Weekly Fishing Report: July 4, 2019

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Weekly Fishing Report - July 4, 2019

fishing map Southwest Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Southeast Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Northeast Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Northwest Lower Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report Upper Peninsula Weekly Fishing Report

Have a safe & happy 4th of July!

Anglers need to be aware of higher than normal water levels around the state. Caution needs to be used on the lakes which may have hidden hazards and the rivers due to strong currents and floating debris. We have gone from cold water temperatures to warm water with the heat wave. While bluegills were on the beds to the north, they were moving to deeper water in the southern sections of the state. Bass and walleye were also moving to deeper water. Those heading out on the rivers will definitely want to bring the bug spray!

All anglers 17 years of age and older are required to have a fishing license.

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Southeast Lower Peninsula

Lake Erie: The boat ramps have stayed above water this week. The walleye bite was decent in Brest Bay and off the Fermi stacks in 20 to 28 feet when trolling spoons, bandits and bottom bouncers. Fish were also caught near the E Buoy and straight out from Toledo Beach Marina in 14 to 20 feet. Morning and evening were best. White bass, channel cats and lots of freshwater drum were also caught. Those drifting a crawler harness caught a few perch but no limits. Good channel cat action in the Edison Hot Pond with shrimp and crawlers. Largemouth bass, pike, white bass and bluegill were caught in the canals off Bolles Harbor.

Detroit River: Walleye were caught by those trolling a crawler harness or hand-lining with stick baits. A few perch were caught around the Cross-Dike in the lower river.

Lake St. Clair: Mayflies are out but not in numbers typically seen in this area. This did not seem to influence the walleye bite as limit catches were taken near the mouth of the Middle and South Channels of the river. The shipping channel was another good area in 31 to 34 feet and the Dumping Grounds in 20 to 25 feet. The smallmouth action was best along the Metro Park where good size pike were also caught. Smallmouth were caught in Anchor Bay along the north end. The fish are starting to move out to deeper water. Muskie fishing on the south end was slow.

St. Clair River: Walleye anglers have done well in the Middle and South Channels with limit catches taken in just a few hours. The bite was best in the early morning before 8 a.m. Some nice yellow perch were also caught.

Lexington and Port Sanilac: A few perch are showing up in the weed beds south of the Lexington Harbor in 15 to 20 feet. Pier fishing was best in the evening with walleye and rock bass taken by those casting jigs with a mister twister, small spoons or minnows. At Port Sanilac, rock bass were hitting minnows in the afternoon and a couple walleye were caught at night when casting artificial baits north and south of the breakwalls. For trout and salmon, the action slowed as fish were found out deeper around the reefs.

Harbor Beach: Lake trout, steelhead and a couple salmon were caught north of the harbor in 90 to 120 feet. Try dodgers with spin-glo’s or spoons near the bottom. Green, yellow and orange were good colors. Bright colored spoons have also done well from top to bottom. Smallmouth bass, walleye and pike were caught by boat and shore anglers inside the harbor.

Port Austin: Walleye anglers picked up a few trolling crank baits a couple miles west of the harbor and around the lighthouse. Pier anglers caught smallmouth bass, bowfin and bullhead with minnows and crawlers.

Saginaw Bay: Is producing walleye. Fish were caught trolling crawlers and spoons at Sailboat Buoy’s A-F, trolling crawlers in 23 feet at the Spark Plug, 27 feet at Buoy #4, and in 10 feet off Finn Road. Those trolling crank baits in 17 to 20 feet caught fish three miles north of Spoils Island. A few yellow perch were also caught. Walleye were caught from Quanicassee all the way up to the Charity Islands and Oak Point. Fish were taken in 12 to 14 feet off Quanicassee, throughout the Slot off Sebewaing and up to North Island in 16 to 18 feet. Those working the edge of the Bar also caught walleye. Most were taken on a crawler harness however spoons and body baits were also producing. Pike, channel cats, white bass and freshwater drum were caught.

