The State Department of Environmental Protection has issued its weekly inland and marine fishing report for the week starting October 6.
FISHING REPORT NUMBER 25
2010 FALL BROODSTOCK ATLANTIC SALMON STOCKING BEGINS
§ DEP began its annual stockings of surplus broodstock Atlantic salmon this week by releasing 100 salmon into the Shetucket River, 45 salmon into Crystal Lake (Ellington) and 45 salmon into Mount Tom Pond (Morris-Litchfield-Washington). Next week the Naugatuck River will be stocked with 100 salmon. These fish average 9.5 pounds apiece and range in size from 4 to 20 pounds each. In November, DEP expects to have 700 more salmon available from its Kensington Hatchery following spawning.
§ DEP will again be stocking several lakes with broodstock Atlantic salmon. In eastern CT, Crystal Lake is being stocked, and in western CT, Mount Tom Pond. The regulations for broodstock Atlantic salmon released into lakes and ponds are different from the regulations for salmon on the Naugatuck and Shetucket Rivers. In each lake, the regulations for methods, seasons and minimum lengths for salmon will be the same as for trout in that specific water body but the daily creel limit will be one salmon per day. (Please refer to the 2010 CT Angler’s Guide for trout regulations).
§ Regulations for broodstock remain the same on the Shetucket and Naugatuck Rivers. In rivers, angling for Atlantic salmon is restricted to CATCH-AND-RELEASE ONLY through November 30. From December 1, 2010, through March 31, 2011, the daily creel limit for Atlantic salmon will be one. During the open season in the rivers, the legal method for taking Atlantic salmon is limited to angling using a single fly, or an artificial lure with a single free swinging hook and no additional weight can be added to the line above the fly or lure.
§ On the Shetucket River, anglers can fish for salmon downstream from the Scotland Dam (Windham) to the Water Street Bridge in Norwich (the first bridge upstream of Norwich Harbor). The salmon are stocked into one designated Atlantic Salmon Broodstock Area, from the Scotland Dam to the Occum Dam.
§ Anglers are allowed to fish for salmon in the Naugatuck River from the confluence of the East and West Branches (Torrington) downstream to the Housatonic River (Derby). Anglers may also fish for Atlantic salmon in the Housatonic River downstream of Derby Dam. The salmon are stocked into two designated Atlantic Salmon Broodstock Areas on the Naugatuck River, the “Campville Section” of the upper Naugatuck River from Route 118 downstream to the Thomaston Flood Control Dam (Litchfield-Thomaston) and the “Beacon Falls Section” of the lower Naugatuck, from Prospect Street (Naugatuck) downstream to Pines Bridge Road (Route 42 bridge, Beacon Falls).Note that in the Beacon Falls area, the area along the RR tracks in Naugatuck State Forest is not stocked due to safety concerns.
§ From October 1st through March 31st, fishing for other species in these designated Atlantic Salmon Broodstock Areas is restricted to the gear legal for Atlantic salmon.
Fall trout stocking update- This week DEP is stocking approximately 2,550 trophy-size brown trout (all 12 inch and bigger fish). In western CT, Mount Tom Pond (200 fish), Mohawk Pond (150 fish), Westside Pond (250 fish), Stillwater Pond (200 fish), the Black Rock Pond Trout Park (150 fish) the Wolfe Park (Great Hollow pond) Trout Park (500 fish) and the lower Farmington River TMA (500 fish) are being stocked. In eastern CT, now that flows have improved sufficiently, the Salmon River TMA (600 fish) will be stocked.
Rivers & streams – Conditions should be good for fishing this weekend. Comfortable temperatures and sunny skies are forecast, and the recent rains have improved stream flows throughout the state, with many rivers and streams currently at or above their typical fall levels. Streamers and nymphing are the way to go in October. For streamers try white, yellow and brown colors. Patterns to try include White Wooly Buggers, Muddlers, Micky Finn, Grey or Black Ghosts (#4-10). For nymphs, bottom bounce Caddis pupa (#14-16), Serendipity (#14-16), Pheasant Tail (#12-20), Prince (#6-18) and Hare’s ear (#8-20).
