February 16 - February 29
This hotline is completed about a week in advance and contains information obtained from several sources, including local bait shops, anglers, and angling-focused websites. Ice thickness information for this hotline is also obtained from the same sources as DEC does not go out and check ice thickness. As a result, please take the necessary precaution when going on ice and be familiar with the ice safety tips and information as outlined below.
Ice Safety Tips and Reminders
Please remember ice thickness can vary greatly, even on the same water, so use extreme caution and your own good judgment if deciding to venture out. Some safety measures to follow are: using a spud to help check ice thickness, fishing with a buddy, and bringing a rope and ice-picks. Review more DEC recommendations on ice safety.
As of February 12, the flow is 500 cubic feet per second (CFS) at the dam and increases downstream with inflow from the tributaries. Steelhead are being found throughout the river. Good baits are egg sacs (blue or pink mesh), 8-12mm beads, pink worms, and egg imitating flies. For more information, view Steelhead Fishing in Lake Ontario tributaries.
The flow is 12,700 cubic feet per second (CFS) as of February 12. Steelhead are being caught, along with a few brown trout. Try egg sacs, beads or egg imitating flies. See link above for information on steelhead fishing.
Remember there are mandatory personal flotation device (PFD) zones on the river. For more information on PFD zones and life jacket loaner programs, visit the Oswego County Tourism website.
When conditions allow, a few anglers have been getting a jump start on the spring brown trout fishing on the lake. Trolling with small spoon or stickbaits usually works for the spring brown trout.
We have received several inquiries about the Big Bay access point off Kellar Road in the Town of West Monroe. This location is not a formal DEC managed access site, and the DEC does not have any ownership stake, agreement, or involvement with this site. The right-of-way (ROW) at this site is for neighboring residents with deeded access to the water. It is not for general public access. An adjacent business that is now permanently closed used to have deeded rights to the ROW and allowed parking for a fee. Anglers who paid the fee were permitted to use the ROW to access the lake. With the closure of the business, residents decided to restrict access to only those with the legal right to do so. The posted signs and restrictions of using the ROW are legal actions.
For alternate access to Big Bay, anglers can use the DEC fishing access site off Shaw Road in the Three Mile Bay Wildlife Management Area (WMA).
The launch was closed for the season on January 5th.
Other Waters in Central NY
Nothing to report at this time.
You can also listen to this hotline report by phone at (607) 753-1551. For fishing reports in more areas of New York, visit the DEC Fishing Hotlines page.
Additional Fishing Report Sources
For those interested, there are other fishing reports available in the Central NY region, which can be found through the following sites: Wayne County Tourism, Visit Oswego County, and Lake Ontario Fishing.
If you would like to contribute to the Central NY fishing report, need more fishing information, or have any fishing/fishing equipment related questions, you can contact [email protected]. Good luck fishing!
Participate in the DEC Finger Lakes Angler Diary Program
Warm water (bass, pike, etc.) angler diary cooperators are needed for Seneca, Keuka, Canandaigua, Hemlock, and Canadice Lakes. If interested, please contact Region 8 Fisheries at [email protected] or by calling 585-226-5343.
Additionally, DEC is always looking for new participants in our Finger Lakes Angler Diary Cooperator Program. Our numbers have dropped in recent years, and we need new cooperators now more than ever. Contact us to learn more about this program and how to sign up:
- If you fish Cayuga Lake, Owasco Lake, Skaneateles Lake, Otisco Lake or any of their tributaries contact the Region 7 Fisheries office at (607) 753-3095 ext. 213, or by email at [email protected].
- If you fish Canadice Lake, Canandaigua Lake, Conesus Lake, Hemlock Lake, Honeoye Lake, Keuka Lake or Seneca Lake contact the Region 8 Fisheries office at (585) 226-5343, or by email at [email protected].
Boating Safety Certificate
Under Brianna's Law, all motorboat operators will need a boating safety certificate. How soon this certificate is required depends on your age, but by January 1, 2025, all operators of motorized vessels regardless of age will need a certificate. For more information on Brianna's Law, classes, and the age breakdown view the Boating NYS Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation Boating Education site.
Freshwater Fishing Regulations
Know the Freshwater Fishing Regulations before venturing out!