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Saturday, May 18, 2013 12:33 AM

OHIO DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES

DIVISION OF WILDLIFE

Weekly Fish Ohio Fishing Report!

CENTRAL OHIO

Indian Lake (Logan County) - Saugeye are being caught on wind-swept points and channel openings with current at this 5,040-acre lake; try casting or trolling small rattletraps and suspending crankbaits. Largemouth bass fishing is popular along the many stone riprap areas, docks and islands; fishing the lily pads can be rewarding this time of year. Many bass are in the 12- to 18-inch range and are in shallow water. Crappie and white bass fishing can both be good during May; minnows are the most popular choice for live bait. Channel catfish fishing should be picking up as the water warms.

Oakthorpe Lake - This 41-acre lake in Fairfield County provides good largemouth bass fishing; try plastics and spinner baits around shoreline cover and the lily pads on the north side of this overlooked lake. Crappie are being taken from the deep water on the west bank with a minnow suspended by a bobber; look for submerged timber. Bluegill can be caught around lily pads; use small worms, crickets, or insect larvae. Electric motors only.

NORTHWEST OHIO

Sandusky River (Sandusky County) - Water temperature is 63 °F, the water level is normal and clarity is average to good. Although anglers may still find some walleye in the river, walleye fishing has been slow and the run is over — do NOT keep any walleye shorter than 15 inches (please take a ruler with you) and the bag limit is now 6. The white bass run is near the peak and fishing is excellent, with large numbers being caught. All areas of the river are producing good numbers of large fish; anglers should try using jigs, spinners or worms under a bobber. Black bass cannot be possessed until June 28.

Maumee River — Water temperature is 63 °F, the level is normal and clarity is average. Bluegrass Island is accessible at this time. Anglers are still catching a few limits of walleye at this time but the run is winding down — do NOT keep any shorter than 15 inches (please take a ruler with you) and the bag limit is now 6 fish. The white bass fishing is still picking up and good numbers of are being caught; anglers are using jigs, spinners or worms under a bobber and all areas are producing. Black bass cannot be possessed until June 28; any caught must be released immediately unharmed.

Lima Lake (Allen County) - Located on SR 82, east of I-75, this 88-acre lake has been producing good catches of crappie, bluegill and trout. Anglers are having luck throughout the lake; however, try near the dock at the boat ramp using jigs, spinners, or slip bobbers with minnows, wax worms, nightcrawlers or flavored baits. There is a boat ramp available or anglers can fish along the shoreline. Boats are restricted to electric motors only.

Oxbow Lake (Defiance County) - Located at Oxbow Wildlife Area, 7 miles northwest of the city of Defiance on Trinity Road, anglers have been catching some crappie; try fishing near the water control structure using artificial jigs. Boats are allowed and there is a ramp available; however, boats are restricted to electric motors only.

NORTHEAST OHIO

Dale Walborn Reservoir (Portage County) - Crappie have been biting very well in water less than 5 feet deep; boat and shore anglers are catching large numbers of fish on minnows, wax worms and jigs under slip bobbers. The channel catfish have also been active, taking nightcrawlers fished on slip-sinker rigs.

Berlin Lake (Mahoning/Portage/Stark counties) - The crappie bite continues at this large, popular lake; anglers are catching crappie in 5-7 feet of water, in bays and the main lake. Fish seem to be schooling farther from cover than usual at times, so be prepared to try different locations to find them; jig and minnow combinations or tube jigs under slip bobbers are the ticket. Walleye are biting at times as well, with jig and minnows and fat-bodied crankbaits producing well; many walleye anglers are catching bonus catfish, with nightcrawlers being especially effective. White bass are running up the creeks, giving shore anglers an excellent shot at some fast action; try small crankbaits and other minnow-imitating baits.

SOUTHEAST OHIO

Lake Logan (Hocking County) - Saugeye angling should be in full swing this week; try bottom-bouncing jigs tipped with nightcrawlers fished at 6- to 10-foot depths or trolling crankbaits in 6-10 feet of water. Crappie anglers should begin to look for white crappies moving into shallower water around shoreline structure to spawn; these can be caught using small plastic-bodied jigs or live minnows fished below bobbers in depths less than 6 feet.

Wolf Run Lake (Noble County) - Rainbow trout are on the move to find cooler water; bright-colored Powerbait trout nuggets fished near the dam have been reported to be successful. Largemouth bass are also a popular species to target in the spring; try jerkbaits, crankbaits or minnows near structure in 3-10 feet of water. Crappie anglers should try minnows or roadrunners tipped with a twister-tail in 10-15 feet of water near rocks or other structure. A boat ramp is located at the east end of the lake off the SR 215 entrance and boats with motors up to 10 HP are permitted. Please note the new regulations for 2013: a daily bag limit of three largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass, with two less than 14 inches and 1 greater than or equal to 20 inches.

SOUTHWEST OHIO

Cowan Lake (Clinton County) - Crappie, between 9-14 inches, are being caught around brush piles with slip bobber and minnows 12-18 inches deep, especially within 20 feet off the bank.

Acton Lake (Preble County) - Crappie and saugeye are being caught; fish fallen timber on both shore lines. Try minnows or chartreuse and white for saugeye; the crappie are being taken on minnows under a float at about 12-20 inches deep.