Farmington River – The fishing has generally been very good and conditions should be excellent for the weekend. Flows have cleared and dropped quickly from their very high levels early last weekend, and are currently moderate, about 200 cfs at Riverton. The Still River is currently adding about 590 cfs below Riverton, but should drop again for the weekend). Morning water temperatures in the West Branch TMA are in the mid to upper 50’s °F.
Hatches/patterns: The bugs consist of Isonychia bicolor (major hatch, #12-14, fast water, afternoon/evening), Blue Wing Olives (Drunella & Baetis sps., #22-28, mid-late afternoon), Cahills/Summer (Stenonema ithaca (#12-18), Sulfurs duns (Heptagenia sps., #14-18, below the dam due to low temperatures, morning; afternoon to early evening for spinners), Caddis (tan #14-18, all day; green #22-26, evening; summer pupa #18-20 morning), Midges (#22-32, morning), Black Ants (#16-18, mid day in fast water), Black Beetles (#16-18, mid day), Flying Ants (#18-22, mid day, when windy/humid) and Stone Hopper (#10-12, mid day). Rusty Spinners (#18-26) have been producing in the evening.
Housatonic River - Trout fishing and conditions should be very good this weekend. Over 10,000 fish were stocked in September, good fall weather is forecast, water temperatures are good for fall fishing (mid 50’s°F, mornings). Flows are also much improved from their lows a week ago. The rains late last week briefly raised flows to un-fishable levels, but they continue to clear and have dropped quickly, currently 1,000 cfs at Falls village and 1,400 at Gaylordsville. By this weekend, flows should be at very comfortable levels for fishing.
Hatches patterns include Blue Wing Olive (#18-24, early morning; spinner fall in evening), Leadwing Coachman (#10-12 evening), Cahills/Summer (#12-14), and Black caddis (#14-20, early morning & evening). Ants can be very important this time of the year. Trout will ignore everything else when they are on the water. Try Black/Cinnamon Ants (#14-18, mid day in fast water), Sulfurs (#16-18), Black Beetles (#14-18, mid day), Stone Hopper (#8-10, mid day) and Flying Ants (#16-18, mid day, when windy/humid). Nymphing the pockets, deeper riffles and pool heads has also been productive.
Lakes & Ponds- Trout fishing is fair, with reports from Highland Lake, Squantz Pond, Mashapaug Lake, Crystal Lake (Ellington, 4 colors of lead line), Mohawk Pond, East Twin Lake and West Hill Pond.
LARGEMOUTH BASS fishing has gotten tougher, although a few lakes do report good fishing. The best reports are from Quaddick Reservoir, Hopeville Pond, East Twin Lake, Coventry Lake, Mashapaug Lake and Lake Wononskopomuc. Fair reports are from Candlewood Lake, Crystal Lake (Ellington), Lake Lillinonah, Saugatuck Reservoir, Gardner Lake, Lake Housatonic, Winchester Lake, Morey Pond, Bantam Lake and Moodus Reservoir, and some action also reported from Bigelow Pond, Twin Brooks Park Pond, Bishop Swamp Pond, Rogers Lake, Cedar Lake, Pickerel Lake and Billings Lake. It’s been slow for bass at Mudge Pond, Lake Zoar, Halls Pond, Highland Lake and Lake Waramaug.
SMALLMOUTH BASS action is variable, with reports from Candlewood Lake (fair), Squantz Pond (action picking up), Aspinook Pond (good, 20 smallies caught by one pair of anglers), Coventry Lake (slow), Highland Lake (tough), Gardner Lake (slow) and Mashapaug Lake (fair).
NORTHERN PIKE are being caught at Winchester Lake, Bantam Lake (pike up to 32 inches among the reported catches), Hopeville Pond and Pachaug Pond.
WALLEYE fishing is reported to be good to very good in Saugatuck Reservoir (20”+). Some catches also reported from Squantz Pond, Lake Saltonstall and Mashapaug Lake.
