Mid-August, warmer than usual and not a lot of change on the fishing front in the Lakeland area.
Water temps have been rising due to heat, Bass action and Bluegill activity is up. Musky, Pike action is timing. Crappies and Perch catches flat. Walleyes??
Smallmouth Bass: Very Good – #’s and size as heat bringing up great action over Sandgrass flats and some gravel humps. Drop-shotting crayfish imitations, tubes creature baits and minnow imitations best. Some hawgs this week in 19-21” range, feeding heavily on softshells!
Largemouth Bass: Very Good – Wacky worming can’t be beat! Spinnerbaits, chatters and some hot top-water towards evening and early morning producing. Frogs, Jitterbugs, Whopper Ploppers – fun fishing.
Bluegill: Very Good – Small-medium leeches (if you can find any), worms and thunderbugs. Poppers and wet flys behind clear floats during evenings.
Northern Pike: Good – Cloud cover or wind (haven’t had much of either) have helped anglers casting spinnerbaits (Boonies, BOOYAH) over cabbage flats in 6-10’.
Crappie: Fair – Some nice slabs over deep wood, but numbers lacking.
Musky: Fair – Fast moving bucktails, spinnerbaits and top-water baits. Evening and early morning-flat, clear, days been tough.
Yellow Perch: Fair – Few reports. Softshells over Sandgrass flats best.
Walleye: Poor-Fair – Not great conditions. A few fish here and there on crawlers, leeches (where available).
Been a tough season for wild bait. Redtails have been scarce, also black chubs, mud minnows, dace, wild suckers – late snow in April put a hurt on a lot of our smaller, bait supplying waters. Now leeches are coming off the menu early as supplies are drying up. Good time to try some artificials for those of us so used to live bait.