Thursday, May 7, 2015

Wisconsin Outdoor Report

English: Smallmouth bass (Micropterus dolomieu...
Smallmouth bass 
Nice weather brings out good numbers of anglers for opening of inland fishing season
Some very nice weather brought out lots of anglers for the opening of Wisconsin's inland fishing season. In the north, walleye anglers found action to be generally good, with some decent catches of walleye in 12 to 18-inch size reported. Northern pike action was only fair, but some s surprisingly good bass action was reported, with smallmouth being a bit more active than largemouth. Panfish action was just starting to pick up, as crappie have started to move up into the shallow bays in pretty good numbers, and bluegill have also been moving up to the shallows in greater numbers.

Anglers continue to hook into nice trout on the Bois Brule with the warm weather bringing on insects hatches. Trout anglers also did well on some of the managed trout lakes and spring ponds, with most success for brook trout in the 8 to 10-inch size.

Fishing pressure was also heavy on Green Bay and Lake Michigan, where smallmouth bass fishing was good along Door County. Walleye anglers were also reporting some success in deeper water in the lower end of the bay.

Lake Michigan trollers were fishing primarily nearshore areas and have been catching a mix of browns and lake trout. Some trollers have begun targeting coho, with boats out early in the morning catching decent numbers. Anglers on the piers have reported catching browns, lake trout, and coho salmon on spoons. Steelhead fishing on tributaries has been tapering off.

Much needed rain fell this week, although it was not widespread across the state. Most of northern Wisconsin remains in elevated fire danger. In the past week, 88 wildfires burned 252 acres in DNR protection areas, destroying 19 buildings. Another 44 were threatened but saved with firefighter assistance. Burning permits are frequently suspended this time of year due to high fire danger. Check the day's burning restrictions every day you intend to burn online or by calling 1-888-WIS-BURN.

Spring turkey hunters have been doing well, with tom turkeys in the north still fairly active but becoming less active in the southern part of the state, with many hens now sitting on nests. Incubation takes about 28 days.

Other young animals, such as raccoons, squirrels, fox, coyote, and rabbits are also in their nests and dens. There have been reports of mallard ducks and Canada geese with broods and red crossbill and pine siskin have fledged young. If you see any young wildlife, please leave them alone and remember that young animals and birds are rarely abandoned but often left alone for periods by their parents. If you think they are in danger, contact the DNR Customer Service Hotline at 1-888-WDNRINFo.

Blackflies have hatched and ticks are also out in decent numbers. Be sure to check for embedded ticks after being afield. More mosquitos and lake flies are out now, but also some dragonflies.

Pasque flower is blooming in open prairies. Trilliums, trout lilies are in bloom, as well as wood and false rue anemones, dutchman's-breeches, marsh marigold, jack-in-the-pulpit, wood violet, and hepaticas. Cherry and plums are blooming. Wild asparagus is now up. The invasive garlic mustard is up and getting close to the bolting stage--keep an eye out for new infestations when you are walking in the woods.

The warm weather and rain also caused a dramatic flush in the color green...and reports of more little gray morels emerging.