Pennsylvania Outdoor News Fishing & Hunting Report – March 15, 2019

Anglers are reminded that all stocked trout waters, except special regulation sections and those open to year-round fishing, are closed from March 1 until 8 a.m. on opening day of trout season, which is March 30 (regional) and April 13 (statewide). 

For a stocking schedule, visit www.fishandboat.com. 

Anglers are also reminded that walleye season is closed from March 15 to May 4, during which it is unlawful to target walleyes. 

NORTHWEST REGION

Presque Isle Bay (Erie County) — Misery Bay yielded numbers of small perch and crappies through mid-February. Large perch were hitting near the Yacht Club as of Feb. 20. Some 12- to 15-inch crappies also were reported. Purple pickworms were productive.  Water off parking lots #1 and #2 and Marina Lake was producing numbers of perch, and Horseshoe Pond was giving up the occasional northern pike.

Lake Erie tributaries — FishErie.com reported March 1 that most of the streams were locked up. In prior weeks, as conditions allowed, the tribs were yielding fresh-run steelhead. Elk Creek Sports Center reported steelhead, brown trout and suckers in Elk beginning in late morning on sunny days when slush ice was gone. Anglers are advised that steelhead smolts will be stocked in March and caution should be exercised when handling them as they represent the future fishery. 

Pymatuning Reservoir (Crawford County) — The lake was a mix of open water and porous ice in mid-February, putting the kibosh on most angling. Some small perch were reported off Tuttle Point, Snodgrass, and the Ohio Campground. The Shenango River below the dam was yielding walleyes through Feb. 20. 

Conneaut Lake (Crawford County) — Northern pike, perch and bluegills were reported through mid-February.

Woodcock Creek Lake (Crawford County) — Rainfall and thawing ice made the lake unfishable by mid-February, but the outflow below the dam was yielding walleyes.    

Canadohta Lake (Crawford County) — Crappies, northern pike, and walleyes were reported through mid-February, with the pike and walleyes hitting tip-ups with large shiners. 

Sugar Lake (Crawford County) — A few panfish, largemouth bass and chain pickerel were reported through mid-February.

Lake Wilhelm (Mercer County) — Through Feb. 19, anglers were catching nice numbers of perch and bluegills by the dam. One family caught a bounty of crappies, including several over 12 inches, during two days of angling with small jigs tipped with maggots and sonars.  

Lake Arthur (Butler County) — Ice fishermen were catching panfish, including yellow perch over weed beds and crappies over structure, on a variety of baits. 

Kinzua Reservoir (Warren County) — Some nice-sized yellow perch were hitting near Webbs Ferry Boat Launch through mid-February. Northern pike and walleyes were reported around the Willow Bay Boat Launch. 

Lake Chautauqua (New York)  FishErie.com reported March 1 that ice anglers were catching panfish mostly in 10 feet and walleyes in anywhere from 20 to 40 feet,

SOUTHWEST REGION

Highpoint Lake (Somerset County) — S & S Bait & Tackle reported March 2 that anglers fishing the tail end of ice season were catching nice northern pike, chain pickerel, crappies, and bass on large shiners, and yellow perch on small minnows. Shoreline ice was becoming shaky.

Youghiogheny River (Somerset County) — S & S Bait reported the tailrace was yielding trout to crawlers as of March 2.

NORTHCENTRAL REGION

Hills Creek Lake (Tioga County) — Don’s Tackle Shack reported Feb. 28 that ice anglers were making nice catches of bluegills, bass, crappies, and chain pickerel in the stumps end.  Shallower, weedy areas were yielding bass, bluegills, and pickerel, while crappies were a little deeper in six to eight feet. Perch were reported in various depths, with plastics in green, white, and glow effective colors. 

Beechwood Lake (Tioga County) — Don’s Tackle Shack on Feb. 28 reported nice catches of trout and panfish. Crappies were hitting minnows and waxworms and numbers of small perch. A few large bass and pickerel were reported on shiners. 

