Starting this spring, the DNR will be conducting angler surveys in various locations throughout the state. Angler participation in these survey efforts will be a key tool in proper fisheries management. All surveys have two options for participation, on-site postcards and online surveys.
SOUTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA
St. Joseph River: Water levels were still high and there is a lot of debris in the system. Water levels in the lower river are dropping, but were still less than a foot below flood stage at Niles and slightly above flood stage at Three Rivers. Steelhead are still in the river but water temperatures are expected to rise rapidly this week so the steelhead run will be winding down soon.
South Haven: Overall fishing was slow for boat and pier anglers. A few lake trout were caught by those trolling but no coho or brown trout.
Holland: Neither boat or pier anglers were catching fish. To find clean water, boats were heading out to water 75 feet or deeper.
Grand Haven: Pier anglers fishing spawn for steelhead and brown trout had no luck. Boats were trolling in 20 to 120 feet of water but no fish were caught. To find clean water, anglers had to go out to water 75 feet or deeper. There was one dock in at the Harbor Island boat launch.
Grand River at Lansing: High water levels have slowed catch rates but some were starting to catch panfish.
Jackson County: The inland lakes were starting to produce a few crappie.
Muskegon River: The walleye opener was good with some limit catches reported. The trout opener was also good. An 18 inch brook trout was caught and steelhead activity was good at Croton Dam.
Whitehall: Pier fishing for steelhead and brown trout has dropped off. A couple walleye were caught by pier anglers casting body baits. Limits of brown trout were caught three to four miles north of the channel in 12 feet of water when trolling green and purple spoons.
White Lake: Reported limit catches of pike in 10 to 14 feet of water.
NORTHWEST LOWER PENINSULA
Spring has finally arrived, and most of the lakes south of M-72 are ice free. The rest should be ice free by the weekend. The trout opener was OK for the most part. The large rivers were still high and muddy but the smaller creeks were fishable. There are still plenty of steelhead in all rivers.
Ludington: Those trolling body baits in the harbor and along the shoreline have caught a few lake trout and brown trout. Hot colors were black and gold or black and silver. Pier fishing was slow.
Pentwater: Had limited success for boat anglers catching crappie. They were still-fishing with minnows near Long Bridge.