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Fish Ohio Report, May 2, 2013

May 8, 2013

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Inland Lakes and Rivers

Article Photos

Rich Baker took three nice walleye (26-1/2' & two 25') from Middle Beaver Creek recently.


Kiser Lake (Champaign County) - Fish plastic baits and crankbaits for largemouth bass in and along lily pads on the south side of lake and near woody cover on the north shore. As the water warms, bluegill can be caught in shallow water areas using night crawlers or wax worms fished under a bobber. Fly fishing for bluegills using floating flies and spiders can also be very productive and exciting. Chicken livers fished on the lake bottom can reward an angler with channel catfish or hybrid striped bass. No motors are allowed on this lake.

O'Shaughnessy Reservoir (Delaware County) - Crappies are very active in the north end of the lake. Target submerged cover using minnows suspended under a bobber. Fish the shoreline cover throughout the lake with small worms and larval baits suspended beneath a bobber when seeking bluegills. Areas along the west shoreline that have fallen trees and brush piles are good places to fish for largemouth bass. Try a variety of creature baits, lizards, and tubes for best results. Channel catfish can be taken in the upper section of the reservoir. Use cut baits, shrimp, or night crawlers fished on the bottom. Crappies must be 9 inches or longer to keep.

Fact Box


Tappan Lake (Harrison County) - Both shore and boat anglers are sharing the same amount of success for catching crappies at Tappan Lake. With 2,100-plus acres of water, Tappan Lake has well over 32 miles of shoreline.


Upper Sandusky Reservoir #2 (Wyandot County) - Located on the southeast edge of Upper Sandusky on CR60, crappie should be biting at this 118 acre reservoir. Try fishing around standing timber and brush. Live minnows fished under a bobber usually produce the best; however, some anglers cast 1/8 ounce jigs with a twister tail tipped with a wax worm. There is a boat ramp and dock, but boats are restricted to electric motors only. The reservoir closes at 10 pm.

Sandusky River (Sandusky County) - The river level is somewhat high and the water clarity is poor. As water levels recede the bite should pick up, but we are probably near the end of the walleye run. White bass should be showing up in numbers soon. For walleye, most anglers use a floating jig head with a 1/4 to 1/2 ounce weight depending on the water current. For white bass, try using minnows fished under a bobber, or jigs with a white twister tail. Starting May 1, the daily bag limit for walleye is 6. Do NOT keep any walleye shorter than 15 inches. Please take a ruler with you.

Clear Fork Reservoir (Richland and Morrow Counties) - Located just 8 miles south of Mansfield along State Route 97, this 971-acre reservoir is well known for its muskellunge population. It is one of the 8 lakes stocked with muskellunge in Ohio. However, the reservoir has good populations of largemouth bass as well. Quite a few 5 pound largemouth have been caught recently. A boat ramp and marina are located on the south side of the reservoir east of Bowers Road. In addition, there are three picnic areas with access to the lake located along the south side of the reservoir. Shore fishing is only allowed along the south and west shorelines from the Orewiler Road bridge to a point 1000 feet upstream of the dam. There are no motor size restrictions, but an 8 mph speed limit is enforced by the city of Mansfield.


Tappan Lake (Harrison County) - Both shore and boat anglers are sharing the same amount of success for catching crappies at Tappan Lake. With 2,100-plus acres of water, Tappan Lake has well over 32 miles of shoreline. If you can find the fallen timber along the shoreline there is a good chance you will find crappie around and in that timber. Minnows fished 3-5 feet under bobbers have produced consistent crappie action with a bonus catfish here and there. Anglers specifically targeting catfish have also reported consistent action. Shad, chicken liver, and night crawlers on the bottom have all produced well.

Spencer Lake (Medina County) - If you don't mind taking the time to fillet smaller crappies, Spencer Lake can offer you coolers full of 6-9 inch crappies. Crappies are being caught all over the lake in large quantities. Crappie tubes and tinsel jigs are producing so well right now you can leave the minnow bucket at home. A couple fishing from a boat also reported a good evening's catch of largemouth bass with 2 of the 8 bass caught breaking the 3.5 pound mark. They reported catching them off of the stump field on the south side of the lake but their bait of choice will remain their secret.