Saginaw River: Shore anglers at Smith Park in Essexville caught channel cats and freshwater drum on worms.

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Southwest Lower Peninsula

St. Joseph: Had very good perch fishing in 35 feet both north and south of the piers. Salmon fishing slowed but fish were found southwest of the piers in well past 100 feet. Pier anglers caught catfish and freshwater drum with a crawler on the bottom.

St. Joseph River: Several steelhead were seen at the Berrien Springs ladder.

South Haven: Had good perch fishing in 35 to 40 feet. Most of the bigger fish were caught south of the piers. Salmon fishing slowed with only a few caught on spin doctors and flies in 120 feet. Pier anglers caught lots of freshwater drum when casting spoons.

Holland: Even though coho have showed up in the area salmon fishing has slowed. Salmon were caught about 75 feet down in 100 to 140 feet.

Grand Haven: High water continues to cover the Harbor Island boat launch parking lot. Boat anglers caught a mix of trout and salmon 40 to 80 feet down in 90 to 160 feet with orange and blue spoons. Look for the temperature break to find the colder water. A couple salmon were taken on blue and green meat rigs. Lake trout were caught on the bottom with yellow and green spin-glo’s. Steelhead action on the piers slowed with the warmer weather but good numbers of channel cats and freshwater drum were caught on alewife.

Grand River at Grand Rapids: Water levels were still high making it difficult for anglers to launch boats. Shore anglers targeting catfish had a hard time trying to get to the areas where they usually fish. Walleye fishing was slow. A few smallmouth bass were caught.

Morrison Lake: Was producing several bluegill and crappie.

Sessions Lake: Anglers caught crappie, bluegill, largemouth bass and a few channel cats. Most were using live bait or plastics.

Muskegon: A mix of trout and salmon were caught 35 to 80 feet down in 90 to 160 feet with blue and green spoons. Lake trout were found near the bottom with yellow spin-glo’s. Pier anglers caught freshwater drum when casting spoons.

Muskegon Lake: Panfish including a few perch were caught on minnows and worms along the shoreline. Largemouth bass were in the shallows early and late and hitting on both live and artificial baits.

Muskegon River: Still had higher water levels. Those fly fishing for trout would do well with blue winged olives or a caddis fly. Smallmouth bass fishing has improved. The fish were feeding heavily on minnows or crayfish.

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Northeast Lower Peninsula

Cheboygan: Those targeting Atlantic salmon and lake trout caught a few off Lafayette Point on Bois Blanc Island.

Cheboygan River: Fishing slowed but walleye anglers drifting worms on a crawler harness caught a few between the walkover bridge and the DNR Field Office. Most were 15-20 inches. A couple smallmouth bass, rock bass and freshwater drum were caught throughout the river when drifting worms.

Rogers City: Lake trout are still the main catch. Once anglers find them, limit catches were taken when circling the area. They are still feeding heavily on gobies so fish the rocky bottom in 40 to 120 feet. Lake trout are hitting dodgers or cowbells with spin-glo’s and spoons. Chinook and Atlantic salmon along with steelhead were caught higher in the water column. Good colors were green, blue, orange and gold, silver or glow early and late.

Presque Isle: Lake trout are being taken on a regular basis in 65 to 130 feet. Run lines deeper with flashers or cowbells with spin-glo’s for lake trout. For salmon and steelhead, run spoons up higher. Hot colors were green, blue, silver, orange and silver, orange and gold or any other bright colors.

Long Lake: Anglers are catching few walleye. Try drifting crawlers or leeches in 12 to 15 feet on the east and west ends of the lake.

Alpena: Those trolling spoons and spin-glo’s with attractors caught lake trout in 80 to 120 feet between Thunder Bay Island and the Nordmeer Wreck. The fish were both suspended and on the bottom. The odd coho or pink salmon were caught on spoons behind copper, lead, or divers in the top 50 feet. A couple Atlantic salmon and steelhead were caught while feeding near the surface when trolling or casting body baits and spoons near bug slicks. The salmon are feeding on young alewife, invertebrates, smelt and gobies. Walleye were caught when trolling a crawler harness or body baits in 10 to 30 feet around the bay. The best bite was after dark. Mayfly hatches have occurred in the evenings.

