Connecticut Fishing Report- March 16, 2023

Holdover striper fishing slowed down after the recent storm, but largemouth bass, yellow perch and trout are biting well in open water.

Connecticut Fishing Report

Matt, at Black Hall Outfitters in Westbrook saw more rain than snow this week, and took advantage of the local lakes and ponds that weren’t as affected by the rain. He did very well slow rolling small keitech swim baits along the bottom on quarter ounce ball head jigs. In depths from roughly 15-25-feet he was able to land a bunch of fat yellow perch and about a dozen largemouth. Black and blue colors seemed to be working well for the jigs, while bluegill and baby bass patterns are said to be working well for anglers running crankbaits. The flow rates were obviously quite high after the weekend, but they should be down to reasonable levels by the weekend. Before the rain Matt was still managing some nice salmon and trout on the centerpin, and that bite should fire right back up when we get some slower, clearer flows.

Matt Stone caught this fat yellow perch (among others) with a few bonus largemouth bass during the storm earlier this week. (@sunrisekayakfishing)

Heather from Black Hawk Sportfishing is looking forward to the upcoming fishing season, and is also looking forward to their upcoming show at Mohegan Sun this weekend. Stop by and say hello! They will also continue to do Talkin’ Tackle seminars on Thursday evenings, so be sure to check in. 

Dan, at Dan’s Bait, Tackle and Charters in New London told me that things were going strong for local anglers working the trout streams before the rain, and that should be the case as flows and conditions settle this weekend. The trout stocking has continued in many of the lakes and ponds across the state, and that is drawing the interest of many local anglers. Along with the recently stocked ponds; the Farmington, Salmon, and Pequabuck Rivers are said to be fishing well. Many of the local lakes and ponds are also garnering interest from largemouth bass anglers, as that bite seems to be slowly improving as well. The holdover action was improving before the rain, and will likely get going again when the water cleans up and we get a few warm days in a row. 

Bobby J’s Bait and Tackle in Milford said that the holdover striped bass activity remained consistent on the Housatonic this week, with the increased flow starting to help things out, as the rivers starting to clean up. The better fish are still coming after dark and are starting to favor some larger baits. There haven’t been any reports of herring just yet, but they should be close, and that will greatly improve the bass activity. Trout anglers are taking advantage of the increased open season, with strong reports from most of the TMAs and the stocked ponds. A few broodstock salmon are still showing up in the Naugatuck for those that are still targeting them. 

Fisherman’s World in Norwalk reports that the trout fishing remained steady before the rain and is starting to pick up once again with the flows clearing up. The Mianus, Saugatuck, and Mill Rivers continue to fish well, along with just about any other body of water that was stocked recently. You can see the latest stocking information via the CT DEEP website or Facebook page. Bass action in the Housatonic is steadily improving, with the increased flow helping things out as the water starts to clear. Three- to nine-inch soft plastics on light jigheads have been getting the job done, and large swimming plugs have started to induce strikes from some larger bass, as the herring are likely starting to trickle in.

Connecticut Fishing Forecast

Our neighbors to the north got a reminder that the winter may not be over just yet, but across Southern New England most of the fishing has gone into high water/early spring mode. 

Connecticut anglers continue to see improved holdover striped bass fishing as the flows are up, but the water is starting to clean.  It seems that some of the bigger fish are starting to wake up and move around, with increased reports of fish to 40-inches showing up after dark. The early run of river herring tends to show up sometime in March, and we may start to see some early arrivals after the next warm spell! The state is essentially opened for trout year-round, and while some areas may be catch and release, all of the TMAs are fishing well. The DEEP also did a big round of stocking over the past two weeks, so give their website a look for more stocking information. Pike fishing should improve soon, as the fish start to put the pre-spawn food bag on, and there are still ample open water opportunities for bass and panfish across the state.

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