May 29, 2015

MDIFW Fishing Report

IFW Fishing Report For May 29, 2015

For current stocking information that is updated daily, please visit: http://www.maine.gov/ifw/fishing/reports/stocking/currentseason/currentstockingreport.pdf .

Region A – Sebago Lakes Region

On Little Sebago, anglers are enjoying the rebuilt launching facility there and enjoying some fine fishing for rainbow and brown trout, as well as smallmouth and largemouth bass.

The refurbished facility has a new dock system and toilet. It provides boaters with improved deep water access on little Sebago.

“Little Sebago attracts anglers seeking both trout and bass,” said Brautigam. “The launch is used from right after ice-out almost until it ices in again.”

With the weather warming up, area waters have been heating up as well, and bass are actively spawning.

“We were conducting our bass electrofishing surveys last week and bass are actively spawning. Water temperatures were in the mid- to high 50s last week. Smallmouth bass typically spawn when the water temps hit 50, and largemouths spawn in a little warmer water, around 55,” said Brautigam.

Auburn Lake continues to produce good action for salmon and some lake trout. Out on Sebago, it’s been a good spring if not a little inconsistent.

“It’s been hot and cold, but recently it has been very good,” said Brautigam.

Out on our smaller streams, water levels have been low, so in many streams, fish aren’t yet found throughout the waterway. “A little rain and the fish will be moving and will be found throughout the stream,” said Brautigam.

It is the time of year that water temps are rising, so once river flows increase, trout will start to move around looking for areas of cooler water. This can make it a productive time of year to fish.

Region B – Central and Midcoast Area

In central and coastal Maine, the bass fishing is heating up, with bass on or near nests in 3-5 feet of water.

“Males will guard the nest after spawning,” explains IFW fisheries biologist Jason Seiders. “Once you land the fish, it’s important to release the fish quickly as they prevent predators from eating eggs or the fry.”

If you like river fishing, the reports from portions of the Kennebec are glowing.

“In Madison, anglers are catching good numbers of brown trout, with many of these fish around 18 inches,” says Seiders.

However, it is the rainbows in the Bingham area that has people really talking.

“The fishing in Bingham has been exceptional,” said Seiders. “Anglers are catching some unusually large rainbows.”

Many of these rainbows are in the 20-24 inch range, but Seiders received on report of a rainbow at 28 inches.

“It’s really been a tremendous spring for catching large fish up there,” said Seiders.

Region C -- Downeast

Downeast, you can take your pick of bass, trout, salmon or togue.

“Bass fishing is just starting to come on with smallmouths and largemouths right near shore,” said IFW fisheries biologist Greg Burr, “Anglers are also catching good numbers of salmon and trout still.”

If you’re looking for salmon, Burr mentioned Branch Lake in Ellsworth, and Long Pond in Mount Desert Island as good choices, as well as Beech Hill Pond, Cathance Lake and Donnell Pond. Brown trout can be found in Walker Pond in Brooksville and Molasses Pond in Eastbrook. Tunk Lake is producing some nice salmon and togue, and West Grand is producing some big togue. West Musquash is another pond with good access with some nice salmon and wild togue. Some of the togue in West Musquash have tipped the scales at over 20 pounds.

“We have been emphasizing size quality in managing these fisheries, as well as provide for reasonable catch rates,” said Burr. “It seems to be working out well as anglers are catching fish.”

Brook trout fishing has also been good in a lot of very good small ponds in the region. “Now is a great time to get out and fish,” said Burr.

Region D – Rangeley Lakes

Up in the Rangeley Lakes region, anglers have been landing some big fish.

“One angler caught a four-and-a-half pound salmon on Rangeley Lake, and there have been several brook trout over three pounds caught on Mooselook,” said IFW fisheries biologist Liz Thorndike.

Rangeley usually offers the fastest fishing early in the spring, and then the other area lakes start to heat up. With water temps still in the low 50s, anglers are still catching fish on Rangeley as well as other locations too.

“We are surveying anglers on Aziscohos, and every boat we talk to has been producing fish,” said Thorndike, who added that Aziscohos is one of those waters that has a productive coldwater fishery that extends well into the summer.

Trout anglers who are looking for something a little different ought to try Jackson Pond in Concord. This small pond is off the main road, but just a short walk along the outlet to the pond. The pond was recently stocked with trout fry, but while there earlier this week, Thorndike noticed several nice rises from trout that had been stocked in past years.

“It’s a fly fishing only pond, and it’s a great size for fishing with a float tube,” said Thorndike.

