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Fish Ohio Report, Oct. 10, 2012

October 10, 2012

Provided by ODNR


Delaware (Delaware County) - Crappies are active again in this lake north of Columbus. Minnows or jigs fished under a bobber around woody cover can put these active fish in the boat. Crappie must be 9 inches or longer to keep. Largemouth bass are being caught around woody cover and in areas of high gizzard shad concentrations. A large population of channel catfish can be caught on shrimp, prepared baits, and chicken livers, try the north end.

Madison (Madison County) - Crappies are the target fish in this 104-acre lake west of Columbus. Use minnows and a bobber around woody cover especially in the northern half of the lake to catch fish over 9 inches and up to 13 inches long. Catfish are also being caught on shrimp, night crawlers and chicken livers. Electric motor only.


Paulding Reservoir (Paulding County) - This 67 acre reservoir is located at Reservoir Park in the village of Paulding. It provides good opportunities for anglers pursuing bluegills this time of year. Try using night crawlers or wax worms on slip bobbers set to 5 to 6 feet deep during the mornings and evenings. Fish are being caught reservoir wide. Only boats 16 feet or less may be used. Electric motors may be used, but no gasoline engines are allowed. A $2 lifetime "boat license" is required from the Village of Paulding.

Fact Box


Ohio River Tail Waters - Anglers continue to have success for white bass and hybrid striped bass using twister tails, cast spoons, and live skipjack.

Killdeer Plains Reservoir (Wyandot County) - Located 10 miles southwest of Upper Sandusky along State Route 67, Killdeer Reservoir features a new floating boat ramp and 241 acres of fishable water. Smallmouth bass should be biting this month. Overcast mornings usually produce the best results right now. Try fishing the rocks along the island and the south shore, as well as the reefs. Cast the shoreline using crayfish, crankbaits, or soft baits. There is a 10 horsepower limit on the reservoir.

Defiance Reservoir (Defiance County) - Defiance Reservoir is located at the intersection of Canal Road and Kibble Road, on the west side of Defiance. A boat ramp is located on the northwest corner of the reservoir. Only electric motors are allowed. This reservoir was constructed in 2007, and stocked in 2008 with yellow perch, walleye, saugeye, bluegill, largemouth bass, and channel catfish. This month the yellow perch have been biting. Try fishing with minnows or red worms just off the bottom. Anglers have been catching fish measuring 8 to 11 inches from shore, as well as from boats.


Lake Erie Tributaries - The fall steelheader's rain dance has finally paid off bringing some rain and high water this weekend. The flashes of fly rods and noodle rods around an evening fire with chants of "here fishy, fishy" must have been what it took to spurt the cherished rain needed to start the steelhead run. The rain and high water was short-lived so focus fishing efforts closer to the mouths and downstream/river stretches. Steelheads are piling up in these areas in the deeper holes. Detailed information on where and how to fish for steelhead can be found at

Berlin Lake (Stark, Portage, and Mahoning Counties) - All "eyes" are on Berlin Lake right now. Despite low water conditions the walleye fishing has been pretty good as of late. Anglers are reporting half day trips resulting in limits of walleyes being caught. Most reports of limits are coming from anglers fishing from boats, trolling flicker shad. Other anglers are having luck casting and vertical jigging Vib-Es and Cicadas.


Dillon Lake (Muskingum County) - Throughout the year, the tail water of this 1.376 acre lake produces excellent fishing opportunities. Anglers can enjoy fishing for largemouth bass with spinner baits, twister tails, and shallow-diving crankbaits. Crappie anglers should try drift fishing with minnows, especially in areas with fallen and submerged trees. For bluegill anglers, a simple wax worm suspended under a bobber should be sufficient. If you're looking to catch a catfish, try suckers, small bluegills, and worms, especially in times when the river is on the rise.

Jackson Lake (Jackson County) - Check out the old boathouse parking area, as well as the upper shelter house fishing area for great catfishing opportunities. Catfish can normally be caught on chicken livers and night crawlers while fishing from shore. The cooler temperatures will start moving the largemouth bass back into shallower water, and fishing success should start to pick up as bass prepare for winter. Spinner baits, rubber worms, crankbaits, and jig-and-pig combinations can all work well.