Thunder Bay River: Those using crawlers and leeches caught walleye, channel cats, smallmouth bass, rock bass, freshwater drum and the odd yellow perch. Walleye and smallmouth bass were also taken on body baits. The best walleye and catfish bite came after dark.

Fletchers Pond: Had decent catches of bluegill, crappie and some largemouth bass.

Oscoda: Lake trout were caught by those trolling spoons and spin-glo’s with attractors in 70 to 120 feet around the shelf and from the river mouth north to Greenbush. Fish were also found as deep as 190 feet. Most were caught near the bottom, but a few were suspended. The occasional steelhead was caught on spoons in the top 30 feet while Chinook were taken on divers 50 to 60 feet down in 100 to 150 feet. Pier anglers caught smallmouth bass, freshwater drum, channel cats and rock bass when still fishing or drifting crawlers and leeches. Walleye were caught in the evening when casting deep diving crank baits.

Au Sable River: The dredging below US-23 has been completed. Walleye, channel cats, freshwater drum, smallmouth bass and rock bass were caught with crawlers and leeches in the holes below Foote Dam. Walleye were also caught by those trolling a crawler harness or body bait. Hex hatches are beginning and areas between Mio and Five Channels have begun experiencing hatches as well as (spinners) adult mayflies. In the evening, large brown trout will key in on Hex dun and Hex spinner dry flies on the surface.

Higgins Lake: Anglers are catching rock bass and a few smallmouth bass. Target the drop-offs. A few perch were caught in 30 to 40 feet, but most were small. For lake trout, anglers are trolling with downriggers or jigging in 80 to 120 feet.

Houghton Lake: Catch rates were a bit slow as water temperatures rise during the heat spell. Anglers will want to target the deeper water during the day or try fishing early morning and late evening.

Tawas: Lake trout, steelhead and walleye were caught on spoons in 60 to 70 feet out past Tawas Point. Walleye anglers fishing down towards the Charity Islands in 25 to 35 feet reported a few limit catches with crawlers or body baits. A few walleye, along with the incidental small perch, were caught inside the bay near Buoys 4 & 6. Shore anglers at the boating access site caught smallmouth bass and rock bass when casting. Pier fishing was slow.

Tawas River: Had anglers still-fishing or casting body baits and other lures for smallmouth bass and catfish but catch rates were slow.

Au Gres: Some limit catches of walleye were taken in 25 to 35 feet with a crawler harness, spoons or body baits. Pike, perch, catfish and freshwater drum were also caught. Limits of walleye were caught near the mouth of the Pine River in 15 to 30 feet with a flicker shad or hot-n-tot.

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Northwest Lower Peninsula

Overall: A mayfly hatch is happening on several area lakes so top water fishing at night was producing some good catches.

Wilderness State Park: A few anglers fishing Goose Bay caught smallmouth bass ranging 13 to 19 inches. Most were using tube baits however those using worms or casting spinners and crank baits also caught fish.

Harbor Springs: Lake trout were harder to find but a couple anglers had some luck north of Harbor Point. The fish were smaller just 20-25 inches and were 70 feet down. Bass were reported on the beds last week so try fishing the shoreline.

Petoskey: Had few boats out. One very small salmon about 15 inches was caught and released near Bay Harbor. Water levels on the Bear River were still high for this time of year. No one was fishing at the dam however down near the mouth at the Bobber Hole and D Pier anglers caught smallmouth bass, rock bass, catfish, bullhead, freshwater drum and even a couple undersize walleye. Most were using worms.

Charlevoix: A few lake trout were found 90 feet down near North Point. Cisco action in the channel was very slow as it appears to be winding down. Anglers may still find a couple in the early morning. Those trying for bass in the channel did not have much luck, but a lot of carp were seen swimming around.