Foster Joseph Sayers Lake (Centre County) — A variety of panfish were being iced through late February, with the Hunter Run Cut area productive.

Spring Creek (Centre County) — Water was on the high side, but had nice color and was in the mid-40s through late February. Trout were hitting on nymphs such as peach/orange Mopflies, orange egg patterns, Squirmy Wormies (12), Walt’s Worms (12-16), and olive Scuds (14-18). Olive and black streamers (6-10) also were effective.

Fishing Creek (Clinton County) — Water was up, off-color and in the low 40s in late February and patient anglers were catching trout on weighted nymphs on the bottom. Productive nymphs included large golden Stoneflies, Pat’s Rubberlegs (8-12), Frenchies (14-18), flashback Pheasant Tails (14-18) and orange/peach Mopflies. Sculpins and other streamers, especially in black or olive (4-8), also were productive.

SOUTHCENTRAL REGION

Juniata River (Perry County) — Smallmouth bass were reported near Duncannon as conditions allowed in recent weeks.

Susquehanna River —Smallmouth bass were reported near the mouth of Sherman’s Creek as conditions allowed in recent weeks.  

Lakeside Quarry (Dauphin/Lebanon counties) — Snow and slushy conditions kept anglers off this fishery at the start of March. 

NORTHEAST REGION

Lake Wallenpaupack (Pike County) — Anglers were icing chain pickerel, bluegills, sunfish, and perch in late February. A few smallmouth bass were reported on tip-ups. 

Lake Minisink (Pike County) — Willie Marx’s Bait and Tackle reported March 3 that ice anglers were making nice catches of perch, crappies, and bluegills through late February.

Lake Shohola (Pike County) — Panfish and bass were reported through the ice as conditions allowed through late February. 

White Deer Lake (Pike County) — Panfish were reported through the ice as conditions allowed through late February.

Upper Promised Land lake (Pike County) — Numbers of chain pickerel were reported on medium shiners through the ice as conditions allowed through late February. 

Leaser Lake (Lehigh County) — Muskies up to 30-plus inches were hitting through the ice on big shiners on tipups as conditions allowed through late February. 

SOUTHEAST REGION

Delaware River  Brinkman’s Bait and Tackle reported March 2 that striped bass were showing up as far as Philadelphia, although most of the numbers were further south, and sizes were tending small – about 15 to 18 inches. Bloodworms were the ticket. Yellow perch also were hitting, on pieces of crawlers.

Schuylkill River  Walleyes were reported in decent numbers up to eight pounds, according to Brinkman’s Bait and Tackle March 2. Floating minnows or bait-tipped jigs and twister tails were productive. 

Sweet Arrow Lake (Schuylkill County) — Coble’s Bait Shop reported March 2 that although this fishery is open to angling in March, snowfall kept folks from fishing at the start of the month.

Monacacy Creek (Northampton County) —Brown trout were hitting on nymphs and streamers in the Trophy Trout section near Bridal Path Road in recent weeks.

Ontelaunee Reservoir (Berks County) — Willie Marx’s Bait & Tackle reported crappies, perch and bluegills were hitting through the ice in late February.

Blue Marsh Lake (Berks County) — Bluegills were hitting on jigs with minnows, and crappies, including slabs, were biting jigs through the end of February. Largemouth bass also were reported.

Tulpehocken Creek (Berks County) — Water was high but dropping and less than 40 degrees in the Delayed Harvest stretch as of March 1, according to TCO Fly Shop, which suggested dead drifting Caddis and Midge nymphs, swinging streamers, or slowly jigging deeper spots. Hatches included Midges in black and cream (18-24) and Sow Bugs (18-22). 

New Jersey — Brinkman’s reported that until the blackfish season closed Feb. 28, anglers were catching nice numbers in 100 to 120 feet, on deeper wrecks. The closed season runs until April 1. 

Compiled by Deborah Weisberg

Categories: Hunting News, News, Pennsylvania Fishing Reports

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