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Western New York Fishing Hotline

July 21 to July 28, 2017

Lake Ontario

Temperature profiles quickly returned to normal following last Friday's upwelling event. The excellent king salmon bite quickly returned as well, with good catches reported this week from the Niagara Bar to Oak Orchard. Fish are also spread over a wide depth range with mature king catches coming between 150 to 350 feet of water. Flasher-fly combos and meat rigs run 40-80 feet down have been productive, with green and white the most mentioned colors. Not much action on spoons. In addition to big king salmon, anglers are also catching shaker kings, coho salmon and steelhead. The State boat launch at Oak Orchard is now open. For those new to fishing Lake Ontario, visit the Trolling for Lake Ontario Trout and Salmon page for more information.

Lake Ontario Tributaries, Harbors & Piers

Harbors and pier sites are good spots to target a variety of warm water species. Yellow perch were biting well between the Wilson piers earlier this week.

Lower Niagara River

Smallmouth bass fishing has been fair on the lower river, with some white bass, sheepshead and the odd walleye mixed in. Boaters can target bass by drifting with bottom bouncing rigs with shiners, crayfish and plastics, or by casting towards shore with stickbaits, jerkbaits and spinners. The same baits and lures work for shore anglers as well. Walleye catch numbers typically pick up in late summer, so keep an eye out. The stairs into the gorge at Devils Hole State Park are closed for a replacement project until spring of 2018. For fishing access maps and lower river fishing information see the Fishing the Lower Niagara River page.

Cuba Lake

Walleye have been biting well along weedlines at Cuba Lake. An angler produced good catches by jigging with nightcrawlers.

Inland Trout Streams

Yesterday's rainstorms missed the southern tier counties, so those trout streams are in good fishing shape now. The larger streams in Erie and Wyoming Counties are currently a bit high, but dropping. The smaller streams in those counties are the better bet for tomorrow. No consistent fly hatches happening right now. Best bet is to try and match any observed bugs or tie on a dry terrestrial pattern or nymph. Productive offerings for spinning anglers include worms, salted minnows and small inline spinners. Western New York anglers have a variety of Wild Trout Streams and Stocked Trout Streams to choose from. In addition, Public Fishing Rights Maps are available for many of the region's best trout streams. Check out the Fishing For Stream Trout page for introductory information on trout baits, lures, equipment and fishing techniques.

Genesee River Angler Diary Program

DEC Region 9 Fisheries Unit will be running an angler diary program for the Genesee River during 2017, and is currently looking for anglers to keep diaries. The diarist program aims to record data for trout and bass fishing trips on the Genesee River from the Pennsylvania line downstream through Letchworth State Park from March 1st through October 31st, 2017. If you fish the Genesee River (even once) and would like to contribute your observations by keeping a diary, please call DEC Fisheries at (716) 379-6372 or email

If you need more fishing information or would like to contribute to the fishing report, please call or e-mail Mike Todd (716-851-7010; Good Luck Fishing!

The fishing hotline can also be heard at (716) 855-FISH.