LAKE ERIE AND TRIBS
Walleye anglers have seen a good walleye bite out of Barcelona since last weekend. Walleye have been running higher in the water column, which is common for this time of year out of Barcelona. Trolling in 55-70 feet of water with worm harnesses and stickbaits run around 30 feet down has worked well. Early this week, the walleye bite was hot, but then slowed down during the weekend as boats were returning to port with three walleye or less on average. Productive methods include trolling with worm harnesses and stickbaits just off the bottom, or slow trolling with electric motors 1 mph or less with a bottom bouncing rig and small worm harness.
There are still some channel catfish hanging around the lowest section of Cattaraugus Creek. Target catfish with nightcrawlers, raw shrimp, chicken livers, cut bait or dough balls fished on the bottom. Catches tend to be better at night.
Shore fishing has been relatively slow from sites along the City of Buffalo and Tonawanda. Live minnows and salted shiners have produced a modest mix of small yellow perch, rock bass and smallmouth bass. The shore fishing has been better in the early morning and late afternoon. Smallmouth bass fishing in the upper river is a better bet by boat. Try around Strawberry Island and along the southwest side of Grand Island for smallmouth bass. Watch your drift if fishing along the southwest side of Grand Island, as the international border (Canada) runs pretty close in that area.
There has been good smallmouth and largemouth bass action inside 10 feet of water in both the north and south end of Chautauqua Lake. Spinnerbaits, shallow diving stickbaits, tube jigs and other plastics have worked well. Now that the regular bass season is open, anglers can use live baits such as minnows and crayfish as well. Anglers are picking up some walleye along weed lines (8-10 feet of water) in the north basin by trolling with stickbaits and worm harnesses near dawn and dusk. Now is a good time to take a young or new angler fishing at Chautauqua Lake. Bass, sunfish and perch are all readily available from docks and shore.