I just returned from a trip to Lake Geneva in Wisconsin. Many may think that this is a destination for boating, swimming on the beach, visiting the local restaurants, pubs and shops. Many anglers know it as a great destination for fishing as well, and it is. It was a great trip so let me start with my Geneva Lakes area report.
Geneva Lake and Lake Delavan fishing report
Fished this last week and into the weekend on these two lakes for the purpose of getting a TV show for the Lake Geneva CC/CVB. It was a cool weekend but with the help of a full moon, Roger Wright and I did well.
We started on Geneva Lake. Talking to local anglers coming off the water we learned that the rock bass were plentiful. All were fishing live bait and to me that explains the good catch. Roger and I were using artificial baits; tubes, Chigger Craws, Ocho worms rigged wacky worm style and Texas rigged. We caught many bass, over 20 in water that was 10 to 15 feet deep, Due to high winds we spent most of our time in Williams Bay. We got a few smallies too. Only one lonely rock bass made it to our boat.
On day two we fished Delavan. The day started out a bit windy but as time when on, the winds subsided. Most fish were caught on the north side of the lake near the midway point of this body of water. Within 15 - 20 yards of shore the depth dropped quickly. I think this was the key; deeper water near by. We fished outside the docks in 12 - 15 feet of water. We did toss plastics under some unoccupied docks too. It was a bright sky and I thought more fish would come from the shade of the docks but most came f rom deeper water.
Same deal as Geneva, we fished plastics but 4 inch Chigger Craws worked best.
We also went to the far northwest part of the lake and worked the 8 to 10 foot depth were there was sparatic weed growth. Using a half ounce, white skirted , double gold willowleag bladed spinnerbait was the top bait for the day. I say that because we probably caught 20 northern pike, none smaller than 24 inches. No monsters but it was constant action and loads of fun.
Perch open in July by Chris Young IL DNR
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is making changes to yellow perch regulations on Lake Michigan to reflect the wishes of perch anglers while continuing to protect the lake’s perch fishery. For the first time since 2001, perch fishing will be open during the month of July, the most popular month for perch angling. The number of fish allowed per angler remains at 15 per day. Starting in 2015, yellow perch fishing will close from May 1 to June 15 to further safeguard the spawning stock. Illinois perch anglers have indicated support for a spring closure to protect pre-spawn and spawning perch from harvest.
IDNR Director Marc Miller announced the new administrative rule is effective today.
“Perch anglers told us they want to be able to fish during the month of July, and this regulation change is intended to provide that opportunity,” Miller said. “We listened to anglers and experts alike during the Lake Michigan Yellow Perch Summit held March 22, 2014 in Chicago, and this rule change was developed as a result of that meeting.”
Director Miller initiated the Yellow Perch Summit in 2013 after writing to other natural resources agencies seeking support for a refocusing of management efforts on Lake Michigan yellow perch. The number of yellow perch available to anglers and commercial fishing operations peaked in the mid-1980s, declined precipitously in the early 1990s and has remained low since that time. Commercial harvest was reduced in the mid-1990s and closed in all Lake Michigan jurisdictions except for Green Bay by 1997.
Invasive species like zebra and quagga mussels have altered Lake Michigan’s food web, removing the microscopic plants and animals many fish rely on during the early life stages of their existence. As a result, fewer fish are surviving to adulthood and yellow perch have not rebounded to levels seen in the mid-1980s.
“Illinois’ regulations are part of a multi-jurisdictional approach to managing yellow perch in Lake Michigan,” said IDNR Lake Michigan Program Manager Vic Santucci. “We work with other state natural resources agencies to develop policies that promote recreation and protect this valuable resource. We also take into account the local abundance of yellow perch, spawning habitat available, and the number of anglers in the Chicago region with access to the lake when we set season dates and daily limits for Illinois.”
