Weekly Fishing Report
SALTWATER FISHING DAY – this Saturday
Join us on Saturday, August 10, 10:00 AM ‐ 2:00 PM at the Fort Trumbull State Park fishing pier in New London for our second annual Saltwater Fishing Day offered by DEEP’s No Child Left Inside® & Connecticut Aquatic Resources Education (CARE) programs. Activities include fishing, crabbing, and fun fish games. CARE instructors are ready to assist you. So come with a picnic lunch and meet us down at pier. The event is FREE, bait will be provided, you can even borrow our tackle or bring your own. No need to register just come out and have some fun!
LARGEMOUTH BASS fishing has been fair to good. Night fishing continues to produce, try black jitterbugs and surface poppers. Places to try include Quinebaug Pond, Candlewood Lake, Mashapaug Lake, East Twin Lake, Lake Saltonstall, Bantam Lake, Lake Wononskopomuc, Highland Lake, Rogers Lake, Gardner Lake, Pickerel Lake, Lake Hayward, Congamond Lakes, Middle Bolton Lake, Dog Pond, Crystal Lake, Ball Pond, Hatch Pond, Lake McDonough, Halls Pond, Lake Williams, Quinebaug River, Seymour Reservoir, Twin Brooks Park Pond, Park Pond, Burr Pond, Lower Bolton Lake, Lake Zoar, Stillwater Pond, Mudge Pond, Mansfield Hollow Reservoir, Pachaug Pond, Batterson Park Pond, South Spectacle, Bishop swamp, Red Cedar Lake, Winchester Lake, Black Pond (Woodstock), Quaddick Reservoir, Moodus Reservoir and Bashan Lake. Tournament angler reports are from Candlewood Lake (good, lunkers include 5.14 lb and 4.36 lb fish), Lake Zoar (fair, with a 5.74 lb lunker), Pachaug Pond (“good bite” for one day tournament, lots of limits, also lots of 10‐12 inch fish, with a 4.94 lb lunker, an evening tournament also found good fishing, with a 5.39 lb lunker), Quaddick Reservoir (very good morning bite, afternoon bite was off, a 5.44 lb lunker), Mansfield Hollow Reservoir (fair to good, with a 4.1 lb lunker) and Long Pond (tough morning, with only a 2.2 lb lunker).
SMALLMOUTH BASS action reported from Candlewood Lake, Squantz Pond, Bantam Lake, Colebrook Reservoir, Colebrook Reservoir, Highland Lake, Lake McDonough and Lake Zoar. River smallie fishing is very good along the upper Housatonic River, with some action also being found in the Naugatuck River, Quinebaug River, Farmington River (Tariffville area), Willimantic River and Coginchaug River. Tournament angler reports are from Candlewood Lake (seasonably good, with some surprising action up shallow, some smallies in the 3‐4 lb range), and Lake Zoar (fair action for smallies).
NORTHERN PIKE fishing is reported to be good at Bantam Lake, Lake Lillinonah, Hamilton Reservoir, Upper Housatonic River, Pachaug Pond and Winchester Lake.
Some CHAIN PICKEREL action reported from Lake Wononskopomuc, Amos Lake, Dog Pond and Bantam Lake.
WALLEYE are reported from Squantz Pond, Lake Saltonstall and Mashapaug Lake.
Excellent CALICO BASS action is reported in West Twin Lake, Bantam Lake, Park Pond, Highland Lake, Quinebaug Lake, Halls Pond, and West Thompson Reservoir.
CATFISH -Areas to try include Lake Wintergreen, Batterson Park Pond, Lakewood Lake, Pattaconk Lake, Black Pond (Middlefield) and Silver Lake (Meriden).