CHAIN PICKEREL – good reports for pickerel from Bantam Lake, Lake Wononskopomuc, Halls Pond and Twin Brooks Park Pond.
BLACK CRAPPIE are providing some good action at Park Pond.
CARP have put on a good showing in the Quinnipiac River.
CONNECTICUT RIVER – In one week flows have gone from atypically low to high. STRIPED BASS action in the lower river is still good (try just after dark). NORTHERN PIKE (32” & 37”) fishing had been good in the coves last week (catches included 37 and 32 inch pike). Some 20 lb plus CARP have been caught recently. LARGEMOUTH BASS fishing had been fair from rock Hill down to the Salmon River. SMALLMOUTH BASS action had been fair to good in the Enfield area.
NOTES & NOTICES:
MOODUS RESERVOIR (Lower & Upper, down 3 feet, launching of trailer boats will be difficult to impossible), RAINBOW RESERVOIR (launch is closed) and TYLER LAKE (down 2.5 feet, launching of trailered boats may be difficult) are currently drawn down to facilitate dam repairs.
Upcoming scheduled drawdowns include:
- In eastern CT, “Winter” drawdowns (2-3 feet) of BASHAN LAKE, BESECK LAKE, GARDNER LAKE, LOWER BOLTON LAKE and MIDDLE BOLTON LAKE are scheduled to begin October 15th, BEACH POND is scheduled to begin October 20th and GLASGO POND on October 25th.
- LAKE ZOAR is currently scheduled to be drawn down starting October 16th with refilling scheduled to begin October 24th. LAKE LILLINONAH is currently scheduled to be drawn down beginning October 23th and ending October 31st.
- A 5 foot drawdown of HIGHLAND LAKE is scheduled to begin on October 15th.
The BAYBERRY LANE State Boat Launch (Groton) is closed for renovations until December 31st.
MARINE FISHING REPORT
Surface water temperatures in Long Island Sound (LIS) are in the mid 60’s °F. Check out the following web sites for more detailed water temperatures and marine boating conditions:
Reminders to anglers:
*The recreational fishing season for scup is now closed except for the party/charter boat fishery which remains open through October 11th (closed from October 12th to June 7th).
* The black sea bass recreational fishing season is open until Oct 11, then is closed from October 12 to October 31, and will reopen on November 1 (and close again on December 31).
BLUEFISH and STRIPER fishing is good to excellent and October is prime time! Fishing spots include the Watch Hill area, Ram Island Reef and East and West Clumps (Fishers Island Sound), Thames River, the Race (by Race Rock and Valiant Rock), outer Bartlett Reef, the Sluiceway, Plum Gut, Pigeon Rip, warm water discharge from Millstone Power Station, Harkness Memorial State Park, Black Point, Hatchett Reef, lower Connecticut River, Long Sand Shoal, Cornfield Point, Southwest Reef, Duck Island area, Sixmile Reef, Hammonasset Beach State Park, Falkner Island area, reefs off Guilford and Branford, New Haven Harbor, Charles Island area and the sand spit at Silver Sands State Park, lower Housatonic River, buoys #18 and #20 off Bridgeport, Stratford Shoal/Middle Ground, Penfield Reef, Norwalk Islands, Cable and Anchor Reef, and Stamford and Greenwich Harbors.
TAUTOG fishing is in full swing on any of the rock piles and major rocky reefs throughout LIS. Bottom rigs with duel hooks baited with hermit crabs, Asian crabs or green crabs work well for these tough fighting fish. Location is key in having a successful trip. Just a few feet off can be the difference.
HICKORY SHAD fishing is fair to good in the Niantic River and lower Connecticut River.
BLACK SEA BASS fishing is fair to good in LIS on the local rocky reefs and wrecks.
LITTLE TUNNY have been reported off Watch Hill, south shore of Fishers Island, Pine Island area off Groton, the Race, Bartlett Reef, and between Millstone Point and Jordan Cove.
For regulation updates and fishing/crabbing information, please check out our web site or pick up the 2010 Angler’s Guide.