Connecticut DEEP Fishing Report #31



Approximately 371,000 trout were stocked before Opening Day into 100 lakes and ponds and nearly 170 rivers and streams located throughout Connecticut. DEEP’s in-season stockings are now underway with nearly 230,000 additional trout scheduled to be stocked between Opening Day and the end of May.


Conditions should be very good for trout fishing this weekend. Flows are very fishable, although generally lower than typical spring levels (see stream flow graphic on page 5), comfortable weather is forecast, and there are plenty of recently stocked trout waiting for anglers.

With temperatures warming, fishing is getting better(generally fair to good now) with reports from Macedonia Brook (very good), Mill River (Hamden – slow), Norwalk River (good), Naugatuck River (good), West Branch Farmington River &Farmington River (good to very good, caddis, blue-quill working), Pequonnock River (good action once morning warms up), Quinebaug River (some nice action, catches include a 23 inch, 6.2 lb Rainbow), Fivemile River (good), Little River (fair-good), Mashamoquet Brook (fair), Natchaug River (fair to good, including 23 inch, 6.5 lb Brown), Shetucket River, Yantic River, Salmon River, Jeremy River, Blackledge River, and Hammonasett River (some action, with evening bite better, streamers, small floaters and drifting bait, some nymphs working).

Farmington River

Fishing has been good to very good and conditions for the weekend should be very good. Good weather is forecast, water temperatures are in the mid 60’s°F , West Branch flows are clear, on the low to moderate side (currently 157 cfs at Riverton with the Still River adding another 81 cfs) and very comfortable for fishing.

Hatches/patterns include Blue Wing Olive (a.k.a. Baetis vagans; #16-24) in a parachute or emerging dun (noon to 5pm), Hendrickson (a.k.a. red quill; #12-#14; try around 1:30 pm with spinners in the evening mixed in), Winter/Summer Caddis (#18-22) and Black Midge (#20-32). Also try Rusty Spinners (#16-18), Mahogany Duns/Blue Quills (#16-18), Tan Caddis (#16-18) and Winter Caddis (#18-22). Nymphing is working well now (#18-22 nymphs are always a good go-to fly). Also try Stoneflies (#6-10), Pheasant Tails (#14-20), Black Stoneflies (#18-22), Bead Head, Midge Pupa, Brassie, Zebra Midge or Copper John patterns.

Housatonic River

Fishing has been good and the river will be great for fishing this weekend. Flows are clear, and quite comfortable for wading, being lower than is typical for mid-late April (currently 884 cfs at Falls Village and 1,220 cfs at Gaylordsville). Morning water temperatures are in the upper 40’s°F, and warming a bit through the day.


Hendrickson hatch is starting and comes off around 2:00 pm. Try Hendrickson (#12- 14), March Brown (#10-12), Pheasant Tail (#12-18) & Copper John (#12-16). Try streamers (Yellow/White Zuddlers or Gray Ghost), brown and green woolly buggers as well as white muddler minnows are working.

Rivers and streams stocking update

(Note that all stocking schedules are subject to change): In western Connecticut; Eight Mile Brook, Kettletown Brook, the Mill River (Hamden, including the TMA), Mill River (Fairfield, doesn’t include the TMA), Wepawaug River, Muddy River, Pequonnock River (Trumbull Basin area),the Farmington River TMA (the West Branch Farmington River from the Goodwin Dam down to the upper boundary of the year-round catch-and-release area), Naugatuck River TMA, Pequonnock River (Beardsley Park), and the Farmington River TMA (from the lower Collinsville dam to the route 177 bridge) were stocked. In eastern Connecticut; the Branford River, Farm River (both upper & lower), West River, Beaver Brook, Moosup River, Shetucket River, Susquetonscut Brook, Ten Mile River (Lebanon), Eightmile River, East Branch Eightmile River, Coginchaug River, Yantic River (including the TMA), Five Mile River (Thompson, Putnam, Killingly), Quinebaug River (Thompson, Putnam, Killingly, Plainfield, Griswold), Pachaug River, Hop river, Hockanum River (areas upstream of the TMA & downstream of the TMA), Tankerhoosen River, Crystal Lake Brook, Salmon River (Colchester, including the TMA), Still River, Latimer Brook and Pattaconk Brook were stocked.