PANFISH ‐ This season has been very good. Now is the time to get the family out for some fast action. Target the shallows with bobbers and worms or grubs. Small spinners and jigs also work well. Local ponds are often great places, larger waters to try include Zeiner Pond, Winchester Lake, Bishop Pond, Quinebaug Lake, Schreeder Pond, Roseland Lake, Leonard Pond, State Line Pond, Griggs Pond, Peck Pond, Perry Pond, Park Pond, Norwich Pond, Morey Pond and Mono Pond.
CARP ‐ Areas to try include: Lake Saltonstall, Aspinook Lake, Beaver Park Lagoon, Keney Park Pond, Lake Wintergreen, Housatonic River, Lake Lillinonah, Hockanum River, Union Pond (Manchester), Lake Zoar, Rogers Lake and Squantz Pond. Sweet corn is producing well on ‘popup rigs’. ‘Swims’ pre‐baited with homemade ‘method’ are bringing them in. Don’t over bait an area as you fish it. Just enough to keep the fish interested is all you need. Come to SAXON Tackle’s carp fishing lecture at DEEP’s Hunting & Fishing Appreciation Day on September 28, 2013 at Sessions Woods WMA in Burlington, CT to learn more about carp fishing.
The river is at typical August levels, and remains comfortable for fishing and boating. LARGEMOUTH BASS are being caught in the river from Middletown to Haddam and in the coves and back areas all along the river (including good reports from Chapmans Pond). SMALLMOUTH BASS are being caught in the South Windsor/Enfield area on jigs, worms and on black caddis flies. Try wacky rigged Senko worms or throw a large Blue Dun wet fly. For their size some anglers consider them the toughest fighting fish in our summer waters. Target these aerial acrobats and be prepared for some great action. Tournament anglers found fair to good fishing for both largemouth and smallmouth, lunkers included 4.2 lb and 4.0 lb largemouths and a 3.65 smallie. CATFISH are being taken on cut bait and chicken liver. South of Hartford produced well last week with many fish being caught. A 15.56 lb cat won the recent “Whisker Round Up” catfish tournament. CARP fishing on homemade baits continues to be good for those willing to pre‐bait their ‘swims’ (fishing areas). Fish have been caught up and down the river.
Rivers & streams ‐ Conditions should be fair for summer trout fishing. The recent cooler, dryer weather is forecast to return for the latter half of the weekend and portions of next week. Flows in most areas remain comfortable for fishing and fish, but continue to drop, with some areas now below their typical summer levels (see box on page 4). Terrestrial fly patterns are very important this time of the year and anglers are advised to include them in their offerings. Good reports from the West Branch Farmington River, Housatonic River TMA, Naugatuck River, Eightmile River (East Haddam) and Hammonasset River.
Anglers are reminded that the thermal refuge areas on the Housatonic, Naugatuck and Shetucket Rivers are closed to fishing as of June 15. These areas will reopen on September 1. There is no fishing within 100 feet of the mouths of posted tributaries to these rivers.
Farmington River – Fishing continues to be good and conditions should be good through the weekend and next week. West Branch flows are clear and moderate (currently 294 cfs at Riverton with the Still River adding another 31 cfs). Morning water temperatures are in the low 60’s°F (and will rise through the day and as you move downstream).
Hatches/patterns include Ephemerella needhami (#22‐26, mid morning), Leadwing Coachman (Isonychia bicolor, #12‐14, fast water, evening), Blue Wing Olives (Drunella sps. #18 & Baetis sps.; #22‐24, mid‐late afternoon), Sulphurs duns (Epeorus vitreus, #16‐20), Cahill (Stenonema ithaca, #12‐14), Caddis (tan #16‐18, all day; green #16‐18, evening; summer pupa #18‐20 morning), Midges (#22‐28, morning), Black Ants (#14‐18, mid day in fast water), Black Beetles (#12‐16, mid day), Flying Ants (#18‐22, mid day, when windy/humid), Stone Hopper (#8‐12, mid day) and Golden Drake (Anthopotamus distinctus, #10‐14, late evening). Evening brings out a variety of every bug on the water.