To see a summary of the Lake Michigan Yellow Perch Summit, visit: http://www.glfc.org/lakecom/lmc/Lake_Michigan_Yellow_Perch_Summit_Report_2014.pdf
For more information on the Great Lakes Fisheries Commission, visit: http://www.glfc.org/
Rend Lake Fishing Report by Randy Cordray, Natural Resource Specialist, US Army Corps of Engineers
|SPECIES||RATING||BAIT OF CHOICE||SUGGESTED LOCATIONS||REGULATIONS|
|LARGEMOUTH BASS||Good||Worms, black and blue jigs, minnows, and spinner baits.||Fish in shallow bays near brush cover and bushes. Fish around bridges and along the rocks. Reports of fish being caught around Jackie Branch, Sandusky Cove, and below the dam.||14” minimum length limit, 6 daily creel limit. 1 fish daily creel limit in PONDS 14” minimum length.|
|CRAPPIE||Excellent||Jigs are working well. Quarter-Ounce pink and white tub jigs. Small & Medium Minnows. Meal worms.||Fish the main lake drop off areas. Try the Gun Creek Area. From shore fish near structures, hot spots are Jackie Branch, Sandusky, Sailboat Harbor, Marcum coves, and Ina Boat Ramp.||25 fish daily creel limit with no more than 10 fish 10 inches or longer|
|BLUEGILL||Good||Crickets, worms, wax worms, meal worms, small jigs.||Fish in the back of necks and on flat shallow banks and on the rocks. Try fishing shallow with crickets, worms or small jigs. From shore try Sailboat Harbor.||10 fish daily creel limit in PONDS.|
|CHANNELCATFISH||Excellent||Sonny’s stink bait, Hoss’s Hawg Bait, leeches, night crawlers, and large minnows.||Try the Waltonville Dam, Turnip Patch, Jackie Branch, and North Sandusky Day Use Area. Set line 3-4’ from the shore over rocks. Try leeches in moving water. Try deeper water in the middle of the lake. Drift fish the flats.||6 fish daily creel limit in PONDS.Jugs must be attended at all times while fishing.|
|WHITE BASS||Fair||Jig and curly tail grubs, inline spinners.||Fish in shallow bays near brush cover and bushes. Fish around along the rocks and dropoffs. Reports of fish being caught around the 154 bridges.||20 fish creel limit.No more than 3 fish 17” or longer daily|
|Information as of: 06/10/2014LAKE LEVEL: 409.32 AVERAGE POOL FOR THIS DATE: 407.39 WATER TEMP: 76°F|
Use of a minnow seine, cast net, or shad scoop for bait collecting within 1000 yards downstream of the Rend Lake dam and spillway is prohibited.
Maps of the Fish Attractor tree locations along with GPS readings are available at the Rend Lake Corps of Engineers Project Office. Contact Randy Cordray for more information at (618) 724-2493. In order to maintain a cleaner recreation area, anglers and bow fishermen fishing below the dam are asked to return dead rough fish to the water.
Illinois Bowfishing Record Carp info by Ed DeVries BAI President
Lucas Guarnaccio took this monster out of lake Minear in northern Illinois on June 5th. It weighed in at 79.4lbs! The fish was taken with an Innerloc Grappler point.
Lake Shelbyville fishing report by Steve Welch
The lake is holding at about 602.4 or just a little over two-feet above summer pool. The water color is very clear and temps are running about 75. The walleye have got tough since the lake came up and for the most part vanished. We have been crappie fishing this past week for the post spawn crappie. They are fattening up after the spawn and really biting. We have experienced days this week where close to 200 were caught. Unfortunately you catch a ton of short fish and it takes 200 to get 45 for a three man limit. But that is the fun in it. The largemouth bass have moved shallow and we are catching plenty of nice fish pulling spinners for the walleye.
I had a very good day white bass fishing this past week and we caught over 200 in just 90 minutes then several cold fronts came through and they never came up again. We need warmer weather and it looks like this week we will have it. If you have never experienced a white bass surface explosion these next couple of weeks is the time to see one. We saw a school a quarter mile wide and a quarter mile long on Wednesday exploding on the surface so violent that they were causing a wave as tall as any boat would make and you could see the fish in the wave on the surface attacking baitfish. Blue Herons were diving into them as well. Guys I have in the boat and a half dozen nice walleye and some very nice white bass so clients are going home with a ton of fillets
Record Fundraiser at Tournament and Kids Fishing Derby report by Neal Miller, Exelon Corp
Exelon’s Fishing for a Cure tournament raised a record $65,000 for the Coal City and Diamond Tornado Disaster Relief Fund. The total represents donations from the April team bass fishing tournament, and the kid’s fishing derby held Saturday, June 7 at Godley Park.
