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Early June means big bream action


As the weather heats up so does angling on Natural State waters

By Randy Zellers

AGFC Communications

Caty Young (right) was at DeGray Lake recently when she caught a large bluegill to make her day! She was using nightcrawlers.

Early June seems synonymous to us with big bream activity. But that's not all that's happening at DeGray, as our reporters tell us.

Capt. Darryl Morris of Family Fishing Trips guide service says that even with the water tempeature on the rise (77 earlier this week) the crappie 'are hanging in there. We've caught nice slabs as shallow as 6 feet and as deep as 15 feet.' And guide John Duncan out of Iron Mountain Marina says catfishing is really big now on DeGray, but crappie probably still provides the best report this week. 'The bigger crappie have started stacking up in the brushpiles.' Find those brushpiles above the thermocline, which is ays is around 20-22 feet now.

Then fish close to the top of the piles. He terms the best approach as 'run and gun': Fish a pile, catch a few, run to the next pile.'

No matter where you fish, send us your photos to for publication in this newsletter and in the online Weekly Fishing Report.

And keep reading to find out where the other hot spots are this week…

— Bates Field and Stream (501-4701846) said the lake is its normal stain. Water level has returned to normal. Bream reports continue to be good.

They’re biting redworms, crickets and Dynamax Jigs.

Crappie are good. Anglers are having success with minnows, jigs, hand-tie jigs and Dynamax Jigs, with white/chartreuse colors working best.

Black bass are good. Try spinnerbaits, crankbaits, plastic worms, topwater lures, poppers, frogs and buzzbaits. Catfish are biting well on stinkbait, goldfish, bream and nightcrawlers.

Little Red River — Greg Seaton of littleredflyfishingtrips. com (501-690-9166) said the river is clear with one unit running round-the-clock.

They are using Greers Ferry to regulate the electrical grid due to large releases at Bull Shoals and Table Rock on the White River. Due to heavy spring rains these lakes are at their maximum level and both generators and spillway gates are being used to lower these levels. “I was informed that this schedule would continue for several days, so it would be best to check the daily Southwestern Power Administration ( forecast before planning your trip,” Greg says.

“Wade fishing is not an option on the Little Red while we are on this schedule. Drift fishing with large nymphs, San Juan worms, and micro-jigs is the best option. Be aware of docks and obstacles while drifting since the current will be stronger than the last few mornings. Stay safe, and good fishing!”

Lowell Myers of Sore Lip’em All Guide Service (501-2300730) says the Greers Ferry Lake level is still above seasonal pool. Recent rains have caused the Little Red River to be off-color occasionally.

However, daily generation helps clear it up to fishable conditions. Generation pattern has been unpredictable recently, but most days see lower water providing wading opportunities especially in the mornings. Always check before heading to the Little Red River by calling the Corps of Engineers Little Rock District water data system (501-3625150) for Greers Ferry Dam water release information or check the Corps of Engineers website (swl-wc.usace. for real-time water release and the Southwestern Power Administration website ( to see forecasted

See FISH, page A9

Photo courtesy of AGFC FISH

From page A8

generation schedule. For flyfishing, Lowell recommends San Juan worms, caddis pupa, hare’s ear, sowbugs and streamers. Hot pink and white bodies on chartreuse jigheads are recommended for Trout Magnet spin fishing. Be safe while enjoying the river.

— Tommy Cauley of Fishfinder Guide Service (501-9401318) said the water level at Greers Ferry Lake is at 469.30 feet msl and on the rise. It is 6.76 feet above normal pool for this time of year of 462.54 feet msl. Crappie catching continues to be good in and around bushes and now out to pole timber and brushpiles, from super shallow out to 25 feet on jigs and minnows.

Catfishing is good all over the lake and rivers, with the flathead spawn upon us; use cut and live bait for any application. Walleye are scattered with the new rise and not a lot of sun. When things level out they should get grouped up good right outside of bushes and even in some bushes, Grubs and crawlers are working best. Hybrid bass and white bass are eating at will all over lake and in the rivers on grubs, inline spinners and spoons. They’re found right in front of bushes out to 30 feet.

Black bass are chewing well with shad spawns, and just plain eating after their spawns, on a variety of baits in a variety of places. Bream are doing well all over lake with limits coming in use crawlers, crickets, small inline spinners and crankbaits.

Fish ’N Stuff (501-834-5733) in Sherwood says the water is high and the clarity is clear.

Bass are biting in the early mornings on Whopper Ploppers in white and ghost minnow colors. Caroline rigs are also working in 10-20 feet of water, and Gitzits are getting hit around trees. At night the bass are biting on black/purple spinnerbaits and plum apple Old Monster River Tail Worms.

Harris Brake Lake — Harris Brake Lake Resort (501889-2745) said the clarity is “pretty clear” and the water is back down to normal level.

Bream are good. They’re biting both redworms and crickets. The crappie bite is good at 13-14 feet depth on minnows or jigs. Black bass are fair; no other details were provided. No reports on catfish.

Lake Overcup — For more information on conditions on Lake Overcup call the AGFC Mayflower Regional Office at (877) 470-3309 weekdays 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Johnny “Catfish” Banks of Overcup Bait Shop and R.V.

Park (501-354-9007) said Overcup’s water level is up 1 feet above normal, while surface temperature Tuesday was around 72 degrees. Clarity is off merely from the rain and wind. Black bass are doing well on crankbaits and plastic worms. Catfishing also are doing well on jugs and trotlines baited with perch or big trotline minnows. Bream are slow, but they were doing well before the temperature change and the rain. Crappie are being caught on small minnows and jigs. Some crappie are being found in 3 feet of water and others in 6 feet depth. Johnny says, “Come see us at Overcup Bait Shop on Highway 9 for all your fishing needs.”

Brewer Lake — David Hall, owner of Dad’s Bait Shop (501-977-0303), said the lake is fairly clear and the surface water temperature is ranging 70-75 degrees. Water level is high. Bream reports are good. Crickets are working great, and David reports he has crickets in stock. Crappie are good. They are 12-20 feet deep in underwater brush. Use minnows. Black bass are good. They are found at 5-6 feet depth and are hitting on top of the water when it warms up during midday.

They’re being caught using goldfish, David said – “a lot of people do not have bass minnows” –l and on jigs. Catfish are biting well on jugs and trotlines baited with goldfish.

Sunset Lake — Local fishermen are saying they're catching catfish on fresh chicken livers, minnows, bait shrimp and stink baits. Bream are moving up shallow, biting crickets and redworms and brown Rock Hoppers. Bass are doing best in the morning.

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