PROSPECTS FOR THE 2004 FISHING SEASON Mahoning Valley lakes



* Water bodies marked with an asterick contain zebra mussels.
BERLIN LAKE*
Portage, Mahoning, and Stark counties -- 3,321 acres, unlimited horsepower.
Walleye -- Anglers note that there is a 15" length limit on walleye at this lake. Anglers should also be aware that Division of Wildlife fisheries personnel found zebra mussels* (one of the aquatic nuisance species) in this lake in 2001. The Division of Wildlife stocked 408,615 walleye fingerlings (1" to 2") in 2003 to supplement what has proven to be inconsistent natural year class production. On an unfortunate note, for those anglers who had enjoyed fishing the tailwater area (Mahoning River) below the Berlin Reservoir dam, this area has been closed to fishing. This area was closed due to the amount of trash and vandalism that has occurred over the years. There is now only a small section of the tailwater available for the angling public to use (without trespassing on private property). Sportsmen need to take the lead in stopping similar such closures. -- Outlook: Fair
Largemouth bass -- Outlook: Excellent
Smallmouth bass -- Outlook: Fair
White crappie -- Outlook: Excellent
Black crappie -- Outlook: Good
Bluegill -- Outlook: Poor
Muskellunge -- Anglers should concentrate their efforts in the Mill Creek area. Berlin Reservoir is the only inland impoundment where natural reproduction of muskellunge has been documented to any degree. Eleven muskellunge greater than 30" have been reported as captured in 2003 through Ohio Huskie Muskie Club applications (as of Nov. 30). Outlook: Fair
White bass -- Outlook: Excellent
Channel catfish -- Outlook: Excellent
An updated lake map is available at www.dnr.state.oh.us/wildlife/Fishing/lakemaps/lmaps.htm
BERLIN YOUTH FISHING POND
Portage County - 1 acre, no boats, YOUTH ONLY (15 years of age and younger) Largemouth bass -- Outlook: Good
Channel catfish -- Outlook: Excellent
GUILFORD LAKE
(Columbiana County) -- 328 acres, 10 horsepower.
Channel catfish -- Outlook: Excellent
Largemouth bass -- Outlook: Excellent
Bluegill -- Outlook: Good
Black and White crappie -- Outlook: Poor
Has wheelchair accessible shoreline fishing facilities.
HIGHLANDTOWN LAKE
(Columbiana County) -- 182 acres, electric motors only
Channel catfish -- Outlook: Excellent
Brown bullhead -- These smaller members of the catfish family are numerous, but only average 10" -- Outlook: Poor
Bluegill -- Outlook: Excellent
Largemouth bass -- There is a 12" to 15" protected (slot) length limit. Densities of small bass have increased. The removal of some of the many bass less than 12" should benefit both the size structure and condition of the bass population at this lake. -- Outlook: Good
Yellow perch -- Although not numerous, these fish will average 9" and range as high as 13" -- Outlook: Fair
Black crappie -- For people who know how to find them, black crappie are averaging better than 10". Outlook: Excellent
Has wheelchair accessible shoreline fishing facilities.
ISMOND POND
Columbiana County - 5 acres, electric motors only
Bluegill -- Outlook: Good
Channel catfish -- Channel catfish yearlings were stocked for the first time in 2003. A total of 150 fish, which averaged about 9" were released. These fish should reach 15" within a year or two -- Outlook: developing
LAKE MILTON
Mahoning County -- 1,641 acres, unlimited horsepower.
Largemouth bass -- Outlook: Fair
Smallmouth bass -- Outlook: Good
Bluegill -- Outlook: Good
Walleye -- A total of 169,409 1" to 2" walleye fingerlings were stocked in 2003 -- Outlook: Good
Muskellunge -- A total of 1,653 advanced fingerling muskellunge were stocked in 2003. Muskellunge had been stocked every year since 1997, except for 2002. . The numbers of muskellunge caught increased in 2003, with 128 fish recorded through Nov. 30, (based on Ohio Huskie Muskie Club applications). The numbers of fish captured in 2004 should continue to be impressive. Even though zebra mussels* have not yet been observed, it is likely to assume that they are present, since Berlin (which is infested with zebra mussels) directly flows into Milton Reservoir -- Outlook: Excellent
An updated lake map is available at www.dnr.state.oh.us/wildlife/Fishing/lakemaps/lmaps.htm
Has wheelchair accessible shoreline fishing facilities.
MOSQUITO LAKE*
Trumbull County - 6,550 acres, unlimited horsepower.
Walleye -- Very good numbers of 13" to 21" walleye are available. Most of the better walleye fishing occurs from mid -- April to early June. Many walleye are taken in shallow water, particularly on wave -- washed shores. -- Outlook: Excellent
Black crappie -- Outlook: Excellent
Bluegill -- Outlook: Excellent
Channel catfish -- Outlook: Good
Largemouth bass -- Outlook: Poor
Flathead catfish -- Outlook: Fair
White bass -- Outlook: Poor
PUNDERSON LAKE
(Geauga County) - 82 acres, electric motors only
Largemouth bass -- Outlook: Poor
Bluegill -- Outlook: Good
Rainbow trout -- Punderson Lake is one of the most popular lakes in northeast Ohio to catch trout. Catchable -- sized (10" -- 12" ) and surplus broodstock (generally 16" -- 28" ) trout are released during April and November, respectively. It has also ben documented that some trout are able to survive throughout the year at Punderson Lake, which is quite unusual in Ohio lakes. -- Outlook: Excellent
Channel catfish -- Outlook: Excellent
PYMATUNING LAKE
Ashtabula County -- 14,650 acres, 10 horsepower
Walleye -- Outlook: Good
Black and White crappie -- Outlook: Good
Bluegill -- Outlook: Excellent
Muskellunge -- A total of 121 muskellunge were reported captured (through Nov. 30, 2003), based on Ohio Huskie Muskie Club applications. The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission stocks 7,000 muskellunge fingerlings (6" ) annually. -- Outlook: Excellent
Smallmouth bass -- Outlook: Good
Largemouth bass -- Outlook: Fair
Yellow Perch -- Outlook: Good
Has wheelchair accessible shoreline fishing facilities.
WEST BRANCH LAKE*
Portage County - 2,350 acres, unlimited
Muskellunge -- Outlook: Excellent
Has wheelchair accessible shoreline fishing facilities.
ZEPERNICK LAKE
Columbiana County - 36 acres, electric motors only
Largemouth bass -- Outlook: Fair
Bluegill -- Outlook: Fair
Channel catfish -- Outlook: Excellent
Source: Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife; For more information contact Wildlife District Three, 912 Portage Lakes Drive, Akron, Ohio, 44319; (330) 644-2293.

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