“This has been a great day,” said Illinois State Sen. Sue Rezin, following the kid’s fishing derby. “Fishing for a Cure is a great event that brings families together while promoting a cause that benefits the entire community.”
The money raised will help the more than 240 homeowners and business owners affected by the devastating tornado that swept through the Coal City and Diamond communities last November.
Fifty youngsters, ranging from age 2 to 12, sought bragging rights for the most fish caught and the biggest. Jacqueline Dodge of Wilmington caught the biggest fish, a 22 inch whopper of a catfish. She also snagged the trophy for most fish caught in her age group with five. She competed in the 5 and under age category. Rounding out her age group, Mason Gardner of Custer Park reeled in four fish, with Matt Ericks of Morris catching three.
In the 6-8 age division, Tina Ericks of Morris took top honors, snaring six fish. Second place went to Katie Oleniczak of Plainfield and Lance Cuddy of Coal City took third.
Auston Kap of Lockport netted first place in the 9-12 age division, catching eight fish. Destiny Dodge of Wilmington took second and Jace Shaw of Coal City took third place.
The honors for smallest fish, five inches, went to Micah Ludvick of Bourbonnais.
All proceeds raised through tournament entry fees, raffles and sponsorships go to the recipient charity, which is selected annually by station employees. Organizations and businesses contributing to the cause include:
· D Construction
· Belgio’s Catering
· Demark, Inc.
· Monical’s Pizza
· T&C Anglers and Antlers
Since its inaugural tournament in 2002, Fishing for a Cure has raised more than $365,000 for local and regional charities. Last year’s event raised $57,000 for the Alzheimer’s Association of Greater Illinois.
Braidwood Generating Station is approximately 60 miles southwest of Chicago. The station’s two nuclear energy units can produce a total of more than 2,300 megawatts of carbon free electricity – enough to power more than 2 million typical homes.
Neal Miller, Sr. Manager, Nuclear Communications
Hayward Wisconsin area fishing report by Ken HUSKER O'Malley
Hey Don, Spending some time up in Northern Wisconsin. One word to describe the fishing. Awesome. Water temps are between 65-67. Bass are being caught on x-raps, senkos, and gobie imitating baits. Catching 50-60 per day. Walleye are being caught in weeds on a jig and leech. Attached a few pics.
Just wrapped another excellent trip to the Northwoods. Weather was fantastic much like the fishing. Smallmouth have been good on topwaters early morning and late evening off rock points. Northern have been caught fishing in-line spinners by Simms Spins in 8-12 feet worked over new weed growth. Largemouth have been good midday working a senko wacky rigged pitching to shoreline cover. Here are a few pics.
Water Werks Fishing Team
Waterfowl Blind Drawing info by Chris Young IL DNR
SPRINGFIELD, IL – Waterfowl hunters are encouraged to mark their calendars for upcoming waterfowl hunting blind site random drawings to be held at several public hunting areas in Illinois this summer.
Duck and goose hunters must register in person for waterfowl blind site drawings and must be present at the drawing – held at each location designated below immediately after the registration period – to claim their blind sites. Mail-in registrations are not accepted. Blind allocations for these sites are good for one year. To participate in a drawing, applicants must present a 2013 or 2014 Illinois hunting or sportsman combination license and a 2013 or 2014 Illinois Migratory Waterfowl Stamp at the time they register, unless exempted by law. Applicants must be at least 16 years old by the date of the drawing.
Applicants needing to purchase new licenses and stamps should do so prior to the drawing. Most blind drawing locations will not have license sales available. Licenses and stamps are available at any DNR Direct license and permit vendor, through the IDNR website at www.dnr.illinois.gov, or by calling 1-888-6-PERMIT (1-888-673-7648).
Registrants are no longer required to possess a valid Illinois Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card from the Illinois State Police to participate in blind drawings.
Also, in order to be an eligible applicant for the drawing, the participant must not have his or her hunting privileges suspended or revoked by the IDNR or any other jurisdiction at the time of the drawing. Out-of-state residents must have a 2013 or 2014 non-resident hunting license for Illinois and a 2013 or 2014 Illinois Migratory Waterfowl Stamp.