If you are thinking about fishing in Porter and Clearwater Lakes, bring your lead core, as anglers are doing well getting deeper in the water column.

Region E – Moosehead Region

Up in the Moosehead region, last week’s weather was a real struggle between winter and summer. There was ice on the puddles on Saturday, but by Monday the heat was on. Unfortunately the wind kept many anglers on shore next to the fire for the first half of the holiday weekend before it died down for the rest of the weekend.

“We have received some good reports of fishing on Moosehead, primarily in the Rockwood area, as salmon and togue staged off the mouth of the Moose River during the smelt run,” said IFW fisheries biologist Tim Obrey. “We are also hearing accounts of flying ants in the stomachs of salmon and togue on Moosehead.”

With flying ants already hatching, usually caddis flies aren’t far behind. “Caddis flies usually make their first appearance of the summer in early June on our rivers and trout ponds,” said Obrey.

The stocking trucks have been out if full force the past several weeks in the area. Anglers can take advantage of the free fishing weekend coming up to hit a couple of the more accessible stocking sites. For the most up-to-date info check out the IFW website and hit the current stocking link (http://www.maine.gov/ifw/fishing/reports/stocking/currentseason/currentstockingreport.pdf).

“Gravel Pit Pond in Greenville is stocked several times in the spring and there should be plenty of fish this weekend,” said Obrey, “Also, Prong Pond, the Sebec River, Piscataquis River, and Drummond Pond are all good spots to fish in the Dover-Foxcroft to Greenville area.”

“If you’re in Jackman, head over to Big Wood Pond, Sandy Stream, or Heald Stream as they should be loaded with brook trout,” said Obrey, “These are all great places to take kids that want to catch a few fish for dinner...just don’t forget the bug dope!”

Region F – Penobscot Region

Are you in the Orono area this weekend and looking to go trout fishing? The department recently stocked 500 brook trout in the Stillwater River in Orono.

“We expect there to be a lot of angler interest in this fishery,” said IFW fisheries biologist Nels Kramer. In order gauge interest in the fishery, Kramer has set up voluntary angler boxes at the landing at the UMO steam plant and across the river at the Orono Land Trust Kiosk. “If you fish this area, please fill out a survey card and let us know how you did. The reports we get back help us better manage the fishery.”

If you’re not in Orono, don’t fret, there are plenty of other waters that are experiencing good to excellent salmon fishing according to Kramer, including Cold Stream Pond, West Lake, Duck Lake, East Grand Lake, Shin Ponds, Millinocket Lake and Schoodic Lake.

Brook trout fisherman will want to try Matagamon Lake, Scraggly Lake, and just about any pond throughout Baxter State Park. Looking to take the kids fishing and bring home some trout? There are numerous Kids Only Ponds in the Region, including Harris Pond in Milo, Edwards Pond in Lincoln, Pickerel Pond in T32 and many, many more. Don’t forget, it’s also Free Fishing Weekend!

Brook fishing has been just about perfect of late with moderate flows and cooler temperatures, however that will be changing fast this week with predicted temperatures in the 80’s.

Bass fishing should start to pick up soon especially on the Penobscot River. If you are fishing for bass on the Penobscot, please be on the lookout for northern pike. Workers at the Milford Dam reported a 29” pike in the fishway this past holiday weekend. Pike are invasive species in Maine, so we ask that if you encounter a pike in the Penobscot, please kill it immediately and call the Regional Office at 732-4131.

Region G – Aroostook Region

Now is the time to be fishing up in the county.

“The fishing is pretty good right now with near ideal conditions for lakes, ponds and rivers,” said IFW fisheries biologist Frank Frost. Fishing has been good throughout the region, and Memorial Day Weekend was busy, despite the Saturday morning snow that left 2-5 inches of the white stuff on the ground.

“All the district game wardens say that fish are being caught all over,” said Frost.

Of note was an 18 pound togue that was landed on Eagle Lake, which has been the largest fish of the spring.

Out on area rivers, conditions are about as good as it gets.

“The Aroostook is lower than normal, but very fishable,” said Frost. ”It’s near ideal temperature and flows.”

Other rivers that anglers may want to try include the Meduxnekeag in Houlton and the east branch of the Mattawamkeag in Smyrna.

If you are looking to take some family fishing this weekend, you may want to try Nickerson Lake in New Limerick, Spaulding Lake in Oakfield and Mantle Lake in Presque Isle. These lakes were stocked with brook trout by IFW, and offer anglers a good chance at bringing home some trout.

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