COLUMBUS -- The weekly fishing report provided by the Division of Wildlife of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.
Portage Lakes (Summit County) -- Crappie are being taken in 8 to 10 feet of water from Nimisila and Long lakes. A pinmin tipped with live bait is good. Anglers should focus on the weed edges in the back bays and coves.
East Reservoir -- At the south end of Miller Lake in East Reservoir, panfishing is picking up in the mornings and late evenings. Bluegill, pumpkinseeds, warmouths, and redear sunfish are biting on maggots, wax worms, and night crawlers.
Cuyahoga River (Cuyahoga County) -- This river is a great location to catch smallmouth and northern pike. However, due to recent rains, the river is very muddy and has slowed fishing.
Spencer Lake (Medina County) -- Anglers are encouraged to fish structure near the shoreline for channel catfish in late evenings. Despite the heat fish are biting throughout early afternoon as well. Chicken livers, scented bait, shrimp, or night crawlers are recommended baits.
Buckeye Lake (Fairfield, Licking, and Perry counties) -- For channel catfish use prepared baits and soft craws fished along the bottom lake wide, especially in boat channels. Anglers fishing at night may also catch flathead catfish when using small sunfish and large chubs as bait. Use doughballs in shallow water near the shoreline when seeking carp. Look for hybrid striped bass chasing baitfish along the surface. The Cranberry Marsh and Clouse Cove areas are good locations to fish for largemouth bass using top water baits, small spinners, soft plastic baits and live bait.
Indian Lake (Logan County) -- Areas with slow moving current are good places to fish at night for channel catfish. Fish close to shore using cut bait, chicken livers or prepared baits. Look for areas with deeper brush piles to catch bluegill on red worms, mealworms, and larval bait at depths of three to eight feet. The riprap areas are best for largemouth bass. Irregularities like corners or underwater projections are good areas to target. Keeper bass must measure at least 12 inches. This is a top spot to fish for saugeye.
Pleasant Hill (Richland County) -- Excellent catches of catfish are being reported from Pleasant Hill. Cut shad fished at night is working well. The best spot is around the marina area.
Charles Mill (Richland County) -- For catfish, chicken livers and frozen shrimp are hot. The best time is after dark and the best spot is around the state Route 430 bridge.
Blanchard River (Putnam County) -- Good numbers of catfish are being caught. Still fishing night crawlers on the bottom at night will yield the best results. The best spot seems to be on the Putnam/Hancock County border.
Blanchard River (Hardin County) -- Good numbers of smallmouth bass are being taken in the evening. Light colored Rapalas are working well. The best spot seems to be around the County Road 20 bridge.
Ferguson Reservoir (Allen County) -- Channel cats are being taken on night crawlers fished on the bottom. The east side of the reservoir is the best. Smallmouth bass in the 14-to 16-inch range are being taken on the surface using buzz baits. The west side of the reservoir is the best location.
East Fork Lake (Clermont County) -- Hybrid striped bass are being caught by anglers trolling or jigging shad colored crank baits or spoons in 5 to 7 foot depths. Try slowly trolling with live gizzard shad. Shore anglers have been successful using night crawlers and chicken livers around the main state park public swimming beach. Anglers are catching fair numbers of sublegal fish with some fish caught up to 19 to 22 inches in length. Channel catfish are being caught by anglers using crawdads, live minnows, or earthworms as bait. Cast into the areas under undercut banks or near submerged trees and brush. Keep the bait off of the bottom and about five to eight feet deep. Use a No. 1-3 sized baitholding hook.
Caesar Creek Lake (Clinton, Greene, and Warren counties) -- Saugeye anglers are catching a few 15 to 18 inch fish from 6 to 15 feet depths, but most fish are small. Troll medium or deep diving crank baits along submerged points or underwater humps. Cast or drift with live night crawlers on a bottom bouncing harness rig, or use a lead head jig tipped with a piece of worm. Fish in the early morning and early evening hours. Bluegill and other sunfish are being caught by anglers using curly tails, jigs with plastic bodies, live minnows, earthworms, or wax worms as bait. When using an artificial lure, good color choices are white or chartreuse. Fish along the shoreline and keep the bait under a bobber between two to 10 feet deep. Cast into areas with wood debris and submerged trees or brush. Also look for good fishing opportunities in areas with rocky bottoms. Use a No. 8 fine-wire hook for live baits. Channel catfish are being caught by shore anglers using night crawlers, shrimp, and chicken livers. Fish the bait tight line along the bottom in 5 to 8 foot depths.
Forked Run Lake (Meigs County) -- Channel catfish are being caught during the nighttime hours. The best locations have been in the upper end of the lake. Anglers have been using night crawlers and chicken liver fished on the bottom. Water levels are low and clear.
Muskingum River (Morgan County) -- Excellent catches of flathead catfish have been reported below the McConnelsville Lock and Dam. Fish have been running in the 20-to 48-pound range. Anglers are using live bait such as gizzard shad to catch these large fish.
Ohio Power ReCreation Area (Morgan County) -- Some largemouth bass up to three pounds have been caught. Anglers are using plastic worms rigged Texas style. Darker colors have been working best. Some bluegill have been caught using small bits of night crawler fished below a bobber.
Salt Fork Lake (Guernsey County) -- Water levels are still below normal at this lake. Bass and sunfish angling has been slow but Muskellunge fishing has been above average since the drawdown. The beach area has been the best spot for flathead catfish. Live bait is being used by successful anglers. If you boat on Salt Fork Lake, beware of stumps and other hazards due to the low water levels.
Western Basin
Walleye fishing has been slow. Expect fishing to improve as the large 2003 year class begins to surpass the 15" minimum size limit. The best walleye fishing has been around "A" can of the Camp Perry firing range and around West Sister Island. Drifting or trolling worm harnesses and trolling spoons produce the most fish. Yellow Perch fishing improved over the past weekend with limits being caught. The best areas have been northwest of Kelleys Island, between Ballast Island and Middle Bass Island, S of "B" can of the Camp Perry firing range, from the gravel pit to the turnaround buoy of the Toledo shipping channel, and from Lakeside to Kelleys Island. A perch spreader tipped with shiners is the most popular setup. The best smallmouth bass fishing has been around the Bass Islands, Kelleys Island and Sandusky Bay. Largemouth bass have been caught in Sandusky Bay, East Harbor and West Harbor.
Central Basin
Walleye fishing was excellent over the past weekend. The best areas were 7 to 21 miles north of Fairport Harbor to Geneva in 70 to 75 of water, and 10 to 18 miles north of Ashtabula in 70 to 72 of water. Trolling 30 to 50 feet down with spoons, crawler harnesses or stick baits, using planer boards, dipsy divers, downriggers or jet divers, have produced the best catches. The best spoon colors have been confusion, watermelon and black/silver. Fish have ranged from 15 to 28 inches. Yellow perch fishing has been excellent 3 miles north of Edgewater state park in 45 of water, 3 to 5 miles north of Ashtabula in 45 to 60 of water, and 3 to 4 miles off of Fairport Harbor in 45 to 55 of water. A perch spreader tipped with shiners is the most popular set up. Fish have ranged from 7-11 inches. The best smallmouth bass fishing has been around breakwalls and rocky drop-offs from Lorain to Avon point. Tube jigs and drop-shot rigs with goby imitations have been the most productive lures. Steelhead have been caught by walleye anglers in the same areas mentioned in the walleye report. Fish have ranged from 16 to 28 inches. Lake Erie surface temperatures are in the upper 70s.

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