The schedule for 2014 blind drawings is listed below:
SATURDAY, JULY 26, 2014 (Blinds allocated for one year)
- Chain O' Lakes State Park and Redwing Slough/Deer Lake State Natural Area, Lake County: registration for both sites 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at Oak Point day use area, 1/5 mile east of the Fox River on the south side of Illinois Route 173. Hunters will be allowed to register for only one of the two sites.
- Des Plaines State Fish and Wildlife Area, Will County: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the site office, two miles northwest of Wilmington off exit 241 on Interstate 55.
- Kankakee River State Park and Momence Wetlands, Kankakee and Will Counties: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. for both sites at the Kankakee River State Park office, five miles northwest of Bourbonnais on Illinois Route 102. Hunters will be allowed to register for only one of the two sites.
- Mazonia State Fish and Wildlife Area, Grundy County: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the site office just off Illinois Route 53, two miles southeast of Braceville.
- Shabbona Lake State Recreation Area, DeKalb County: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the park office. Directions - go 2½ miles south of Shabbona on Shabbona Road, turn east on Shabbona Grove Road and go ½ mile (office is on left side of the road).
- Sinnissippi Lake, Whiteside County: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at Harry Oppold Marina, on Stouffer Road on the east edge of Sterling.
- William Powers State Recreation Area, Cook County: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the boat launch, 126th St. and Ave. 0, Chicago.
SUNDAY, JULY 27, 2014 (Blinds allocated for one year)
- Anderson Lake State Fish and Wildlife Area, Fulton County: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the area check station, 13½ miles southwest of Havana on Illinois Route 100.
- Clear Lake, Mason County: registration 10a.m. - 2 p.m. at Sand Ridge State Forest Headquarters, 25799E CTY RD. 2300N, Forest City. Phone 309-597-2212. Follow the signs from Manito or Forest City.
- Lake DePue State Fish and Wildlife Area, Bureau County: registration
10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at Oak Grove Park, ¾ miles west of DePue on Illinois Route 29.
- Marshall State Fish and Wildlife Area, including the Sparland Unit, Marshall County: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the area check station, five miles south of Lacon on Illinois Route 26.
- Rice Lake State Fish and Wildlife Area, Fulton County: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the area check station, three miles south of Banner on Route 24.
- Sanganois State Fish and Wildlife Area, Cass and Mason Counties: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. On the east side of the maintenance building, two miles north of Chandlerville on Illinois Route 78 (follow the signs to Sanganois).
- Spring Lake State Fish and Wildlife Area and Pekin Lake State Fish and Wildlife Area, Tazewell County: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the south park office area, two miles north of Manito on County Rd. 16 (Manito Rd.) and eight miles west and south on Spring Lake Rd.
- Starved Rock State Park, LaSalle County: registration 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. at the Point Shelter day use area on Illinois Route 71, about four miles east of Illinois Route 178 or 5½ miles west of Illinois Route 23 in South Ottawa.
- Woodford State Fish and Wildlife Area, Woodford County: registration 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the area check station, 5½ miles north of Spring Bay on Illinois Route 26.
Mississippi River Unclaimed and Unregistered Blinds
Mississippi River Pools 16, 17, & 18 (second year of two-year allocation). Pool 16 - unregistered blinds and blinds not passing inspection may be claimed on a first-come, first-served basis by calling the district wildlife biologist between 8 a.m. and noon at 815-273-2733, two weeks before the opening day of duck season. Pool 17 and 18 - use the same procedure, except phone 309-344-2617.
Additional hunting information and maps on the above sites can be accessed at http://dnr.state.il.us/lands/landmgt/hunter_fact_sheet/index.htm
Niagara New York area fishing report by Bill Hilts Jr.
