ODNR Fishing Report for 03/24/2004: OH

Article Posted: March 23, 2004

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**As of March 1, 2004 the bag limit for walleye on Ohio waters of Lake Erie
and its tributaries is 3 fish.
On May 1 the bag limit will return to 6
walleye. A new 15" minimum size limit for walleye is in place for the
entire season. Single hook restrictions have also been extended to the
mouth of Maumee Bay and Sandusky Bay. See the 2004-2005 Ohio fishing
regulations brochure for a complete listing of all fishing regulations.
2004 licenses are required as of March 1.**

Anglers are fishing for walleye on the reef complex north of Camp Perry, the
Bass Islands area and around Marblehead. Water temperatures are in the mid
30's and water clarities range from less than one foot around Marblehead to
over two feet around the Islands and outside of the reef complex. Warming
weather and winds this week (3/22/04) should slowly increase surface
temperatures, but may decrease water clarity. ODNR walleye sampling on the
reefs produced many male walleye, but females do not appear to be on the
reefs yet. As the water warms expect more walleye to move into the reef
complex area. Popular spring techniques include jigging shallow reef areas
with shiner-tipped jigs or trolling crankbaits in open water surrounding the
reefs. When fishing the reef complex be aware that ODNR sampling will be
taking place throughout the spring. Nets are clearly marked with yellow
flags and floats. Please stay clear of areas with nets.

Rivers (report as of 3/22/2004)-

Maumee River - 37, water is clear, level is low. Water temperature
dropped over the weekend. Anglers are still taking some walleye using
floating jigs with chartreuse twister tails, hot pink or orange. The best
locations are Buttonwood to 475 Bridge & Blue Grass Island, but some fish
are being caught from Fort Meigs up to Jerome Road. Water temperatures
should start rising again by Wednesday. The forecast is to have air
temperatures in the 60's by the end of this week with some warm rain. That
combination will bring a lot more fish in the river by the week end.

Sandusky River - 37, water clarity is 6", the river is very low. Fishing
has slowed down a little with cooler water temperatures but should improve
this week at the temperature rises again. Try fishing with a slower
retrieve in colder water temperatures. Floating jigs 18" to 36" below oz.
weight is the best bait. The best locations are just South of the Hayes
Bridge and the area just South of State Street Bridge.


Steelhead:

This is peak time to fish the Lake Erie tributaries for steelhead. As of
3/23/04 some of the smaller creeks are fishable and the larger tributaries
could improve throughout the week. Spawn sacs, jigs tipped with maggots,
and flies are popular deep pool presentations. In shallower areas with
gravel substrate and high current sucker spawn or brightly colored streamers
work best.



Source: ODNR






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