LAKE ERIE AND OTHER OHIO WATERWAYS NOTED AS 2007'S BEST SPOTS FOR REELING IN TROPHY-SIZED FISH
Columbus, OH - Lake Erie and a dozen inland lakes were among the best places to reel in "Fish Ohio" catches during 2007, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife. The "Fish Ohio" program recognizes noteworthy catches among 19 fish species.
With 2.25 million Lake Erie water acres, 451 miles of the Ohio River, 40,000 miles of streams, some 200 inland lakes and thousands of private ponds, Ohio anglers have great opportunities to catch fish that qualify for the "Fish Ohio" recognition program. Among the state's best "Fish Ohio" waters in 2007 were:
LAKE ERIE: Top spot for walleye, yellow perch and smallmouth bass
Trophy walleye received the highest number of entries with more than 2,300. Lake Erie was the top place to catch them, followed by the Maumee and Sandusky rivers. Catches of yellow perch were the third most caught fish at the lake with more than 1,000 entries. Mogadore Reservoir in Portage County and Indian Lake in Logan County followed in the yellow perch take. Lake Erie is also the top lake for smallmouth bass, followed by Big Darby Creek, Ohio River, Alum Creek Lake in Delaware County, Piedmont Lake in Belmont County, and the Grand River.
INLAND LAKES: Home of trophy saugeye and muskie
Indian Lake led the list for trophy saugeye catches followed by Big Walnut Creek, Buckeye Lake in Fairfield, Perry, and Licking counties, Tappan Lake in Harrison County, and Atwood Lake in Tuscarawas County. The number one "Fish Ohio" lake for "muskie" catches was Leesville Lake in Carroll County, followed by West Branch Reservoir in Portage County, Clear Fork Reservoir in Richland County, and Piedmont Lake in Tuscarawas County.
PRIVATE PONDS: Best places for crappie, channel cat and largemouth bass
While a majority of entries for sunfish, crappies, channel catfish, and largemouth bass were caught in private ponds, these species also were plentiful in many public waterways. Mosquito Lake in Trumbull County led the "Fish Ohio" entries in the crappie category with Pymatuning Lake in Ashtabula County, Indian Lake, West Branch Reservoir, and Mogadore Reservoir completing the list.
Lake Erie topped the list for qualifying catches of channel catfish in a public waterway. Hoover Reservoir in Delaware and Franklin counties, the Ohio and Maumee rivers also proved to be hot spots for channel catfish action. The top "Fish Ohio" area for largemouth bass was Portage Lakes in Summit County. Nimisila Reservoir in Summit County, Mogadore Reservoir, and the ponds on AEP's ReCreations Lands also noted trophy catches of largemouth.
During 2004, the "Fish Ohio" program recognized 12,947 anglers from Ohio and 40 other states for trophy catches. Each angler with a qualifying "Fish Ohio" catch receives a certificate and lapel pin. The 2007 pin featured a largemouth bass; the 2008 pin will display a sauger. Since 1976, more than 400,000 anglers have been recognized for "Fish Ohio" catches.
Individuals who catch four "Fish Ohio" fish in a single year qualify as Master Anglers. The Master Angler pin is similar to the "Fish Ohio" pin, except it is gold in color.
Anyone interested in submitting an entry in the "Fish Ohio" program should complete the online registration, available at www.fishohio.org.