Fish were biting this past weekend.

Don Roscovius, owner of Rosco’s Live Bait, said fishing was good this weekend, particularly for northern pike.

“Quite a few people were out northern fishing this weekend,” he said. “Guys did pretty well northern fishing. Live bait and spinners are working for the northerns; a few bass were caught also, but not as many reports on those as the northerns.”

Matt Modjeski, Department of Natural Resources conservation warden for Monroe County, said fishing wasn’t great but wasn’t terrible.

“Fishing this last weekend was probably a little slower; we’re still in the dog days of summer,” he said. “I think people are still catching bass, and I haven’t heard any reports on northerns, but bluegills are still being caught.”

Trout were biting, Modjeski reports

“I got out and did some trout fishing ... we haven’t had a lot of rain, so trout fishing was good,” he said. “October 15 is the closing date (for trout) ... and I think because of the cooler temps people will be out more.”

Crappies were biting this past week, Roscovius reported. He said people were catching a lot of them on live bait.

“Minnows are working the best, but a few beetle spin crappies are being caught,” he said. “Any artificial, small plastic minnow is working as long as you keep it moving. Casting and retrieving it has been producing crappies too.”

Bluegills and perch were also biting, Roscovius said, also reacting best to live bait.

“A few nice gills were caught too, most on red worms,” he said. “It’s the same story with the perch, being mostly caught with worms. Guys are still getting some nice ones in the local area, including the Lemonweir (River), and I heard they were catching some nice ones at the New Lisbon Dam, mostly worms on a hook.”

At Petenwell and Castle Rock flowages, walleyes have been biting, Roscovius reported. He said fishermen have caught plenty but only a few have been keepers.

“That has been the story all year ... lots of smaller ones, and once in a while they’re able to find one and catch one they can keep that’s over 15 inches,” he said. “Castle Rock is kind of the same story with walleyes; they’re catching a good number of fish, but not too many keepers.”

Duane Waters of Hatfield Sports Shop had little news of fishing as bait sales are down due to the draw down on Lake Arbutus.

“I imagine it’s pretty decent in the river − lake, too,” he said. “People see low water and think it’s a bad thing, but the fish will be more concentrated.”

Modjeski reported a fish kill at Moore Creek due to a liquid manure spill.

Deer hunting news has been scarce, Roscovius said. Thanks to the online registration system, he doesn’t see or hear much about deer.

“But I did have a couple customers come in and say they got their deer,” he said. “This weekend is the youth hunt, so people are coming and getting kids all lined up to partake this weekend.”

More people are out hunting, Modjeski reports, and there are deer for the taking.

“I saw a few small game hunters out and about, mostly after squirrels and archery deer hunting with the kind of cooler weather compared to opening weekend people are out more,” he said. “I got out twice, and it was really nice. There are a few mosquitoes still, but I did see deer. On patrol this weekend I saw bucks crossing roads during the daytime, so deer activity is picking up.”

Waters hasn’t received any deer hunting reports but has spotted more deer activity in the Hatfield area.

In other hunting news, hunters are no longer required to place a carcass tag on deer or turkeys they kill due to provisions inserted into the 2017-19 state budget. Since the 2017 Wisconsin Deer Hunting Regulations pamphlets have already been printed, the changes don’t appear in the printed regulations.

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