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Central New York Fishing Hotline

March 15 - March 22

For people visiting the hotline for the first time, and as a reminder to frequent visitors, the hotline is always done the week before. For example, it was done on March 14th this week. Information for the hotline is obtained by talking to employees at bait shops, searching fishing web pages, or directly from anglers. Ice thickness information is obtained the same way; we do not go out and check ice thickness. Remember ice thickness can vary greatly, even on the same water, so use extreme caution and your own good judgment if deciding to venture out. Some safety measures to follow are: use a spud and check ice thickness as you venture out, fish with a buddy, and bring a rope and ice-picks. For more information see the Introduction to ice fishing chapter in the I Fish NY beginners guide.

For those interested, there are also other fishing hotline/reports available for the region. A few of the web sites are: Wayne County Tourism, Visit Oswego County, and Oneida Lake Fishing Report (links leave DEC's website).

A reminder that from Nov 1 to May 1, all persons aboard a pleasure vessel less than 21 feet must wear a Personal Floatation Device (PFD) while underway. For more information on boating regulations please view the NYS Boater's Guide (link leaves DEC's website).

The New York State Freshwater Fishing Regulations Guide runs from April 1st to March 30th, so starting on April 1, 2019 the guide you want to be using is the 2019-20 Official guide which has a picture of a mother and daughter holding a nice steelhead on the cover. The Fishing Guide can be picked up where fishing licenses are sold, or viewed at Freshwater Fishing Regulations.

Region 7

Lake Ontario

State of Lake Ontario meeting will be taking place on Tuesday, March 19 at the Pulaski High School Auditorium. For more information please view the Lake Ontario meeting press release. The lake fishing report is done for the season.

Oswego River

The flow is up from last week and its running at 8,300 cubic feet per second (cfs) as of 3/14, but that will likely be changing with the warm weather and rain in the forecast. Anglers continue to get brown trout and steelhead. Just a reminder that walleye season runs through March 15th.

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 currently running at 750 cfs as of 3/14. Conditions have been challenging the last few weeks with the snow and cold but it looks like we will have a few nice days. Anglers are getting some steelhead with the mid-to-upper river producing the most action at this time.

There is a new water level flow page provided by Brookfield Renewable Energy for the Salmon River that can be found at the Brookfield Renewable website.

Oneida Lake

Just a reminder that walleye, pickerel and northern pike season runs through March 15th. Use caution when moving around on the lake as there are some big pressure cracks out there. With the rain/warm weather predicted the surface will likely be getting pretty slushy in the next few days. Also with the rain and snow melt use caution around areas where they may be flowing water. Anglers are still getting out pretty much all around the lake with 12 or more inches of ice being reported. Yellow perch fishing remains good with fish being found in 12 to 35 foot of water.

Sandy Pond

Anglers are getting out on the pond and are getting some yellow perch. As mentioned above for Oneida Lake, the surface will likely be getting slushy and use caution around areas of flowing water. Just a reminder that walleye and northern pike season runs through March 15th.

Otisco Lake

Just a reminder that walleye and tiger musky season runs through March 15th. Anglers are getting out on both the north end and also in front of the County Park. Use caution around the shore and areas of flowing water.

Cayuga Lake

With the milder conditions anglers should be able to get out in boats to fish for lake trout and salmon. Shore anglers are still getting lake trout around Taughanock.

Skaneateles Lake

An informational meeting on the Skaneateles Lake Fisheries will be held on March 20, at the Homer Intermediate School. For more information please view Skaneateles Lake press release.The DEC launch is closed for the season.

Owasco Lake

Just a reminder that walleye and northern pike season runs through March 15th.

Whitney Point Reservoir

Just a reminder that walleye season runs through March 15th. Anglers were getting out on the reservoir, but use caution as the rain and warm weather in the forecast will be increasing the flow into the reservoir and this may weaken the shore ice.

Chenango, Tioughnioga and Susquehanna Rivers

No new information. Just a reminder that walleye season runs through March 15th.

Eastern Region 8

Warm water (bass, pike, etc.) angler diary cooperators are needed for Seneca, Keuka, Canandaigua, Hemlock and Canadice Lakes. If interested please contact Region 8 Fisheries at fwfish8@dec.ny.gov or by calling 518-226-5343.

Lake Ontario

With the warm temperatures and rain in the forecast things should be opening back up so streams should be fishable again soon.

Sodus Bay

Like every where else, surface conditions will likely be getting sloppy with the warm weather/rain in the forecast. Yellow perch fishing continues to be good. Just a reminder that northern pike season runs through March 15th.

Seneca Lake

The Sampson State Park boat launch is closed as it will be worked on over the winter.

Canandaigua and Keuka Lakes

No new information. If anyone would like to contribute to the hotline or if they have a good recommendation for a contact (baitshop, etc.), please contact the Region 7 Fisheries office at (607) 753-3095 ext. 213, or on-line at fwfish7@dec.ny.gov.

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 fwfish7@dec.ny.gov.

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 fwfish8@dec.ny.gov.

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 fwfish7@dec.ny.gov. Good luck fishing.

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