FISHING REPORT NUMBER 5
CHANNEL CATFISH – DEEP conducted its annual catfish stocking this week. A total of 5,000 adult catfish (14-18 inch fish averaging 2 lbs apiece) and 15,000 yearling catfish (9-12 inch fish) were stocked into 18 water bodies scattered throughout the state, including six additional lakes & ponds being stocked for the first time with catfish.
The adult catfish were released into five of the current Community Fishing Areas, Bunnells Pond (Bridgeport) – 1,000 fish, Keney Park Pond (Hartford) -250 fish, Lakewood Lake (Waterbury)- 1,000 fish, Lake Wintergreen (Hamden/New Haven) -1,000 fish, and Mohegan Park Pond (Spaulding Pond, Norwich) -250 fish, and two new areas also located in urban areas, Freshwater Pond (Enfield) – 500 fish, and Pickett’s Pond (in Osborndale State Park, Derby) – 500 fish.
The yearling catfish were stocked into Black Pond (Middlefield) -1,200 fish, Maltby Lake (Orange/West Haven) 2 -350 fish, Maltby Lake 3 -350 fish, Lower Bolton Lake (Bolton) -2,500 fish, Pattaconk Lake (Chester) -800 fish, Silver Lake (Meriden) – 2,200 fish and Lake Wintergreen (Hamden) – 750 fish, all stocked since 2007 and four new areas, Hopeville Pond (Griswold) – 2,100 fish, Quinebaug Lake (Wauregan Reservoir, Killingly) – 1,650 fish, Stillwater Pond (Torrington) – 1,650 fish, and Lake Kenosia (Danbury) – 1,450 fish. One lake stocked in previous years, Lake Quonnipaug (Guilford), is no longer being stocked as the fishery was not meeting program expectations.
DEEP’s spring trout stocking season is winding down. Trout stocking in western CT finishes this week and eastern CT stockings finish up next week.
Rivers & streams – Conditions should be good for this weekend. Flows are generally moderate and comfortable for fishing, the weekend forecast is for “summertime’ weather, and there are still plenty of recently stocked trout waiting for anglers in many places.
Fishing has been good in a number of areas throughout the state, with the best reports from the West Branch and mainstem Farmington River (very good, a number of 3-4 lb trout among the catches), Salmon River, Mill River (Hamden), Housatonic River, Pootatuck River, East Aspetuck River (29 fish), Pequonnock River and Norwalk River (a 6 lb Rainbow among the catches, really good near the YMCA in Wilton). Some action also reported from the Willimantic River, Natchaug River, Hammonassett River, Shetucket River, Naugatuck River, Mt. Hope River and Eightmile River.
Farmington River – Fishing has been very good (with a number of 3-4 lb trout being caught) and conditions should be comfortable for fishing this weekend. Flows are currently clear and moderate (294 cfs at Riverton, plus an additional 161 cfs from the Still River) and water temperatures are in the low to mid 50’s°F.
Hatches include Blue Winged Olive (#16-22), Blue Quills (#18-20) [a.k.a. paralep], Tan Caddis (#16-18), Sulphur (#16-20) [a.k.a. Vitreus] (ending) and March Browns (#10-12). Anglers can expect fly fishing to become a challenge as the hatches are shifting. Patterns working include Blue Wing Olives (#18-20, mid-late afternoon), Caddis (tan #14-18, all day) and Midges (#22-28) are the current patterns working. Hendricksons (#12-14, 4-6 pm.) and nymphing are both producing well.
Housatonic River – Trout fishing was good to very good last week, and conditions should also be good for this weekend. Flows are clear, moderate and very fishable, currently 1,030 cfs at Falls Village and 1,480 cfs at Gaylordsville. Morning water temperatures are in the mid to upper 50’s °F (TMA area).
Current hatches include Green Caddis (started this week, mornings & evenings) and Brown/Tan Caddis (#14-18). Successful flies include March Browns (#10-12, 4pm to dark) & Gray Foxes (#12-14), Green caddis (#14-18, early morning & evening), Sulphurs (#16), Isonychia (#10-12), Blue Wing Olives (#18-20). Midges (#22-26) are being seen at the mouths of tributaries. Golden Stoneflies (#6) were being hit hard early this week.
