Hey gang, it is still cold out there but some fish are biting.
Early spring conditions continue on the local lakes. Early warming, protected bays with dark sand or rock bottoms, or areas with current continue to give up some fish, especially in the late afternoons during the warmer parts of the day. Windy conditions have limited the days and areas people are fishing some.
Crappies and Bluegills can get active in the usual early spots. Look for them in shallow, protected areas with a north bank. Dark bottom areas with green weeds are especially good right now, but sandy areas near reeds will also produce. Small minnows, tail hooked, and suspended under a bobber is the best way to catch crappies, but if the bite is tough, don't overlook waxworms on an icefishing jig or a small red #10 hook as an option for both species.
Bay 5, Stumpy and Icehouse Bays, The Crane's Nest and the Channel on Okauchee are always areas that turn on early, as are Garvin (North end) Kessus, Golden, Pine (Both Ends) Moose, Fowler, Lac Labelle and the boat channels on Nagawicka.
Walleyes continue to bite on the Rock River in Jefferson. The walleye spawning runs are done for the most part, but fish are still being taken from shellbeds, rockpiles and in the channel swings. Jig and minnow, or jig and plastics (including ringworms) have been the best baits this year. While the walleyes have done their ritual, whitebass fishing has not been happening the way we'd expect. If we get some warm stable weather, things should turn on quickly.
There are a fair number of people out making use of the new catch and release season for bass. Although I haven't heard anything consistent about smallmouth, anglers putting in the time are getting slow but steady largemouth action working shallow areas with green weeds (especially flats outside of spawning areas) or around wood laydowns. Jig and chunk, or flipping a beaver or creature can put some fish in the boat. If you're finding fish, a texas rigged lizard can really get them going early in the season. If you're chasing a big one right now, use the biggest shiners you can find under a slip bobber around the ends of major points.