Fishing Reports and News

Here's the latest reports and news that came to my desk.   If you have outdoor news, fishing or hunting reports and photos, please send to iloutdoors@comcast.net.

Mazonia Ice Fishing Report by Justin Radford
This has been a great weekend for ice fishing. My name is Justin Radford I live in Bolingbrook and I was fishing Saturday morning with some friends at Mazonia South Unit we all did good on the bass and northern the bluegill bite was another story we couldn't buy one but I did catch a very nice large mouth bass it was 24" and weighed 5pounds 4ounces on a golden roach using a spin rod. I was hoping it might make fish of the week for the papper. Here are some pictures of it . Thanks a lot and hope to see it in Wednesday's fishing report! Fish on!
Thank you, Justin Radford

Fort Meyers FL photo by Gary S.
For my 60th, my wife, Mary, took me saltwater fishing. Wes Skinner's charters, out of Ft Myers, showed me how. Red fish, stingrays, shark, and a couple of snooks. This is my big one. Not bad for a old freshwater guy.
Gary S.

IL DNR announces Wingshooting Schedule now available
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), in cooperation with a number of local sponsors, will be holding 31 wingshooting clinics at sites geographically distributed throughout Illinois from March through early November this year.  Most clinics are conducted on weekends.  Wingshooting clinics are held on IDNR sites, but are also held at cooperating gun clubs, hunting preserves, and farms.

Youth/Women’s wingshooting clinics are focused on participants learning to safely shoot a shotgun at a moving target with reasonable reliability.  Boys and girls typically in the 10-15 age group and women are eligible to participate.  Each clinic starts with a morning shotgun safety presentation, followed by a brief, hands-on shotgun orientation session with each group’s wingshooting instructor.  After a lunch break, participants spend the afternoon in the field shooting flying clay targets designed for beginning and novice shooters.  Not only do the participants learn to safely handle and shoot a shotgun, but they learn that being skilled at shooting clay targets is a lot of fun.  Most youth/women’s wingshooting clinics are provided at no cost to participants.  A few have a nominal - typically $10 - registration fee.  Shotguns, shotshells, clay targets and normally lunch are provided for participants.

Clinics are taught by instructors certified by the IDNR.  Many clinic instructors also have a National Sporting Clays Association (NSCA) instructor certification.  The participant-to-instructor ratio is usually four to one.  Participants are grouped with other shooters with similar shooting ability.

Follow these instructions to view the 2014 wingshooting schedule and register for a clinic:

Access the IDNR Website at http://www.dnr.illinois.gov
Access the "Parks/Recreation" drop down list from the toolbar on the IDNR Home Page

Then click on “State Parks”
Then scroll down to and click on "Wingshooting Clinics"

2014 Illinois Licenses Reminder
Outdoors enthusiasts are reminded that Illinois’ new license year begins April 1.  Illinois fishing, hunting and sportsman’s combination licenses for 2014 are available from DNR Direct license and permit vendors, online through the IDNR website www.dnr.illinois.gov/online/Pages/default.aspx, or by calling 1-888-6PERMIT (1-888-673-7648). The 2014 licenses will be valid through Mar. 31, 2015 unless otherwise noted. When buying a 2014 Illinois hunting, fishing, or sportsman’s license, add a donation to the Illinois Conservation Foundation to support youth hunting and fishing programs.  An additional $5.00 donation to the ICF will help recruit the next generation of outdoors enthusiasts.

Spring Turkey Applications
Random daily drawings for resident and non-resident hunters for 2014 Illinois Spring Wild Turkey permits begin March 10. The link to the online permit application can be found on the IDNR website Spring Turkey page:  http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/hunting/turkey/Pages/SpringTurkeyHunting.aspx

2014 Spring Youth Wild Turkey Hunt
Over-the-counter sales of county permits for the Spring Youth Wild Turkey Season begin on March 4. The dates for the 2014 Spring Youth Wild Turkey season are March 29-30 in the Southern Zone and April 5-6 in the Northern Zone.  For permit application and other information, check the IDNR website at this link:  www.dnr.illinois.gov/hunting/turkey/Pages/SpringTurkeyHunting

Spring Trout Season Opens April 5
The 2014 Spring Trout Fishing Season in Illinois will begin at 5 a.m. on Sat., April 5. The catchable trout program is made possible through the sale of inland trout stamps to those anglers who participate.  Unless exempt, anglers must have a valid Illinois fishing license and an inland trout stamp. A list of sites for the spring catchable trout program is available on the IDNR website at this link:  http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/news/Pages/IllinoisSpringTroutFishingSeasonOpensApril5.aspx

Please note that an earlier announcement incorrectly included Gebhard Woods State Park as a spring trout location; Gebhard Woods is not open to spring trout fishing.