Traverse City: A good number of bass were caught in the shallows of the East Bay however it did slow at times. The best action was on the south end from the State Park to Acme. A couple cisco were caught north of Deepwater Point, but the action was hit-or-miss. Most were in relatively shallow water. Plenty of smallmouth bass were caught at the dam and off the platforms out towards the mouth. Many were undersize and close 14 inches so bring a measuring tape. Try leeches, crawlers and soft plastics. Rock bass and freshwater drum were also caught. In the West Bay, bass were caught in the shallows around Lee Point, south of Bowers Harbor along the Peninsula, Omena Bay and off the pier in Northport. Cisco were found around the tip of Old Mission Peninsula in shallow waters. Fishing on the Boardman River was quite slow, but a few smallmouth and rock bass were caught at the mouth and dam. There are plenty of carp at the dam as well.

Frankfort: Anglers reported scattered catches of Chinook in 130 to 160 feet straight out and heading north to Platte Bay. Spoons, flies and meat rigs worked best. Lake trout were taken off the bottom with spin-glo’s in 80 to 100 feet in Platte Bay.

Onekama: Trout and salmon were caught straight out and along the outer edge of the “Barrel” when trolling green or blue spoons.

Portage Lake: Lake levels are very high, and some streets were underwater. The ongoing mayfly hatch has slowed fishing for bass, perch and other panfish. Some light catches were taken along the drop-offs and around the buoys. A few coho were caught by those trolling.

Lakes Cadillac & Mitchell: Were producing some nice bluegills. The bigger fish were hitting on flies, spiders and small poppers. Good size perch were caught on minnows or a crawler harness. Crappie were found deeper in 10 to 20 feet, but the bite was slow. Walleye were also deeper and were hitting a crawler harness or crank bait in seven to 14 feet along the drop-offs. A fair number of largemouth bass were caught in Mitchell.

Manistee: First the water was too cold but now it is too warm as surface water temperatures increased to 65 degrees. Catch rates slowed as the fish were scattered. A couple Chinook, steelhead and lake trout were caught 90 to 120 feet down in 120 to 150 feet on spoons and flies. Chinook and steelhead were found 80 to 200 feet down in 300 or more. Pier fishing picked up with steelhead caught on spawn, shrimp and alewife off the north pier.

Manistee River: Skamania were caught at Tippy Dam.

Ludington: Boat anglers found a few Chinook, steelhead and lake trout 80 to 140 feet down in 120 to 250 feet with spoons, flies and meat rigs. Fish were also found out deep in 300 feet or more. Pier fishing was slow.

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Upper Peninsula

Keweenaw Bay: Those heading out of Baraga found a few Chinook salmon when trolling. Brown trout and steelhead were caught but it was tough going.

Marquette: Fishing was hit-or-miss as some are catching fish while others had none. Salmon catches were low. A couple steelhead and coho were taken near the White Rocks and Granite Island. Some big fish were caught but the numbers are not there yet. Boats seem to be picking up bigger fish on high lines which could mean they are feeding on bugs right now. Stannard Rock has also been a tough. Boat anglers are marking lots of fish but caught few.

Chocolay River: Had few anglers but those out did catch brook trout, rainbow trout and small brown trout upstream of the 41 and 94 bridges.

Little Bay De Noc: Walleye catches were spotty. Those fishing off Garth Point caught undersize fish. A couple nice fish were caught on a crawler harness in 25 feet along the Black Bottom and off Breezy Point in eight to 16 feet. Perch fishing was fair to good mostly north of Kipling in five to 17 feet with minnows or crawlers. Smallmouth bass were caught in three to six feet along the weed line with plastics near Garth Point, the Day’s River and the Ford River. White bass and freshwater drum were caught at the head of the Bay.

Big Bay De Noc: Was producing some northern pike.

Manistique: Salmon anglers should be heading out this week as water temperatures warm up.