Rivers and streams stocking update (week of 5/21-5/25). This week in eastern CT, Blackwells Brook, Coginchaug River, Farm River (lower & upper), Fenton River (Mansfield), Five Mile River, French River, Hammonasset River (including the TMA), Hop River, Hunts Brook, Indiantown Brook, Latimer Brook, Mashamoquet Brook, Moosup River, Mount Hope River, Natchaug River, Pachaug River, Quanduck Brook, Quinebaug River, Shunock Brook, Skungamaug River and Willimantic River (including the TMA) are all scheduled to be stocked.
In western CT, the West Branch Farmington River (Goodwin Dam to upper boundary of year-round catch-and-release area) and Farmington River (from Route 219, New Hartford, to Route 177, Unionville) are scheduled to be stocked this week.
Reminder to anglers – Maps of all of the state’s trout streams and rivers showing the many stocking and access points are now available online at www.ct.gov/deep/troutstockingmaps. Note that stocking schedules are subject to change.
Lakes & Ponds – Trout fishing continues to be fair to good, with reports from Candlewood Lake (lots of action, fish are now being found throughout the lake), Squantz Pond (a 5 lb trout among the catches), Mashapaug Lake (on the tough side, try trolling at 12-18 ft), Lake Wononskopomuc (fair), East Twin Lake (just ok) and West Hill Pond (good). Other places to try include Crystal Lake (Ellington).
Some action also reported from Bigelow Pond, Lake Hayward, Mohawk Pond, Lake McDonough, Long Pond and Gardner Lake.
Lakes and ponds stocking update (week of 5/21 – 5/25). In eastern CT, Black Pond (Middlefield), Black Pond (Woodstock), Cedar Lake, Gardner Lake, Green Falls Reservoir, Mashapaug Lake, Millers Pond, Quonnipaug Lake, Rogers Lake, Lake Saltonstall and Uncas Lake are scheduled for stocking this week. In western CT, Highland Lake is being stocked this week.
Trout Parks – Fishing remains good at the Trout Parks. This week, three trout parks, Day Pond, Natchaug River, and Mohegan Park Pond (Spaulding Pond) are scheduled to be stocked.
LARGEMOUTH BASS fishing was generally fair to good last week. The best reports were from Rogers Lake (very good, including a 6.8 lb largemouth), Saugatuck Reservoir (including a 6 lb bass), Highland Lake, Bantam Lake, Lake Saltonstall, Hanover Pond, Mashapaug Lake, Moodus Reservoir (good action, no lunkers) and Candlewood Lake (fair action, but a number of bigger bass including a 7.2 lb fish and several 6 lb plus fish) and fair reports from Wonoskopomuc Lake, Long Pond, Gardner Lake, Mansfield Hollow Reservoir, Lake Lillinonah, Burr Pond, Tyler Lake and Quaddick Reservoir. Powers Lake and Amos Lake have been on the slow side.
SMALLMOUTH BASS – fishing is variable, with reports from Candlewood Lake (very good action here last week with a of number of smallies in the 3-4 lb range), Squantz Pond (some nice action reported), Gardner Lake (mediocre), Lake Lillinonah (fair), Highland Lake (fair), Bantam Lake (good) and Mashapaug Lake.
WALLEYE- Good reports for walleye from Lake Saltonstall, Squantz Pond, Batterson Park Pond and Mashapaug Lake.
NORTHERN PIKE catches reported from Winchester Lake, Bantam Lake, Hopeville Pond and Mansfield Hollow Reservoir (recent catches include a 10 lb plus pike).
CONNECTICUT RIVER – Flows have dropped and temperatures are warming again. SHAD can be found throughout the river up through Holyoke, MA (the fishway at the Holyoke Dam has passed over 230,000 shad so far this spring), with some good action reported (one angler reported 75 fish caught this past weekend, while another caught 21 shad in the Windsor area). STRIPED BASS are in the river up through Enfield. Schoolies and Legal size fish are being caught. Some nice CARP catches reported from the Hartford area recently, including a new state record (see box on right). CATFISH are providing consistent action throughout the river. SMALLMOUTH BASS fishing was fair to good (including a nice report from the Middletown area at and up into the Mattabesset River). NORTHERN PIKE are reported in the Haddam Meadows area.
