Fishing Report For Week Of May 31
FISHING REPORT NUMBER 6
DEP’s spring trout stockings wrap up this week, with nearly 600,000 brook, brown, rainbow and tiger trout stocked since early March.
Rivers & streams – Conditions will be variable this weekend. Flows remain generally moderate and comfortable for fishing (and a bit lower than typical levels in a number of areas) but some rain is in the forecast for early in the weekend. Good reports last week from the West Branch and mainstem Farmington River (very good fishing reported), Housatonic River,
Hammonassett River, Mount Hope River and Salmon River (some nice catches, but flows are getting low). Some action also reported from the East Aspetuck River, Natchaug River, Quinnebaug River, Quinnipiac River, Coppermine Brook, Branford River, Eightmile River and Menunketesuck Brook.
Farmington River – Trout fishing remains very good. West Branch flows continue to be clear and moderate (291 cfs at Riverton, plus an additional 119 cfs from the Still River). Water temperatures are in the mid to upper 50’s°F.
Hatches include Blue Winged Olive (#16-22), Blue Quills (#18-20) [a.k.a. paralep], Tan Caddis (#16-18; starting), Sulphurs (#14-16) [a.k.a. Vitreus] and March Browns (#12-14). Blue Wing Olives (#20-24, mid-late afternoon), Caddis (tan #16-18, all day) and Midges (#20-32) are the current patterns working. Golden Stoneflies ((#6-16) are also working well.
Housatonic River – Fishing was very good last week. Flows have however increased (currently 1,600 cfs at Falls Village and 2,260 cfs at Gaylordsville) with limited visibility. Flows are beginning to clear and drop to more comfortable levels. Water Temperatures have been in the upper 60’s °F (mornings).
Hatches/patterns include Green Caddis (mornings & evenings), Brown/Tan Caddis (#14-18), 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) and Midges (#20-32). Golden Stoneflies (#6) were being hit hard early this week.
Rivers and streams stocking update (week of 5/29-6/1). This week in eastern CT, the Blackledge River (lower), Branford River, Eight Mile River (including the East Branch), Farm River (lower & upper), Hammonasset River (including the TMA), Hockanum River (above & below the TMA), Hop River, Jeremy River, Latimer Brook, Moosup River, Quinebaug River (Griswold area), Salmon River (including the TMA), Scantic River (upper & lower), Skungamaug River, Ten Mile River (Lebanon) and West River are all scheduled to be stocked.
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 has been variable, with the best reports from Candlewood Lake (good action throughout the lake, lots of 1-2 lb fish being caught), East Twin Lake (target 30-35 feet), Highland Lake (try 2nd bay, 4-5 colors), Mohawk Pond, Mount Tom Pond and West Hill Pond (try 25 feet). Some action also reported from Crystal Lake, Lake Wononskopomuc, Coventry Lake, Lake McDonough, Gardner Lake, bigelow Pond and Beach Pond (fair at best, and sometimes tough).
Lakes and ponds stocking update (week of 5/29 – 6/1). Bashan Lake, Beach Pond, Crystal Lake, Dodge Pond, Uncas Lake and Walkers Reservoir are scheduled for stocking this week.
Trout Parks – Anglers continue to find good action at the Trout Parks. This week, four trout parks, Chatfield Hollow, Day Pond, Mohegan Park Pondr and Valley Falls Park Pond Trout Parks are scheduled to be stocked.
LARGEMOUTH BASS fishing was generally good with some exceptions last week. The best reports were from Mudge Pond (very good), Eagleville Lake, Candlewood Lake (typical spring numbers, but more 4-5 lb largemouth are being caught), Highland Lake (spawn’s noticeably winding down, fish are being found in 5-7 feet of water), Hatch Pond (good action, no lunkers), Billings Lake, Lake Saltonstall, Gardner Lake (plenty of 1-2 lb fish, no lunkers), Mansfield Hollow Reservoir (surprising numbers of 3-lb fish being found). Nells Rock Reservoir. Fair reports from Lake Lillinonah, Nells Rock Reservoir, Quaddick Lake (catches include a 5.7 lb bass) and Saugatuck Reservoir. Slow fishing reported from Mono Pond, Pachaug Pond and Mashapaug Lake.
SMALLMOUTH BASS fishing is variable, with reports from Candlewood Lake (very good, but less 4-5 lb smallies in bags), Saugatuck Reservoir (fair), Lake Lillinonah (fair), Coventry Lake (tough), Lake McDonough (slow) and Highland Lake (fair-good) and Gardner Lake (not many being caught). Early season river smallie anglers are finding some nice action in the upper Housatonic River.
KOKANEE SALMON has been fair at East Twin Lake (try mornings) and good at West Hill Pond (try 35-38 feet).
WALLEYE catches reported from Lake Saltonstall, Squantz Pond (some are being caught but it’s been tougher fishing this spring than in the past several years), Batterson Park Pond and Mashapaug Lake.
NORTHERN PIKE are reported from Pachaug Pond, Bantam Lake, Quaddick Reservoir and Mansfield Hollow Reservoir.
CHANNEL CATFISH - Good reports for recently stocked catfish from Mohegan Park Pond, Keney Park Pond, Klake wintergreen and Lakewood Lake. DEEP stocked 20,000 channel catfish last Monday (May 21). These fish included 5,000 adult catfish (14-18 inch fish averaging 2 lbs apiece) stocked into five of the current Community Fishing Areas, Bunnells Pond (Bridgeport), Keney Park Pond (Hartford), Lakewood Lake (Waterbury)-, Lake Wintergreen (Hamden/New Haven), and Mohegan Park Pond (Spaulding Pond, Norwich), and two new areas also located in urban areas, Freshwater Pond (Enfield) and Pickett’s Pond (in Osborndale State Park, Derby).