Forked Run Lake (Meigs County) - Anglers fishing for bluegill had excellent success over the weekend fishing below the spillway. Bluegill up to 7 12 inches were reeled in while fishing wax worms or meal worms under a bobber.


Great Miami River (Miami, Montgomery, and Warren counties) - Smallmouth bass fishing can be excellent as the water cools and river conditions remain clear and stable. Look for areas with water deeper than 4 feet around bridge pilings, submerged logs, and undercut banks. Try drifting a live night crawler or minnow fished under a bobber. Plastic crayfish or crankbaits in crawdad patterns are also effective.

Rocky Fork Lake (Highland County) - Saugeyes are being taken in 8 to15-foot depths near the islands and along main lake points. Try trolling silver- colored crankbaits so that the lure occasionally bumps bottom. Largemouth bass can be found along rocky shorelines and near fallen trees. Cast jigs, rubber worms, and crank baits for bass.


Ohio River Tail Waters - Anglers continue to have success for white bass and hybrid striped bass using twister tails, cast spoons, and live skipjack. Popular colors include white and yellow. Catfish angling has been consistent using live skipjack. Anglers have also reported a few catches of sauger and fishing should continue to pick up as water temperatures continue to drop.

Regulations to Remember:

The daily bag limit for walleye on Ohio waters of Lake Erie is 6 fish per angler. The minimum size limit for walleye is 15 inches.

The daily bag limit for yellow perch is 30 fish per angler on all Ohio waters of Lake Erie.

The trout and salmon daily bag limit is 2 fish per angler from September 1 through May 15. The minimum size limit for trout and salmon is 12 inches.

The black bass (largemouth and smallmouth bass) daily bag limit of 5 fish and a 14-inch minimum size limit.

Western Basin

Walleye: There have been very few reports over the past week. As temperatures drop walleye will return to the islands area. Most walleye are caught in the fall by trolling crankbaits off of planer boards.

Yellow perch fishing has been good when the weather has allowed. The best spots have been 2 to 3 miles off Little Cedar Point, N and W of West Sister Island, N of "B" can of the Camp Perry firing range, W of Green Island, S of Rattlesnake Island, N of North Bass Island, the green buoy W of Catawba, and between Kelleys Island and Marblehead. Perch spreaders with shiners fished near the bottom produce the most fish.

Central Basin

Walleye have been caught on the sandbar between Vermilion and Lorain and around the Huron dumping grounds. Not many reports are coming in from the Ashtabula-Conneaut area. Look for walleye in 64' of water 8.5 miles out N of Conneaut. Trollers are using dipsy and jet divers, or inline weights, with worm harnesses. Walleye are also being caught with crankbaits off of planer boards.

Yellow perch fishing has been good 10 miles N of Vermilion, off the Vermilion break wall, and off of Cranberry Creek. Farther east fishing continues to be excellent with many limit catches. The best locations to fish are in 38' of water N of Gordon Park, in 35' of water NW of Wildwood State Park, in 49-50' of water NW of Fairport Harbor, and in in 56-66' of water NE of Conneaut. Perch spreaders with shiners fished near the bottom produce the most fish. The best shore fishing spots to try are the Cleveland Piers and at Headlands Beach Pier in Mentor and the Fairport Harbor Pier. Fair catches were reported this past week at Headlands Beach Pier and the Fairport Harbor Pier. Anglers are using crappie rigs and spreaders with shiners and the mornings and evenings have been best.

White bass has been spotty but can pick up at any time. Try near shore in 10-25' of water N of Cleveland Harbor, NE of Gordon Park (Bratenahl), and in 10-20' of water N of Eastlake CEI. Look for gulls feeding on schools of shiners at the surface. The white bass will be below the shiners. Shore anglers are catching white bass off the Eastlake CEI break wall. Anglers are using agitators with jigs tipped with twister tails or using small spoons.

Steelhead trout anglers are catching fish off the Fairport Pier at the mouth of the Grand River and also in the river up to Mason's landing at Vrooman Rd. Try using small spoons, spinner baits, and jigs with maggots.

The water temperature is 55 degrees off of Toledo and 63 degrees off of Cleveland according to the nearshore marine forecast.

Anglers are encouraged to always wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved personal flotation device while boating.



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