Monroe Lake (Monroe County) - Productive areas for largemouth bass generally include the areas along submerged weed beds or woody cover. Try using shallow running crankbaits fished at a depth of 6 feet. Bluegill angling should be good this week as temperatures continue to warm. Anglers should seek out shallow areas in the upper end of the lake in hopes of catching some bluegills on spawning beds. Submerged structure maps of this lake can be obtained by contacting the District Four, Division of Wildlife office in Athens at (740) 589-9930.

Piedmont Lake (Belmont County) - Saugeye in the 20-25 inch range can be taken near the dam by shore and boat anglers. Best fishing is at dusk or dawn, or all day if there is cloud cover. Most fish can generally be caught on jigs and minnows fished 6-8 feet deep using a slip bobber. Fair numbers of nice black crappies in the 12-14 inch range can be caught in the same area with minnows fished 3-4 feet deep. A few largemouth bass from 12-19 inches have been caught on spinner baits fished slowly in shallow water.

Ross Lake (Ross County) - Several areas of submerged structure have enhanced this 143-acre lake. Try casting wax worms or night crawlers over some of this submerged structure for good catches of bluegill. Fishing for largemouth bass should be picking up. Try casting plastic worms and crank baits.


Caesar Creek Lake (Warren County) - Largemouth bass can be caught around shoreline cover and rip rap shorelines using crank baits, jigs, and soft plastic lures. Saugeyes are starting to bite in 6-12 feet of water. Try using jigs with twister tails or a plain jig tipped with a minnow. Some white bass are being caught in Anderson Fork. Use small spinners, white or chartreuse jigs for the white bass.

Grand Lake St. Marys (Auglaize and Mercer counties) - Bass should be biting. Try fishing along the shoreline in less than 3 feet of water using soft plastics, (pumpkinseed, watermelon) and white spinner baits. The bass are starting to spawn, so concentrate your efforts in the back of channels and bays where there is brush and rock. For pan fish, good numbers are being caught with cork and live bait. Try fishing 1-2 feet deep along any rocky or brushy channel. For catfish try using cut bait, raw shrimp, and night crawlers. Fishing tight-line is best.


Meldahl Dam Area (Clermont County) - Fishing for hybrid striped bass should prove successful this time of year in the tail water section. Try minnows, crankbaits, or twister tails. Catfish will also start biting on a variety of baits, including night crawlers and cut baits such as shad and skip jack. As the water temperature starts to increase, fishing for sauger and walleye may slow down, but both can still be caught on jigs with twister tails tipped with minnows. Water levels on the Ohio River are slightly high at this time. Anglers are encouraged to check water levels before deciding to fish.


Regulations to Remember:

On May 1 the daily bag limit increases to 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 through May 15. The daily bag limit increases to 5 from May 16 through August 31. The minimum size limit for trout and salmon is 12 inches.

The black bass (largemouth and smallmouth bass) daily bag limit is 5 fish per angler with a 14-inch minimum size limit through April 30. Black bass fishing is closed to possession (no harvest) from May 1 through June 28. On Saturday, June 29 the daily bag limit returns to 5 fish per angler with a 14-inch minimum size limit.

The best walleye fishing over the past week has been around the Camp Perry firing range and the Bass Islands. Trollers have caught fish around the outer cans of the Camp Perry firing range, west of the Bass Islands, and to a lesser extent around Kelleys Island. Crankbaits and worm harnesses have both caught fish. Fish have been caught by jigging nearshore west of the reefs and on the reefs within the Camp Perry firing range. Purple or green hair jigs have been the lure of choice for jiggers. Please use caution when boating in cold water.

The water temperature is 48 degrees off of Toledo and 44 degrees off of Cleveland according to the nearshore marine forecast.

Steelhead fishing reports

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



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