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Bass Fishing Forecasts

Top Places for Bass Fishing in Ohio

by Dan Armitage   |  April 4th, 2014 0

Anglers who are bass fishing in Ohio are lucky to have several resources to reference when seeking places to pursue largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass here in the Buckeye State. The Ohio Division of Wildlife (ODOW) fisheries personnel have worked with local bass clubs for several years to maintain a count of how many bass their members are catching and the size of the bass to get an estimate on the state’s bass numbers. Those figures allow both biologists and bass anglers to get a handle on local bass populations and where larger fish might be found.

Another resource worth studying, at least when targeting large bass, is the FishOhio program, which awards anglers catching fish in Ohio waters — including largemouth and smallmouth bass — that exceed a certain length. Fishermen who catch a largemouth bass of 21 inches longer, or a smallmouth bass 20 inches or more, qualify for FishOhio recognition.

In the 2012 fishing season, there were 879 largemouth and 280 smallmouth that qualified as FishOhio catches.

I noted that all the 21-inch-and-longer largemouth bass came from lakes, reservoirs and ponds — but Three of the five most productive FishOhio-qualifying smallmouth waters last year were rivers.

Both species shared the same top-producing water: Lake Erie. But beyond Ohio’s Great Lake, the best eight places to find bronzeback and bucketmouths differed. Here’s a closer look at each, starting with Erie, and some comments from the state’s fish management and research administrator.

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