1. Lake Ontario and tributaries – Fishing was tough this week, with a few glimmers of hope shining through for those that could find pockets of warmer water. Last Thursday in the Buffalo Sabres Alumni Charity Fishing Outing, it was Capt. Jerry Felluca of Hilton coming through with a three-peat by winning the big fish contest with a 26.3 pound king salmon. The following day, it was Dave Antenori and his Screamer team winning the best three fish contest in the Don Johannes-Pete DeAngelo Memorial and Capt. Harry Zimmerman of Ohio reeling in the biggest fish of the day – a 23 pound king. What a difference a week can make, though, especially as it relates to fishing. In the first weekend of the Niagara USA version of the 30th Annual Lake Ontario Pro-Am Salmon Team Tournament out of the ports of Olcott and Wilson, tournament limit catches were the norm. In the final weekend of the two-tournament contest held May 31-June 1, only one team had a 12-fish limit both days – and they won the tournament. In the Classic Division of the two-day tournament, Reel Excitement led by Capt. Bob Songin of Rochester was the top dog by putting together two consistent days of fishing for a total score of 360.2 points (based on 10 points per fish and a point per pound for the contest). They were fishing the Niagara Bar area for most of their fish, using spoons to take a majority of their fish. In the Trophy Division of the tournament, which represents the best five fish each day, Screamer led by Dave Antenori of Pennsylvania moved in from eighth place after the first day to nip Day One leader Ace and Capt. Jim Samia of Massachusetts by less than three points – 198.05 to 195.10. For the Niagara USA Classic Cup, awarded for consistency over the two weekends, top team was Capt. Chris LoPresti’s Maverick team with a final score of 533 – earning a check for $20,000. In the Niagara USA Trophy Cup, Antenori scored 538 overall to win the $5,000 check. In the Recreational Open Division, Renegade led by Anthony LaRock of Burt won top honors with a score of 85.55 points which included a big fish of 22.27 pounds. For the Sunday Recreational Open contest, Tri-Lakes, led by Matthew Briggs of Arkport was the leading scorer with a total of 75.84 points. They also weighed in big fish for the day, a 22.79 pound king salmon. In the battle for supremacy in the Open Cup, Renegade came out on top over Balls Deep 3 by a score of 169.23 points to 164.47 points – another close battle of consistent performers. With all of the east wind, the warmer water has moved around and it’s been difficult to figure out where the fish are. One of the keys for one of the teams was to fish higher in the water column. This weekend is the Oak Orchard Open tournament so teams are still being tight-lipped on where the best spot are and what baits are working best. We will try and have a better report next week.
2. Lower Niagara River – Trout are still cooperating nicely for boat and shore anglers with Devil’s Hole and the Niagara Bar being the two primary destinations for fishermen. Minnows and Kwikfish work best for the trout right now, but shore anglers can still toss out spoons and spinners to take fish. Capt. Jeff Draper of Grand Island reported some nice steelhead and lake trout earlier this week at both locations. Capt. Steve Drabczyk of Lewiston did one better when it took Cory Andrews of Youngstown down to the mouth of the river and worked the current rip near the Coast Guard station with flies. He ended up with three Coho salmon, one steelhead, three smallmouth bass and two sheepshead the other day. The stairs leading down to the shoreline at Artpark is still not completed but they are getting close.
3. Upper Niagara River – Waters are warming quickly in Lake Erie and that means the upper river action should be improving for warm water fish species. Bass fishing has been good on tube jigs around Strawberry and Motor islands, as well as near the Huntley plant. Perch have been hitting around Grand Island in 15-18 feet of water. In the Erie Canal, don’t forget the White’s 10th Annual Kids Free Fishing Derby on June 7 at Widewaters Marina in Lockport from 8 am to noon. Call 578-7932 for more info. Also on June 7 is the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge’s 23rd Annual Youth Fishing Derby from 8 to 11 am at the Rickneck Overlook on Oak Orchard Ridge Road. Call 585-948-5445 for more info.
Bill Hilts, Jr. Director, Outdoor Promotions
Lake of the Woods Minnesota fishing report from Joe Henry
High water has only seemed to fill buckets faster this week. Jigging still the go to method for trophy walleyes and eater sized fish. Try Twin Islands, Zippel Bay, Morris Point, Lighthouse Gap 18-20 or 22-26 feet tipped with frozen shiner. Reports also good jigging up by Garden, West Bar, Knight and Bridges 20-26'. Good reports of drifting with crawler or leech harnesses in front of Long Point, Twin Islands, Graceton, the Gap, and Pine Island 8-10 or 6-17.
Up at the NW Angle, good numbers of walleyes, pike, and bass. Hot walleye action both in MN and Ontario. Try west side of Little Oak, Lake Trails area of Oak Island and rock structure around Brush Island. Jigging, pulling spinners, and trolling cranks doing well in 8-30'. Gold or pink hot colors. Muskie season starts this Saturday June 21st in MN and Ontario. For more info, www.LakeoftheWoodsMN.com.