OHIO RIVER

Riverbend to downtown area (Hamilton County) - Water levels are slightly high but anglers report channel cats off gravel humps in about 20 feet of water near channel drop-offs; fish depths from 15-30 feet and try cut skipjack and shad.

Pike Island Dam (Belmont County) - Sauger fishing is popular this time of year; anglers have been fishing the pier by vertical-jigging with 1/4-oz. or smaller jigging spoons. Other methods for sauger fishing here include cast and a slow retrieve off the bottom of jigs with pearl or chartreuse twister tails tipped with a minnow. Catfish activity will be picking up in the evenings and early mornings; try nightcrawlers or chicken livers. Anglers fishing for catfish have also reeled in the occasional hybrid-striped bass. To target smallmouth bass, try casting spinner baits, crankbaits, tube baits or top-water “walk-the-dog”-style baits off of stony points.

LAKE ERIE

Regulations to Remember: The daily bag limit for walleye on Ohio waters of Lake Erie is 6 fish per angler; the minimum size limit is 15 inches. … The daily bag limit for yellow perch is 30 fish per angler on all Ohio waters of Lake Erie. … The trout and salmon daily bag limit is 5 fish per angler (as of last Wednesday) through Aug. 31; minimum size limit is 12 inches. … Black bass (largemouth and smallmouth bass) fishing is closed to possession (no harvest) through June 28.

Western Basin: Walleye fishing was fair over the past week (as of Wednesday). The best areas were from the turnaround buoy of the Toledo shipping channel to West Sister Island, from Rattlesnake to Green islands, E of South Bass Island and N of Kelleys Island. Trollers have been catching fish on crankbaits and worm harnesses; drifters are using worm harnesses with bottom-bouncers or are casting mayfly rigs. … Yellow perch have been caught N of Kelleys Island; perch-spreaders with shiners fished near the bottom produce the most fish.

Central Basin: Walleye have been caught nearshore off Cleveland after 6 p.m. and at night in 35-38’ of water using rapalas, husky jerks and reef runners. … Yellow perch fishing has been good — weather permitting — in 38’ of water N of Gordon Park in Cleveland, in 38’ of water N of the Fairport Harbor lighthouse and in 42-50’ of water NE of the Ashtabula; perch-spreaders with shiners fished near the bottom produce the most fish. Shore fishing has picked up off the East 55th Street pier in Cleveland; anglers are using spreaders with shiners and the mornings have been best. … Smallmouth bass fishing has been good in 15-25’ of water around harbor areas in Cleveland, Fairport Harbor, Geneva, Ashtabula and Conneaut. Largemouth bass are also being caught in the same areas; anglers are using drop-shot rigs with rubber worms, soft-craws, tube jigs and crankbaits.

The water temperature is 55 degrees off of Toledo and 52 degrees off of Cleveland, according to the nearshore marine forecast. Anglers are encouraged to always wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved personal flotation device while boating.

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Ohio Watercraft field locations extending hours

Ohio Watercraft field locations are extending their office hours to accommodate boaters who find limited time to get their paperwork in order.

The 11 Watercraft field offices are located across the state in Ashtabula, Cleveland, Sandusky, Maumee Bay, Wapakoneta, Akron, Cambridge, Delaware, Springfield, East Fork and Scioto County. They offer a variety of services that are not available at the independent registration agent locations, including verifying hull ID numbers and selling the popular Alternative Registration for hand-powered vessels.

For a listing of extended hours, visit the Watercraft Field Office page.

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ODNR awards funds for marine patrols

COLUMBUS — Twenty-four Ohio communities will receive a total of $574,711 from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) to support local marine patrol units. These assistance funds — provided by the Division of Watercraft — represent a continued effort to keep Ohio waterways safe and enhance recreational boating experiences.

The 2013 Marine Patrol Assistance Grants will help local law-enforcement agencies provide emergency response to boating-related incidents, conduct routine waterway patrols and purchase safety equipment for use on marine patrol vessels. The recipient agencies are located in counties throughout Ohio, which include large urban areas such as Cuyahoga, Franklin, Hamilton and Montgomery counties, as well as smaller communities such as Knox, Pickaway and Scioto counties.

In 2012, Ohio had a record 435,310 registered recreational watercraft, ranking ninth nationally. Among this total are a rapidly-growing number of registered canoes and kayaks that has more than doubled since 2001 and now represents one of every four watercraft registered in Ohio. As many as 3 million Ohioans enjoy recreational boating statewide each year on the Ohio River and Lake Erie, as well as on numerous inland lakes, rivers and other waterways. Additional boating information and a list of Marine Patrol Assistance Grant recipients is available online at watercraft.ohiodnr.gov/grants.

The Division of Watercraft administers Ohio’s boating and scenic rivers programs. The funding to support local marine patrol units comes from the state’s Waterways Safety Fund, which is comprised of the state motor fuel tax, watercraft registration and titling fees, as well as funds provided by the U.S. Coast Guard. The Division oversees watercraft registration and titling operations, provides funding to local communities for education, enforcement and boating access facilities, educates the public and enforces boating laws on Ohio’s waterways.

 

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