While the salmon and togue fishing improves on Sebago Lake, it continues to go great guns Down East, according to yet another positive report by regional state biologists in the region.

It nearly makes you question these guys … except that they’re out there fishing on their days off.

REGION A: SOUTHERN MAINE

The smelt spawning run is over on Sebago Lake and the bait fish now are well distributed throughout the lake, so fishing pressure has dispersed, said biologist Francis Brautigam of the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.

But the lake trout fishing has picked up, and fishermen are catching a dozen or more togue, with some in the 6- to 10-pound class, Brautigam said.

Salmon fishing also is still good despite the end of the smelt run.

“This weekend there was a high catch rate of salmon observed out on the lake,” Brautigam said.

Biologists will be stocking the bigger rivers in southern Maine this week.

REGION B: CENTRAL MAINE

In recent weeks the Hooked On Fishing derbies held around the midcoast area have impressed regional biologists, who assist at these youth-oriented fishing events.

“Last Friday in Harmony on a stream right behind the school, they were all fired up. Looking at the kids, it’s pretty cool to watch the kids outside, having a blast, just hanging out. It’s bobber fishing, so they just pitch it out and sit back. Everyone had a good time,” said IFW biologist Robert Van-Riper.

Other youth derbies and school fishing programs are on tap in the midcoast region at schools such as Mount Vernon Elementary and Whitefield Elementary School, Van-Riper said.

For information on Hooked On Fishing programs, call Emily Jones of IFW at 287-8069.

REGION C: DOWN EAST

The fishing regulations for lake trout at West Grand Lake are more liberal than in the past, and biologists are hoping fishermen catch and keep their limit to help the salmon population.

The new regulations went down to a 14-inch minimum length limit on lake trout and a bag limit of six lake trout, with only one longer than 23 inches.

The lake trout compete for smelts with the landlocked salmon and deplete the forage the salmon need in one of their heritage waters.

“It is one of the four original home lakes of the landlocked salmon since before humans were here,” said biologist Rick Jordan. “That is the priority of the management (in the region). It’s important that we would like them to harvest the lake trout that they catch. If not, they’ll build up and be more abundant.”

Both salmon and togue are still hot now in Down East lakes that still have ice out-like conditions, Jordan said.

REGION D: WESTERN MAINE

Stocking is in full swing in the western mountains, including in remote mountain ponds.

In the next few weeks, biologists will be stocking by backpack at Tea Pond in Jim Pond Township and Mountain Dimmick Pond in Caratunk, said IFW biologist Dave Boucher.

REGION E: MOOSEHEAD LAKE REGION

The salmon are biting well on Moosehead Lake and reports of smelt runs also were good, said IFW biologist Tim Obrey.

Many smaller ponds had solid runs and there are smelts in tributaries, including the Moose River, and some of the smaller tributaries in Lily Bay, Obrey reported.

“This is very good news. We believe the thinning of the lake trout population at Moose-head over the past three years has had a positive impact on the smelt population,” Obrey reported.

REGION F: EASTERN MAINE

A sporting camp owners in Brownfield had to say goodbye to their goldfish pond last week when IFW biologists reclaimed the pond with the organic root, rotenone.

The camp owners had created a goldfish pond not knowing it is illegal to transport non-native fish across the state line to stock in outside ponds, said IFW biologist Nels Kramer.

State biologists use rotenone to reclaim ponds and lakes and eliminate non-native species. The root is from a South American plant that is non-toxic and safe for birds, Kramer said.

REGION G: NORTHERN MAINE

A cold snap in The County has delayed the hatches, but low flows still have made for great fishing on the rivers.

The Aroostook River and the Meduxnekeag River in Houlton and Littleton should provide great fishing for the next two to three weeks.

“Any stretch of the Aroostook River from the headwaters right down to the border in Fort Fairfield should be excellent,” IFW biologist Frank Frost said. 

Staff Writer Deirdre Fleming can be contacted at 791-6452 or at:

[email protected]