The other 15,000 catfish are yearling size catfish (9-12 inch fish) that were released into Black Pond (Middlefield), Maltby Lakes 2 & 3 (Orange/West Haven), Lower Bolton Lake (Bolton), Pattaconk Lake (Chester), Silver Lake (Meriden), Lake Wintergreen (Hamden), Hopeville Pond (Griswold), Quinebaug Lake (Wauregan Reservoir, Killingly), Stillwater Pond (Torrington) and Lake Kenosia (Danbury).
CONNECTICUT RIVER – Following a week of comfortable, moderate flows, the river is now turbid with moderately high flows and some debris due to this week’s storms. Some STRIPED BASS are being found throughout the river, both schoolies and keepers. Fishing has been spotty however. SHAD are still reported in the river up to the Holyoke, MA area (as of 5/29 the Holyoke fishway has passed over 400,000 shad this year, the most in 20 years). CATFISH are providing steady action, with good reports from the Portland area. LARGEMOUTH BASS fishing has been fair to good, with the best reports from the Haddam/Salmon River cove area. a 9.3 lb largemouth was reportedly caught-and-release in the Haddam area. NORTHERN PIKE fishing has been good (coves and the Rocky Hill to Portland and Haddam Meadows areas best).
NOTES & NOTICES:
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.
LAKE ZOAR – A water ski clinic for the disabled is scheduled for Saturday, June 2 in the upper end of Lake Zoar. These events run from 9 am to 4 pm, and boaters are asked to take care when passing through this area (marked by buoys) of the lake, and avoid interfering with the event.
LAKE LILLINONAH – The annual lake clean-up organized by the ‘Friends of Lake Lillinonah” will be held this Saturday, June 2nd staging from the Route 133 state boat launch (this launch will remain open for use by the general public at all times during the clean-up). However, on Saturday morning, the lake level will be lowered to the minimum operating normal level to facilitate shoreline clean-up and use of the Pond Brook state boat launch by larger boats & trailers may be difficult at times this weekend.
Anglers on the SALMON RIVER should be aware that the current work in the Lyman Viaduct (Colchester) reconstruction project on Dickinson Creek, which includes filling in a large scour hole below the twin culverts and restoring fish passage (after 50+ years), may at times cause some turbidity. This turbidity may extend all the way down to Comstock Covered Bridge.
MARINE FISHING REPORT
Surface water temperatures in Long Island Sound (LIS) range from the low to mid 60’s °F. Check out the follwing web sites for more detailed water temperatures and marine boating conditions:
STRIPED BASS fishing remains good. The Race, outer Bartlett Reef, and Plum Gut have been pretty consistent fishing spots. Other striper locations include Watch Hill and the reefs in between the eastern tip of Fishers Island, Black Point, lower Connecticut River 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, Cable and Anchor Reef, and the reefs off Stamford and Greenwich. Live baits such as Atlantic menhaden (bunker), scup (porgy) and eels have been scoring well on cow bass weighing over 40 lbs! Just remember to use circle hooks in order to reduce gut hooking.
BLUEFISH fishing has improved dramatically with “rat” bluefish (2 to 4 lbs) racing around stealing baits meant for fluke! The Race, Pigeon Rip, and Plum Gut have been consistent chopper locations. Other spots include Millstone outflow, Gardiners Bay, Long Sand Shoal, Sixmile Reef, Falkner Island area, New Haven Harbor (Sandy Point), buoys 18 and 20 off Stratford Point, Stratford Shoal/Middle Ground, Penfield Reef, the Norwalk Islands, and Cable and Anchor Reef.
SUMMER FLOUNDER (fluke) fishing is good but you have to wade through a lot of shorts to get to that keeper slab. The north side of Long Island from Horton Point over to Port Jefferson is always a productive area. Other spots include the south side of Fishers Island (Isabella Beach, Wilderness Point), Black Point/Niantic Bay, Westbrook-Clinton area, Falkner Island area, New Haven Harbor, and off the mouth off the Housatonic River. Large silversides and small butterfish have been killer baits!
SCUP fishing is fair to good on the major reefs.
WEAKFISH can be found in the New Haven Harbor area but most catches are caught accidently by anglers targeting fluke.
WINTER FLOUNDER fishing season is closed from May 31st to Mar 31st.
For Current Connecticut Recreational Fishing Regulations: Anglers should consult the 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.
Come take a tour of the Rainbow Fishway-
See migrating fish in the underground viewing window.
DEEP’s annual open house at the Rainbow Fishway is this Saturday, June 2, from 10:00 am until 3:00 pm. The public is invited to visit the fishway and learn about both it and the fish it passes. During this day, the public can tour the facility and are encouraged to go downstairs and check out the underground viewing window. Shad and lamprey may be seen passing upstream, and Atlantic salmon are sometimes captured for breeding. Staff will be on hand to answer questions. This is a great activity for families, and there is no fee.
Directions to Rainbow Fishway:
From Rt. I-91, take exit 40 to Rt.20 (Bradley Airport Exit). Travel west to the Hamilton South exit. At the end of the exit ramp turn left. Turn right at the first intersection on to Rainbow Road. The fishway is on the left about a quarter of a mile down the road. Look for a cyclone fence and a brown sign with yellow lettering.
From Rt.20 East (traveling toward I-91), go past the exit for Bradley Airport and take the Hamilton exit. At the end of the exit ramp turn right. Turn right at the first intersection on to Rainbow Road. The fishway is on the left about a quarter of a mile down the road. Look for a cyclone fence and a brown sign with yellow lettering.