best bet here.

Maumee River (Lucas and Wood counties) - Anglers are taking some white bass using minnows on spreaders and on jig heads with bright colored twister tails.

Sandusky River (Sandusky County) - Anglers are taking fair numbers of white bass on minnows fished under a bobber. Wading anglers are using smaller jigs. The best locations are between the State Street and the Hayes Street Bridges.

Killbuck Creek (Wayne County) -- Carp are rolling into the backwaters of Killbuck Creek, providing a good opportunity for bow fishing. Bow fishing for carp is low cost, low tech, and offers some highly successful fishing returns. Any type or pull weight of bow can be used to bow fish for carp. An inexpensive longbow in the 35 to 45-pound pull weight will do the job just fine. Fish can be approached by quietly wading from shore or by poling a boat; however, you may have equal success sitting quietly among a group of fish and waiting for movement. Once you've found a target, draw the string and let that arrow fly!

Pleasant Hill Lake (Richland and Ashland counties) -- While this 850-acre lake provides opportunities for catching many different species of fish such as crappies, bluegills, channel catfish, largemouth, smallmouth, or white bass, saugeyes are hitting especially well right now. Fish are averaging 14+ inches and some fish ranging up to 23 inches are present. The best areas are where the water is fairly shallow until the weather stays warmer, so try the sandy beach areas where the water depth is no deeper than 10 to 12 feet and the evenings hours seem to be the most productive. Try using minnows or running shallow running crank baits or jerk baits. (Unlimited horsepower motors permitted at this lake.) An updated map is available at our website www.ohiodnr.com.

Berlin Reservoir (Stark, Portage, and Mahoning counties) -- Crappies are hitting in the shallow waters by the flooded willows and downed timber. Average size crappies are running 8 to 10 inches in length and typically biting on minnows or tube jigs underneath a bobber. Anglers are also picking up walleyes while drifting live bait between the 224 causeway and the dam. Anglers are reminded that walleye must be 15 inches at Berlin Reservoir to be legally harvested. This lake is 3,321 acres in size and unlimited horsepower motors are permitted.

Cowan Lake (Clinton County) - Located nine miles southwest of Wilmington on SR 730. Crappies and white bass are being caught close to shore by using medium or small minnows on a #2 to 6 fine-wire hook. Bluegills are being caught using a wax worm on a small #6 or 8 fine wire hook. Saugeyes are being caught by anglers using minnows on a #2 sized hook and fished seven to eight feet deep along the rocky bottom. Fishing is good from a boat or canoe as you can drift with the currents.

Lake Loramie (Shelby County) - From I-75 north of Sidney, take S.R. 29 to S.R. 66 west. Channel catfish and bullhead catfish are being caught using cut baits, chicken livers, red worms, shrimp, or earth worms as bait. Use a #6 to #10 sized long-shank bait-holding hook. Keep the bait under a bobber or a slip bobber. Look for good fishing opportunities in the channels. Bluegills and crappies are being caught using jigs with plastic bodies, red worms, live minnows, earth worms, wax worms, or meal worms as bait. Choose artificial lures colored black, green, white, pink, orange, or chartreuse. Using a slip bobber, keep bait 2 to 4 feet deep. Choose a long-shank fine wire hook sized between #4 and #6. Cast from a boat or the shore. Good fishing opportunities are near submerged trees and brush.


Piedmont Lake (Belmont County) - Water temperature at this lake is running 61 to 63 degrees. Crappies are being caught in 5 to 8 feet of water when fishing off the brush piles and fish structures in the lake. Use minnows under a slip bobber; also use a small piece of split shot just above the minnow to get the bait deep, down close to the structure. Saugeyes are being caught on twister tails with a worm-tipped hook. Use a twister tail that is brown in color and jig off the bottom, casting and retrieving. Because the lake is clear, you can see a jig down to about 7 feet, so it is best to fish on overcast days during the morning and evening hours when the saugeyes move to the shallower water to feed.

Little Muskingum River (Monroe County) - Water conditions are clear, at normal pool, and water temperature is 66 degrees. Muskie fishing is excellent in this river right now with fish 20 to 30 inches in length being caught on shallow crank baits. This river is very scenic and offers an excellent opportunity for combining canoeing and fishing.

Buckeye Lake (Perry County) - Largemouth bass 12 to 14 inches in length, as well as a few catches up to 2½ pounds in size, are being caught on Jig-N-Pigs, black on black, and small jigs. The south side of the lake is providing great action for saugeyes when using small jigs tipped with minnows.

Lake Logan (Hocking County) - Located in the scenic Hocking Hills, this lake is providing excellent catches of saugeyes in the 12 to 20-inch range. Use jigs with twister tails or minnows fished on the bottom. Fish around the shoreline for largemouth bass using rapalas fished at 3 to 4 foot depths.

As of May 1 the walleye bag limit returned to 6 fish per angler and the treble hook restrictions in the bays expired. The 15-inch walleye minimum size limit remains in effect for the entire season. From May 1 to June 26, smallmouth bass possession is illegal. Anglers may catch and release smallmouth, but possession is not permitted.

Walleye -- The best walleye fishing has been north of Kelleys Island, around Clinton Reef west of Catawba, from D can of the Camp Perry firing range to Rattlesnake Island, around K can of the Camp Perry firing range, and north of Maumee Bay in 20 feet of water. Drifting or trolling worm harnesses near the bottom has produced the most fish. When fishing the reef complex be aware that ODNR sampling will be taking place throughout the spring. Nets are clearly marked with yellow flags and floats. Please stay clear of areas with nets.

Yellow Perch -- Yellow perch fishing has been good between the Marblehead ferry docks and the lighthouse, between Marblehead and the southeast corner of Kelleys Island, around Gull Island Shoal, off of the Vermilion River mouth, and within one mile of Lorain. Fish just off the bottom using perch spreaders tipped with shiners.

To view the predicted weather forecast for Lake Erie visit: http://seaboard.ndbc.noaa.gov/data/Forecasts/FZUS61.KCLE.html

Water conditions along the river vary from clearing to muddy and in some areas the water level is still 2½ to 3 feet above normal pool. Water temperature is 67 to 68 degrees.

Belmont County - Fish in the main stream for catfish using chicken liver fished on the bottom.

Monroe County - Fish the backwaters of Sunfish Creek and Possum Creek for largemouth bass using crank baits and plastic baits such as Jig-N-Pigs. Tight-line for channel catfish while using night crawlers for bait. At the mouth of Sunfish Creek, use minnows for catching crappies.

Meigs County - Fish for catfish at night in the backwater streams, such as Leading Creek and the Shade River. Use night crawlers to catch hybrid striped bass at the Belleville and Racine Dams.

Lawrence County - Hybrid striped bass up to 6 pounds in size can be caught on chicken liver and night crawlers. Sheepheads (freshwater drum) and suckers are also hitting night crawlers.
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