Trout fishing was generally fair to good with reports from Beach Pond (17.5 inch, 2 lb Brown Trout among the catches), Long Pond (steady), Candlewood Lake (lots of trout in shallows), Squantz Pond (“bunch of bigger Rainbows caught”), Ball Pond (fair action at best, but catches include a 6 lb Brown Trout), Rogers Lake (good bite early morning), Highland Lake (fair trolling, but slow from shore), West Hill Pond (good trolling minnows), and Quonnipaug Lake (on the slow side, but some nice browns from the bottom are being caught). Also some good reports from several of the Community Fishing Waters including Birge Pond and Baldwin Pond (“…plenty of fish still in there”).

Lakes and ponds stocking update

(Note that all stocking schedules are subject to change): In western Connecticut; Hop Brook Lake, Black Rock Lake, Mount Tom Pond, Highland Lake, Mirror Lake, Birge Pond, and Bunnells Pond. In eastern Connecticut; Branford Supply Pond, Quonnipaug Lake, Lake Saltonstall, Beaver Brook Park Ponds, Billings Lake, Hewitt Fly Pond, Lantern Hill Pond, Cedar Lake, Higganum Reservoir, Pasture Pond, Wauregan Reservoir, Walkers Reservoir, Bigelow Pond, Paine Pond, Gay City Pond, Dodge Pond, Norwich Pond, Uncas Lake, Pattaconk Lake and Millers Pond.


Fishing ranged from fair to very good at the Trout Parks. All were stocked before Opening Day and four of them, Black Rock Pond, Chatfield Hollow, Southford Falls and Wharton Brook, were stocked again on Opening Day. The Southford Falls, Wolfe Park (Great Hollow Pond), Black Rock State Park (both Branch Brook & Black Rock Pond), Kent Falls, Wharton Brook, Day Pond and Mohegan Park Pond Trout Parks were stocked this week.


fishing has picked up some over the last week in a number of areas, with bass still finding their spring spots and temperatures warming only slowly. Good reports are from Highland Lake (fish structure) and Lake Lillinonah, fair reports from Candlewood Lake and Lower Bolton Lake, and slow fishing reported from Lake McDonough, Congamond Lakes, and Mansfield Hollow Reservoir. Tournament angler reports are from Amos Lake (windy with whitecaps, water temps 48- 50° F, fair fishing on early bite, with some nice fish weighed, 5.8 lb lunker, and a 2.8 lb average weight per fish), Gardner Lake (slow fishing, with a 2.56 lb lunker), Beach Pond (cold water, very slow, with a 3.3 lb lunker), Pattagansett Lake (tough fishing, few catches, with a 3.08 lb lunker), and Candlewood Lake (bass are starting to move in, lunkers include a 6.9 lb bass caught on a jerk-bait).


Some smallmouth are being found, with reports from Candlewood Lake (picking up, look for them shallow), Highland Lake (fair) and Lake Lillinonah (some). Tournament angler report from Candlewood Lake (some really nice winning bags including 30.5 lb, 29.5 lb and 24 lb weights – mostly smallies, but many are still finding it hard to catch many), Gardner Lake (none) and Beach Pond (none).


catches reported from Squantz Pond (at night, including several fish in the 7-8 lb range), at Mashapaug lake however, anglers are not having any luck (fish usually can be found over humps deep, but not last week).


action is good in a number of areas throughout the state, with reports from Candlewood Lake (some real slabs can be found), Lake Saltonstall, Lake of Isles, Pachaug Pond and Avery Pond.


The river remains cool (warming slowly) and flows are currently well below typical mid-April levels. Some fish are in the river but reports for AMERICAN SHAD are few (should pick up as water temperatures increase). Shad darts and willow leafs generally work well. BLACK CRAPPIE fishing is good. STRIPED BASS are being found in the river, mostly schoolie size and action is slow. Some NORTHERN PIKE catches continue to be reported in the Middletown to Haddam Meadow section. Anglers are finding some SMALLMOUTH BASS in the mainstem.


Surface water temperatures in Long Island Sound (LIS) are in the mid 50’s 0 F.


fishing is good in the Housatonic River, Connecticut River (DEEP Marine Headquarters fishing pier), and the Black Hall River. Sand and blood worms will do the trick especially in murky water.


fishing is on the slow side. Early season flounder spots include the lower Mystic River, Poquonock River at Bluff Point State Park, mouth of the Thames River in the Pine Island area including Baker Cove, Niantic River including the bay, and Norwalk Harbor.


fishing spring season runs April 1st – April 30th. However, with water temperatures in the low 50’s °F fishing has been very good with worms, clams and Asian crabs. The New Haven breakwaters are one of the better early season fishing spots for tog. Try fishing in 8 – 25 feet of water. Shallower the better (warmer). This next week should be fantastic. Remember that the season is closed May 1 – June 30th (inclusive).





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