Housatonic River – Good reports for trout this week. Water temperatures have improved, now in the mid to upper 60’s°F in the morning. Flows are now a bit below typical mid‐August levels, currently 250 cfs at Falls Village and 350 cfs at Gaylordsville. Early mornings and evenings are the best times for trout now.
Hatches/patterns. The White Fly (#12‐14, Ephoron leukon) hatch is in full swing right now. If you have never seen it you are in for a treat. This evening hatch gets going around 8:00 pm and must be seen to be believed. Snowing is the best single word to describe it. The feed frenzy that results is amazing. Additional hatches include Blue Wing Olive larvae (#18‐24, early morning; spinner fall in evening, mainly during overcast days), Light Cahill (#12‐14, evening), (Isonychia bicolor, #10‐12 has been active lately, fast water, evening) and Black caddis (#14‐18, early morning & evening).
Hatches/patterns. The White Fly (Ephoron leukon) hatch has not started yet (but is expected soon). Other hatches include Blue Wing Olive (#18‐22, early morning & cloudy days; spinner fall in evening), Leadwing Coachman (#10‐12 few evening), Light Cahill (#12‐14, evening), and assorted caddis (#14‐20, early morning & evening). Midges and stoneflies are located at the mouths of streams. Golden stonefly nymphs hatch at first light and adults egg‐lay after dark. Terrestrial season is here. Try Black/Cinnamon Ants (#14‐20, mid day in fast water), Black Beetles (#14‐18, mid day) and Flying Ants (#18‐22, mid day, when windy/humid). Don’t forget streamers (morning & evening). Patterns to try include White Zonkers, Wooly Buggers, Muddlers, Micky Finn, Grey or Black Ghosts (#4‐10). The Dobson Fly is active and anglers can use a black woolly bugger to mimic it.
Lakes & Ponds – Some lakes are still producing good trout fishing. Places to try include Beach Pond (target causeway), Colebrook Reservoir (6‐7 colors near the dam), Crystal Lake (target 20‐25 feet, at 1.9‐2.1 mph), West Hill Pond, Long Pond, Highland Lake, Coventry Lake (4 colors), Mashapaug Lake and East Twin Lake (4 colors).
TIPS & TRICKS – SLAB PANFISH
Gets the whole family outside to catch a lot of fish.
Fish tend to school near shorelines & shallow water.
Crappie, bluegill, pumpkinseed, green, redear are all different types of sunfish.
Catch some to eat or just relax & catch & release.
Bait drop shot rig is very effective.
Suspend bait at one level, twitch rod tip & lift to give it action, allow bait to return to original position.
Rig description follows:
Hook is tied to the main line about 1‐2 feet from the bottom of the line.
Weight is attached at the bottom.
Split shot may be simply crimped on, or a heavier weight may be tied on.
Keeps the bait ‘anchored’ to the bottom, while bait is above the weeds & debris.
Piece of nightcrawler, whole mealworm or waxworm works well.
Red worms are a popular choice.
Use 2 ‐ 3 small pieces of bait or one large piece of bait on a small hook works.
Try tiny plastic grubs & plastic baits or Berkely Power Bait plastic worms.
After casting near a possible location, lightly twitch rod with a long pause.
In murky water or low‐light conditions, start with rapid twitches, then slow twitches.
Bites should feel like little taps & tugs.
Panfish are a blast to catch with the drop shot rig.
ZEBRA MUSSELS REMINDER
Zebra mussels are now found in a number of locations scattered throughout the Housatonic River and its impoundments including Lake Lillinonah (since 2010), Lake Zoar (since 2010) and Lake Housatonic (since 2011).
Prior to their discovery in Lakes Lillinonah and Zoar in 2010, zebra mussels had been found (1998) in CT only in East Twin Lake and West Twin Lake (Salisbury). Anglers fishing in any of these waters and western Connecticut in general should use extra care to avoid transporting water, aquatic vegetation, and possibly zebra mussels to new locations. Information
For more information including precautions that should be taken to prevent the spread of zebra mussels to additional waters, visit http://www.ct.gov/deep/invasivespecies or the Aquatic Invasive species section of the 2013 CT angler’s Guide( www.ct.gov/deep/anglersguide).