NOTES & NOTICES:
EASTERN CT LAKE LEVELS & BOAT LAUNCHES. Beachdale Pond (launchable with care) and Wyassup Lake (impossible to launch) continue to be drawn down for dam repairs.
The FirstLight Power Housatonic River flow information automated phone (1-888-417-4837) is currently down and will remain out of service until sometime in June.
The state boat launch on BANTAM LAKE at the old Beverly’s Marina site is now open to use. The launch is open 24/7 and parking for the launch is restricted to an absolute maximum of 20 vehicles with boat trailers.
MARINE FISHING REPORT
Surface water temperatures in Long Island Sound (LIS) range from the mid 50’s to low 60’s °F. Check out the follwing web sites for more detailed water temperatures and marine boating conditions:
STRIPED BASS fishing is good throughout LIS. Squid are abundant in eastern LIS while schools of bunker (Atlantic menhaden) are in western LIS. Live lining bunker or eels on three-way rigs or fish finder rigs is the ticket. Just remember to use circle hooks to avoid gut hooking. Striper spots include Watch Hill reefs to eastern tip of Fishers Island, the Race, Plum Gut, Millstone outflow, outer Bartlett Reef, Black Point, lower Connecticut River (DEP fishing pier) and along Great Island, Long Sand Shoal, Southwest Reef, Six Mile Reef, Falkner Island area, Thimble Islands to the Branford Reefs, New Haven Harbor (including Sandy Point), Milford Harbor breakwaters and Charles Island area including the tombolo, Stratford Shoal/Middle Ground, Housatonic River (up to the Derby Dam), Penfield Reef, around the Norwalk Islands, and the reefs off Stamford and Greenwich.
BLUEFISH fishing is better in western LIS with fish weighing in the double digits being reported. Bluefish spots include the Race, Millstone outflow, Plum Gut, Gardiners Bay, New Haven Harbor (Sandy Point), buoys 18 and 20 off Stratford Point, Stratford Shoal/Middle Ground, Penfield Reef, and the Norwalk Islands.
SUMMER FLOUNDER (fluke) fishing is good. The north side of Long Island from Horton Point over to Port Jefferson has been yielding big numbers but most are sub-legal size fish. Other spots include the south side of Fishers Island, Black Point/Niantic Bay, Westbrook-Clinton area, and off the New Haven breakwaters.
WINTER FLOUNDER can still be caught in the Pine Island area (Groton) and Niantic Bay. Just as a reminder, the winter flounder fishing season closes May 31.
A new state record common carp was caught by Michael Hudak (East Hartford, CT) on 5/16/2012 in the Hartford area of the Connecticut River during a night fishing trip. The fish was brought in on maize presented on the bottom. Michael had recently attended a carp fishing seminar put on by a local tackle shop and had gained some valuable experience fishing with other carp enthusiasts.
Many carp fishing enthusiasts are dedicated catch-and-release anglers and put returning the fish in good condition at the top of their priority list. Upon recognizing that he had a rather outstanding catch, Michael contacted a fellow carp angler who responded, complete with a CAG Limited (Carp Angler Group – a national carp fishing organization) state certified scale, and weighed the fish at the water’s edge. The new state record was then released back into the Connecticut River.
For Current Connecticut Recreational Fishing Regulations: Anglers should consult the new 2012 Connecticut Anglers Guide which is now available at most Town Clerks Offices, DEEP offices and at tackle stores selling fishing licenses. Anglers can purchase their fishing licenses online (www.ct.gov/deep/fishinglicense) or at participating town halls, DEEP field offices and fishing tackle vendors. Current regulations, electronic versions of the Angler’s Guide and additional information can all be accessed on the DEEP website at: www.ct.gov/deep/fishing .