Niagara, NY Fishing Forecast for Thursday, March 6, 2014 by BiIll HIlts
1.       Lake Ontario and tributaries – With slightly warmer temperatures this weekend in the forecast, look for some of the streams to open up and give anglers some water to cast to. The go-to location for stream fishermen locally is the Burt Dam area of 18 Mile Creek and there was open water there according to Wes Walker at The Slippery Sinker in Olcott. Jigs fished under a float and tipped with a wax worm are catching a few fish but egg sacs are starting to turn on. Walker reported that some anglers have been catching steelhead that are dropping eggs. All in the Same Boat Tackle Shop was reporting the use of white and pink colored jigs, as well as a special single cured salmon egg that was working well. Ice fishing in Wilson was producing some trout and pike in the main channel; panfish and perch in the back bay. March 15 is the end date for several fishing seasons in the Empire State including walleye, Northern pike, pickerel and statewide tiger musky. All will reopen the first Saturday in May. Tiger musky in the Great Lakes closed when the regular muskellunge seasons closed and those will reopen when the regular musky season opens the third Saturday in June. The inland tiger musky season opens the first Saturday in May. Mark your calendars for a bullhead contest being sponsored by the Wilson Conservation Club April 11-13. Registration points are All in the Same Boat, Newfane and CMC Auto Repair, Wilson. It will be a 100 percent payback.

2.       Lower Niagara River – Action in the lower river has been decent considering the weather. Cold temperatures and ice floes are hampering fish-catching action, but boaters are still doing well all things considered. A mix of steelhead, brown trout and lake trout are all being reported on Kwikfish, egg sacs or minnows. Double digit days are not uncommon, depending on weather or not the fish stay on your line all the way to the boat. The Niagara River Anglers Association will be hosting its annual John Long, Sr. Memorial Raffle and Feast at St. Vincent de Paul Hall located on Military Road, Niagara Falls on March 23 starting at 2 pm. Check out the website www.niagarariveranglers.com for details. This is the main fund raiser for youth programs in the club.

3.       Upper Niagara River – Not too much to report other than some ice fishing action around Grand Island at the Holiday Inn and Beaver Island State Park Marina. At Buffalo Boat Harbor, nothing changed there with a mix of perch and panfish, most of which are smaller in size. Some nicer perch catches have been reported in the channels and bays off the harbor around the Bell Slip Harbor and Freezer Queen to name a few locations.

Bill Hilts, Jr.
www.Niagara-USA.com

Lake of the Woods Minnesota report and video by Joe Henry
Walleye season open until April 14. Pike open all year. Permanent fish houses out through March 31. Fishing still consistent in multiple locations this week. Fishing good in the mud 26-28 or 30-32 feet of water, showing lots of eater walleyes and saugers. Jigging with frozen shiner head and dead stick with live minnow best. Electronics helpful. Use bright colors, plain hooks, or buck shots. Up north by Knight and Bridges Islands, reefs still producing in 29-31 feet. Glitter gold, gold/pink, or pink/white the hot colors. Lots of big saugers in the mix with jumbo perch. With a timid bite, anglers are finding their own techniques to get the bite. Active pike in shallows 8-12 feet using tip-ups set 1/2 the depth.
On the Rainy River and Four Mile Bay, walleye are officially in pre-spawn mode. Spring regs apply. Morning and evening runs the best near the mouth of the river, the airport, or East by Clementson Bay. Find deep pockets and jig near adjacent rivers.

Up at the NW Angle, limits filled quickly with numbers of eater walleyes and saugers. 24-28' best depth using gold, pink, chartreuse, or orange. Pike and perch active in adjacent spots. Good crappie bite in Ontario waters.

 

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