Spring fishing report for area lake waters

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Rob McComas with a largemouth bass at night.

Rob McComas with a largemouth bass at night.

It’s been a slow start to fishing this spring, although just about everything was in place when it should be. The fish seemed to make up their own minds when they wanted to start biting.

Since fish don’t have calendars, they aren’t always on the page we think they should be. With water temps warming up into the upper fifties in most area lakes by the first week in April, and coinciding with a full moon, one would have expected a big wave of spawners, but they were a little late for the most part.

There are some other indicators that the fish should be shallow. When you see blooming Dogwood trees and a lot of turtles in shallow coves, the fish are normally there.

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The fish on Lake Adger seemed to start biting a little bit earlier than Lake Lure, at least the largemouth were. Some credible reports of fish being caught included size and numbers. This is the third year that Lake Adger has been producing some really big largemouth bass between 5 and 9 pounds. Reports of your typical Lake Adger size bass fish from 9 in. -12 in., have ranged from 5-15 a day. Not much heard about crappie, other than a lot of bait is being sold by Ken at Silver Creek campground, which sometimes is an indicator the fish might be biting.

Lake Lure has been rather contrary. Besides some sketchy reports of some hard to believe catches, most anglers are reporting tough bass, crappie and white bass fishing. The fish were not doing what they normally do by the second week of April, but reports are slowly improving each day. The yellow perch have been cooperating nicely, and Lake Lure has some very nice yellow perch, size and numbers. The best bass fishing can be after dark.

There have not been any good reports of the hatchery-supported section of Green River on opening week in several years. One angler said he told the NCWRC to “dump a couple more nets of fish in there” when they stock. It seems to fish better a little later in the spring. Most reports on opening day were creels of about two or three for many folks.

Lake James has been fishing really good this spring. Most tournaments have been taking stringers of 18-22 pounds to win. There’s been five fish limit stringers of smallmouth weighing in around 14 pounds at tournaments. Crappie fishing was good earlier in April, mostly up the Catawba River.

Most of the big lakes like Wylie, Murray, Hartwell and Hickory have been fishing really good. It’s taking some heavy bags of fish to win a tournament on these lakes.

No matter if you are fishing a big lake like Hartwell, or a small farm pond near your house, remember spring is spawn time for most species of fish. Keeping a fish now, not only kills that fish, but also the eggs they may be carrying or the fry they will be guarding for the nest six weeks or so. Fish like Crappie and Perch are a little more numerous and can handle some reasonable harvesting, but don’t over do it.

And if you catch a big fish, please, please, please, take a quick picture and release it exactly where you caught it, don’t haul it around in a boat for a few hours and release it miles up the lake. That ruins that fishes spawn, and the likelihood their fry will make it. It’s not up to someone else to protect our resources, it’s up to you and me.