NOTES & NOTICES:
BANTAM LAKE. The annual Waterski Exhibition will be held this upcoming weekend in North Bay on Friday, August 9 (5 pm to sunset), Saturday, August 10 (1:30 pm – 5 pm) and Sunday, August 11 (1:30 pm – 5 pm). Boaters should use caution in this area.
BATTERSON PARK POND. A waterski tournament will be conducted the week of August 13 through August 18 (Tuesday through Sunday) from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm each day. Although there will be some use of the state launch by event participants and organizers the state boat launch remains open and room will be available to the general public to park and launch. Boaters should however use additional caution on the lake near the waterski event area (northwest portion of lake near the Batterson Park dock and swim area).
COVENTRY LAKE. A Waterski Exhibition will be held Sunday, August 11 from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm in the areajust to the west (in front of) the state boat launch. The launch will remain open for use by the public and a lane will available to pass by the water ski area. Boaters should use caution in this area.
LAKE ZOAR. A water ski clinic for the disabled is scheduled for Saturday, August 10, in the upper end of Lake Zoar (approximately the upper first mile of the lake below the Shepaug Dam). This event 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.
MARINE FISHING REPORT
Surface water temperatures in Long Island Sound (LIS) continue to range from the high 60’s to the mid 70’s °F. Check out the following web sites for more detailed water temperatures and marine boating conditions:
BLUEFISH fishing remains good to excellent. Bluefish spots include the usual spots: the reefs off Watch Hill, Ram Island Reef in Fishers Island Sound, the Race, Pigeon Rip, Plum Gut, Bartlett Reef, Black Point, Long Sand Shoal, Sixmile Reef, Falkner Island area, New Haven Harbor, Charles Island area, Stratford Shoal/Middle Ground, Bridgeport Harbor, Penfield Reef, and around the Norwalk Islands. Snapper bluefish are in thick. Snapper fishing is in full swing and is a great opportunity to introduce kids to fishing!
STRIPED BASS fishing also remains very good especially at dawn. Striper spots include the Watch Hill reefs, Ram Island Reef in Fishers Island Sound, the Race, Sluiceway, Plum Gut, Bartlett Reef, Black Point, Hatchett Reef, Long Sand Shoal, Sixmile Reef, Cornfield Point, outer Southwest Reef, the reefs off Madison over to Branford, New Haven Harbor, Charles Island/Milford area, Stratford Shoal/Middle Ground, Bridgeport Harbor, Penfield Reef, and around the Norwalk Islands. Live‐lining bunker is the ticket for hooking up on a trophy size “cow” striper!
SUMMER FLOUNDER fishing is good with doormats in the 6‐9 lbs range being reported over the past week. Fluke spots include the south side of Fishers Island (Isabella Beach), off the Stonington breakwater, mouth of the Thames River over to Little Goshen Reef, Niantic Bay including Black Point, Sound View Beach, south side of Long Sand Shoal, Falkner Island area, New Haven Harbor and south of the breakwaters, and off the Norwalk Islands.
SCUP (porgy) fishing remains good on the major rocky reefs throughout LIS and shoreline areas with structure.
BLACK SEA BASS fishing is fair to good over rocky hard bottom in 90+ feet of water.
BLACKFISH fishing is fair to good on the major rocky reefs and outcrops.
HICKORY SHAD are in the lower Connecticut River and tributaries.
BLUE CRABBING remains strong in the tidal rivers and creeks.
For Current Connecticut Recreational Fishing Regulations: Anglers should consult the 2013 Connecticut Anglers Guide which is now available at most Town Clerks Offices, DEEP offices and at tackle stores selling fishing licenses. 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.