To those that have been down recently, are any of you targeting anything else besides stripers? Although I do like hooking stripers I'm more curious if any walleye, crappie, or bluegill being are being caught with any consistency this time of year?
Jan-Feb are the slow months for most species besides stripers. Warming water is the key. Right now surface temperatures range from 48-52. If you see a rapid rise in temperature then it would be possible to get an early start on catching bass, crappie etc. The target temperature is 57F - when you see that fishing picks up for all species.
Air temperature is forecast to hit 65F today. It takes a while to get the deep water to start warming. If it does I will put that info out. You may have noticed that the water temperature is included in every fish report. I did not do a report this week because I see no difference in fish behavior this week compared to last. I report a weekly fish report beginning in March.
In most winter seasons the surface cools and water temperature is the same top to bottom. This year may be a bit different since it has taken such a long time to cool down to 48 F.
Next, in the spring time the water warms into the 60s and a separation layer begins with warm water on the surface which is separated from the cold layer below by the "thermocline". In late spring the warm layer is only a 5-10 feet thick. As it continues to warm in the summer the warm layer increases to 30-50 feet thick. In the early fall the warm layer is at its thickest and then when it cools from the top down it finally mixes with a strong wind in November or early December.