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Central New York Fishing Hotline

September 23 - September 30

Tip of the week: In celebration of National Hunting and Fishing Weekend, there are some activities taking place this weekend in the area. On Saturday September 24, an open house is taking place at the DEC Salmon River Fish Hatchery in Altmar, NY from 9 AM to 4 PM. Honeywell's Sportsman's Days are taking place on Saturday September 24 and Sunday September 25 at Onondaga Counties Carpenters Brook Fish Hatchery, Elbridge, NY from 11 AM to 5 PM.

Fishing licenses are now good for 365 days; check to make sure your license is still valid before heading out on the water! April 1st was also the start of the new regulation guide, effective April 1, 2016 - March 31, 2017. You can obtain a copy from a licensing agent or it can be viewed online at Freshwater Fishing Guide.

A number of county web sites offer good information on fishing in the area, including bait shops, guides, etc. A few examples are: Onondaga County (; Oswego County (; and Wayne County ( Oswego and Wayne counties also have a weekly fishing hotline on their web page as well.

Region 7

Lake Ontario

Salmon fishing continues to be good with fish staging around river mouths. Look for fish in 60 to 90 foot of water with cut-bait, j-plugs, spoons and flasher and flies. Shades of green and white have been good colors.

Oswego River

The river is about the same as last week and is at 1,140 cubic feet per second (cfs), as of 9/23. A few salmon are starting to trickle in. Hopefully the cooler weather this weekend will help to cool the water down some, as it's still at 73 degrees F as of 9/23.

Remember, the bridge to Leto Island is closed, and there are mandatory personal flotation device (PFD) zones on the river. Visit Oswego County Tourism web site for more information on this and also for information on the life jacket loaner programs in the area.

Salmon River

The river is flowing at 335 cfs as of 9/23. Chinook salmon, along with a few coho's, are starting to trickle into the river and are now being found throughout the river; the most activity is still taking place in the lower river and estuary though. The Lower Fly section opened on September 15th. Pacific Salmon Fishing in Lake Ontario Tributaries

Oneida Lake

The cooler weather predicted next week will hopefully help to get the fall walleye bite going. For now though, look for walleye in 25 to 30 foot of water with blade baits. Bass fishing has also been challenging over the last few weeks. Young of the year gizzard shad are now large enough for bass to start feeding on them so there is plenty of food available between the shad and round gobies. Keep an eye out for surface feeding activity as bass push schools of shad to the surface. If you see some, cast into the area with topwater baits, lipless crankbaits, chatterbaits or swimbaits. It can provide some exciting fishing.

Cayuga Lake

Lake trout fishing continues to be good in 80 to 140 foot of water. Both trolling and vertical jigging are working for these fish. Some Atlantic salmon are being taken 40 to 50 feet down over the same depths. For largemouth bass look along the outside weed edges with plastics or crankbaits.

Skaneateles Lake

Trolling small spoons down 35 to 70 feet over 100 to 150 foot of water is producing some lake trout and rainbow trout. For smallmouth bass try drop-shot rigs, tubes or flukes from near shore out to 30 foot of water.

Owasco Lake

Trolling with spoons or flasher and flies 50 to 90 feet down over 120 to 150 foot of water, has been producing some lake trout and a few rainbows.

Otisco Lake

The lake level is way down, so be extra careful when boating. Tiger musky fishing continues to be good for anglers casting swimbaits, chatterbaits, swim jigs and spinnerbaits. Largemouth bass fishing as been a little harder over the last few weeks, but some are being taken in the north end and also along the causeway.

Sandy Pond

For largemouth bass try flipping or pitching bass jigs or plastics into the vegetation. Try weedless topwater baits over the vegetation.

Whitney Point Reservoir

For walleye, try trolling with worm harnesses or jigging with a bucktail jig tipped with nightcrawler in the old river channel. If anyone would like to contribute please use the fwfish7 email link below.

Chenango, Tioughnioga and Susquehanna Rivers

A word of caution for anglers headed to the Susquehanna River: with the current low water levels, launching and retrieving boats at many of the launch sites has been difficult, or impossible, at this time. Fishing with tube jigs in the deeper holes is producing some nice smallmouth bass with natural colors working best.

A number of muskies were tagged on the Chenango and Susquehanna with gray Floy tags (looks like a piece of spaghetti) placed by the dorsal fin. If you catch one of these tagged fish, please Do Not remove the tag if releasing the musky. Please, write down the tag number and report the tag number, date of catch, location, and length to 607-753-3095; or use the fwfish7 email link below. If keeping the musky please report the same information.

Eastern Region 8

Special Permit Allows Increased Fish Harvest at NYSDEC Avon Office Pond

Pond maintenance began May 2 at the DEC Region 8 headquarters. This work requires lowering the water level. Although steps will be taken to avoid fish mortality, fish kills are possible. To reduce potential fish kills, effective April 18, 2016, until further notice - Black bass, Yellow perch, Crappie, Sunfish, and Bullhead may be taken by rod and reel, for human consumption only, in any number and at any size from the DEC Region 8 Office Pond. A special permit is required to harvest fish in excess of the Statewide Regulations or during the closed season. Special permits are available at the DEC Region 8 front desk Mon-Fri, 8:30 AM - 4:45 PM. Permittees must have a valid fishing license or meet the requirements for not needing a license. Environmental Conservation Law (ECL) 11-0517(2) gives DEC authority to allow removal of fish by rod and reel from a water body when a loss of fish is anticipated.

Lake Ontario

Chinook salmon are being found in 100 foot of water, with a lot of fishing are being marked but they are being tight lipped at times. Cut-bait, spoons and flasher and flies have all been working depending in the day. keep searching looking for fish if not marking any on your electronics.

Sodus and Irondequoit Bays

Look for largemouth bass along the weed edges with plastics or crankbaits.

Seneca Lake

Lake trout are being taken by anglers trolling with flashers and flies, or spoons fished 75 feet down over 100 to 120 foot of water. If anyone would like to contribute please use the fwfish7 email link below.

Keuka Lake

Some lake trout are being taken by anglers jigging in 60 to 100 foot of water around the Bluff area. Trolling with spoons or flashers and flies 90 feet down over 135 foot of water has also been working. If anyone would like to contribute please use the fwfish7 email link below.

Canandaigua Lake

Rainbows are hitting on spoons fished 60 to 65 feet down over 75 to 95 foot of water. Lake trout are being caught at the same depths but 70 to 85 feet down. Spoons trolled at 2.1 to 2.5 mph has been working. If anyone would like to contribute please use the fwfish7 email link below.

Note: We are always looking for new participants in our Angler Diary Cooperator Program for our program on the Finger Lakes. Our numbers have dropped in recent years, and we need new cooperators now more than ever. If you fish Cayuga Lake, Owasco Lake, Skaneateles Lake, Otisco Lake or any of their tributaries and want to learn more about this program and how to sign up, please contact the Region 7 Fisheries office at (607) 753-3095 ext. 213, or on-line at If you fish Canadice Lake, Canandaigua Lake, Conesus Lake, Hemlock Lake, Honeoye Lake, Keuka Lake or Seneca Lake and want to learn more about this program and how to sign up, please contact the Region 8 Fisheries office at (585) 226-5343, or on-line at

If you would like to contribute to the fishing report, or need more fishing information, or have any fishing/fishing equipment related questions, you can contact Good luck fishing.

The fishing line can also be heard at (607) 753-1551.