Fishing Report USA

Fishing report The saltwater fishing scene kicked up a notch over the past week with striped bass, bluefish and fluke keeping anglers quite enthused about the sport. Weakfish, though spotty, are also making a few memorable trips. Even the weather has been cooperating lately.

Several nice striped bass were reported over the past few days. Mike Manente of Bridgeport picked up a 20.30-pound striped bass off the former Remington Gun Club. He caught the fish on a bunker chunk and weighed it at Stratford Bait & Tackle. Jack Potochney, 6, of Norwalk, scored with a 38-inch striped bass. He caught the fish on a Storm Shad and had his catch verified by Fisherman’s World.

Striped bass action is very good. Most of the fish are catch-and-release schoolie bass, but plenty of fish in the keeper 28- to 32-inch class are available. Some of the best bass spots are Sandy Point along the western edge of New Haven Harbor, the rocky points along the Milford coastline, the mouth of the Housatonic River, the Stratford Shoal, Buoy No. 18, Buoy No. 20, Fayerweather Island, Penfield Reef, South Pine Creek, Sherwood Island State Park, Buoy No. 11B, Buoy No. 28C, the tips of Sheffield Island, and the Housatonic River off the Stratford boat launching ramp, Bonds Dock, the Devon power plant, and the river’s confluence with the Naugatuck River.

Fluke action is steadily improving along the Connecticut coast, but New York still holds most of the doormats. Albert Smith of Easton and Ed Sabo of Bridgeport did manage to catch two nice fluke last week in local waters. Smith’s fish weighed 4.90 pounds and was taken from the “BH” Buoy. Sabo’s fluke tipped the scales at 5.50 pounds and was caught off Fairfield Beach. Both fluke were weighed at Jimmy O’s Bait & Tackle.

Elsewhere, small one- to three-pound bluefish are biting poppers and spoons off Seaside Park. Weakfish have been taken intermittently on lures and sandworms off Long Wharf, Charles Island and

Penfield Reef. Black sea bass are showing up in the channels of New Haven Harbor; and blackfish season is closed until June 15.
Saturday is free fishing day in Connecticut. Anglers can fish on this day without a freshwater fishing license. This day would be a great time for experienced anglers to introduce friends to the sport without the added expense of licenses. Also, the state Department of Environmental Protection will open the observation area at the Rainbow Reservoir Dam fish ladder on the Farmington River in Windsor (Exit 40 off I-91). The observation area will be opened Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Visitors might see migrating shad and Atlantic salmon in the dam’s fish ladder.

Anglers are still enjoying good trout fishing around the state. Bob Casella of Milford caught a 2.20-pound rainbow trout last week from Wolfe Park on a nightcrawler. Bob Coyle of North Haven got a big surprise in the Naugatuck River where he caught a 4.80-pound Atlantic salmon on a Kastmaster spoon. Stratford Bait & Tackle weighed in the salmon, which was originally stocked into the river last fall.

Those looking for trout this coming weekend should visit the Farmington River, Hammonasset River, Pootatuck River, the Trumbull section of the Pequonnock River, Quinnipiac River, Wepawaug River, Mill River, Saugatuck River, the Blackberry River, East Aspetuck River, East Twin Lake, Wononscopomuc Lake, Highland Lake, Southford Falls State Park Pond, Great Hollow Pond, Candlewood Lake, Lake Mohegan and West Branch (Hogback) Reservoir.

— FRANK MCKANE JR.

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