■ Maumee River: The fishing pressure is very low, with only a few diehard anglers searching for the last remnants of the white bass run. The fishermen working on catfish are doing well, with night crawlers, shrimp and crayfish fished on the bottom. Use heavy gear – there have been a few 25-pound flatheads taken recently, and a couple pushing 40 pounds.
■ Sandusky River: Catfish are the name of the game on the river right now, with anglers tight-lining a variety of baits along the bottom to hook up with big cats. Fishermen in waders that are not afraid to cover some ground have been locating some nice smallmouth bass while tossing spinners and tube baits on the edges of faster water.
■ Lake Erie: Dan Baker at Butch & Denny’s Bait Shop in Curtice reports that Sunday went into the books as one of the best walleye fishing days in recent memory, with a lot of 4 & 5 pound fish caught, and a per-fish average of about three pounds. Anglers were cleaning up while drifting or casting with bottom bouncers and worm harnesses in the area between A-can, West Sister Island and the gravel pit. Baker recommends trying different lures and patterns based on the water clarity, until you pick up fish. “When they turn on, they turn on,” he said. Perch fishing at this end of the lake has been best around Kelleys Island and northeast of Niagara Reef, using shiners fished near the bottom on spreaders.
■ Islands, bays: The smallmouth bass fishing remains strong around the Lake Erie Islands for anglers working tube jigs, crankbaits and jerkbaits in less than 25 feet of water, according to the ODNR. Largemouth bass are smacking crankbaits and jerkbaits in the harbors, marinas and shallow bays. Anglers are reminded that the bass season is closed through June 27 so all largemouth and smallmouth must be released immediately.
■ Grand Lake St. Marys: The ODNR recently stocked 100,000 yellow perch fingerlings in Ohio’s largest inland lake, and expects them to grow to keeper size in three years. The lake has received yellow perch stockings for three years, so some of the fish in the initial stocking effort should be approaching keeper size. More than 316,000 perch have been stocked here in the last three years in an effort to establish a naturally- reproducing population, and eliminate the need for future stockings.
■ Irish Hills: Angler Zak Decker reports that the bluegill fishing around the beds on area lakes has been good, using waxworms and panfish worms fished under a bobber with a tiny teardrop jig. Decker said that the bass in the lakes and ponds that dot the region have been in a very aggressive mode, eager to strike on tubes fished in the shallows.
■ Detroit River: The muskie bite is on, according to guide Spencer Berman, who said vertical jigging with the new Rippin Dawg from Muskie Innovations is doing the job. Berman landed a 53-inch river behemoth last weekend.
■ Lake St. Clair: Guide Spencer Berman said the muskies in Anchor Bay are active and casters using JR Double Cowgirls are hooking up with big fish. On the bass fishing side, Berman reports that tubes and drop-shot rigs are producing good numbers of fish, from along the mile roads on the west shore to the river.
■ Saginaw Bay: Jann’s Netcraft reports that the strong comeback of the bay walleye fishery continues. Walleye spawn in the tributaries along the bay, and then chase schools of baitfish as they migrate towards cooler water in Lake Huron. Big pods of feeding walleyes can be located in sixto- 35 feet of water along the shorelines.
■ Adrian Fishing Team: The newest varsity team at Adrian College – the bass fishing team -- placed third in its competitive debut recently at Gull Lake, in Kalamazoo and Barry counties. The Michigan College Bass Circuit event was won by Michigan State, with Western Michigan second, and the Adrian team of Brandon Bissel and Jacob Bayer taking third with a catch that totaled 16.67 pounds. Thirty-four anglers from eight Michigan colleges and universities took part in the event, the first of five tournaments on the schedule.