Manistique Lake: Walleye were caught in both Big and South Manistique Lake.

Manistique River: The lamprey weirs were removed from the lower dam and a gate was opened which is good news for shore anglers. Walleye and smallmouth bass will move in and should be accessible. Steelhead could also be back now that the flow is up. The river is full of alewife which is also a sign for salmon anglers.

Munising: Anglers reported slow fishing in general with very few salmon caught. The lake trout action was fair near Wood Island Reef and the White Rocks area northeast of Grand Island. Some boats heading out to Big Reef did manage a limit of lake trout however fishing was tough, and they did a lot of moving around on the reef. Most were using a combination of flies and spoons tipped with cut bait. Splake fishing was slow and most fish were undersize. Those targeting pike while casting jigs and stick baits in Murrays Bay had slow catch rates.

Grand Marais: Had good lake trout fishing near Five Mile Reef and Big Reef when trolling or jigging. Most were three to five pounds with a few over 10. Salmon fishing has slowed with very few fish reported. Pier fishing was slow.

St. Marys River: Anglers fishing north of the locks caught whitefish in 10 to 18 feet. South of the locks, a good number of walleye and smallmouth bass were caught. The whitefish are following the mayfly hatch as it continues north.

Detour: Atlantic salmon and steelhead are feeding on fly hatches. Try running lines 14 to 35 feet down in 60 to 90 feet between the red buoy on the Drummond Island side of the river to Lighthouse Reef. Best colors were a metallic green and orange, or spotted spoons in orange and chartreuse. For salmon, try 35 to 45 feet down in 80 to 90 feet.

Drummond Island: A cadis fly hatch is ongoing on the south side of the island. Walleye were caught throughout Scott Bay, at Rutland Island and Ashman Island when using planer boards and crank baits. Smallmouth bass were taken by those jigging orange and brown tube jigs off Bruce Pointe which is northwest of Scott Bay. Try jigs along the rocky points in four to six feet. A couple cisco were caught off the north end near Arrow Island and Howard Island with a tear drop jig tipped with a fly.

Cedarville and Hessel: For Cedarville, the public boat launch on Meridian Road is still closed however boats can launch at the Hessel Marina. Still no report on yellow perch in Cedarville Bay however anglers might want to try drift fishing or using a cadis fly to locate the perch. One mile east of the Cedarville launch, a few pike were caught near Island Number 8, off Hill Island Road. Good pike action at the Middle Entrance with creek chubs two feet off the bottom in 14 to 18 feet. Both largemouth and rock bass were caught in Flowers Bay with worms or casting spinners. For Hessel, a few perch were caught on shiners and worms from the finger docks at the marina. Smallmouth bass, rock bass and pumpkinseed can also be found. Good bass fishing in Mackinac Bay which is one mile east of the marina. Spinners and tube jigs did well in two to six feet. Try casting or jigging around Echo Island and Susan Island. Pike fishing was very good in the early morning until about 9am northwest of the marina in Mismer Bay with creek chubs, or casting spinners.

Carp River: Walleye were being caught on leeches.

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Fishing Tip: How to know if you've found an invasive species

An invasive species is one that is not native and whose introduction causes harm, or is likely to cause harm to Michigan’s economy, environment or human health.

Think you’ve found an invasive species? Familiarize yourself with potential invasive species threats to Michigan by visiting Michigan.gov/Invasives and click on the “Species Profiles & Reporting Information” box.

Once there you can search for species of plants, insects, diseases, mollusks, fish, mammals, birds or crustaceans and learn about Watch List versus Non-Watch List species. You can also learn how to identify invasive species and how to report it if you think you've found one. 

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This report is intended to give you an idea of what is going on around the state. Updates come from Fisheries staff and Conservation Officers. With more than 11,000 inland lakes, the Great Lakes and thousands of miles of rivers and streams, not all locations can be listed. However, it is safe to say if a species is being caught in some waters in the area, they are likely being caught in all waters in that section of the state that have that species