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REGION COUNTIES -- Butler, Clarion, Crawford, Erie, Forest, Lawrence, Mercer, Venango, Warren (County Guide)

October 20, 2021

Butler County
Lake Arthur
Over the last few weeks, anglers are catching a variety of fish from shore.  Live/natural bait seems to be the go-to this time of year.  Catfish are still hitting on shrimp.  Anglers are catching crappie, Yellow Perch, and Bluegill using nightcrawlers.  Anglers are catching Walleye off the roadbeds using worm harnesses.      

Erie County
Lake Erie
Anglers are catching Steelhead at the mouths of all the tributaries either by shore or by boat.  Anglers are catching Lake Trout off North East.  Anglers are catching Yellow Perch off the cribs as well, but you must find the school.
Presque Isle Bay
Anglers are catching Yellow Perch and crappie from shore and if you can find them.
Area Steelhead Tributaries
Steelhead are in full swing on the west side of Erie and with each rain, more Steelhead will be moving inland.  The east side tributaries have steelhead, but in fewer numbers.  Rain is needed to improve the fishing on the eastside.  

Mercer County
Shenango Reservoir
The lake temperatures are slowly declining, which means the fish are moving into the shallows to feed to fatten up for the winter.  A reminder that Shenango Reservoir is now designated as a Panfish Enhancement Lake.  Crappie must be nine inches to harvest, and the creel limit is 20. 
Shenango River
The Shenango fish consumption advisory is still in effect until further notice.   
All Commonwealth Waters
A reminder that all Commonwealth Waters will have a mandatory Personal Flotation Device Wear for all boats under 16 feet in length and all canoes and kayaks regardless of length starting on November 1, 2021 and ending April 30, 2022. 

October 13, 2021

Butler County
Lake Arthur
Just as quick as summer came, we are now headed into fall! Just like the trees get ready for the cold months ahead, the fish are getting ready as well.  Air temperatures are staying in the consistent 65-75 range which is dropping the water temperatures.  Anglers should try fishing structure that will hold heat, like bridge pillars, docks, exposed timber, and heavy vegetation.  Deeper water points have also shown to be productive so try trolling a worm harness or bounce a crankbait off the rocky bottom to get reactionary strikes.  As for boating, recreational use has slowed down due to the colder temperatures.  This opens the water up for more fishing opportunity!

Clarion County
Clarion River
Anglers are catching Smallmouth Bass and Walleye throughout the entire section of the river.
Piney Dam
Throughout the early-fall season, violation reports were received regarding power-boaters operating at greater than slow, no-wake speed inside the 100' prohibited zone— primarily in the area extending from I-80 (Courtleys Run) to the dam…
It is illegal to operate a boat at greater than slow, no-wake speed within 100 feet of the shoreline, docks, launch ramps, swimmers, downed skiers, persons wading in the water, anchored, moored, or drifting boats, and floats in areas marked with "slow, no wake" buoys.  "Slow, no-wake" speed is that minimum about of throttle necessary to provide both propulsion as well as allow for effective steerage.

Crawford County
Pymatuning Reservoir
DCNR has begun dropping the water level for winter pool. Anglers are still catching Yellow Perch and catfish during the day. Walleye can be targeted by jigging in the late evenings. Anglers are catching White Perch as well. White Perch are non-native to Pymatuning and any caught by anglers should be harvested, just be sure to know the difference between a White Perch and a White Bass.
Shenango River
Anglers are catching panfish and below the weir. Anglers are catching Muskellunge in fewer numbers. Most anglers are finding success using live bait and in the early mornings and late evenings. Be courteous and do not leave your litter behind when you leave, pack it out, and dispose of it properly.

Venango County

Allegheny River
Anglers are catching Smallmouth Bass throughout the entire stretch of the river. Anglers are catching Walleye when conditions allow.
French Creek
Anglers are catching Smallmouth Bass and Walleye throughout French Creek.  Several anglers are catching them on spinnerbaits and jerkbaits.
Oil Creek
The lower Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures/Keystone Select section will receive its fall stocking on 10/18/2021 (Monday).  The meeting place and time is scheduled for the Rynd Farm Train Station at 9:30 AM. 

Reports compiled by Chad Foster (, NW/SW Region Outreach and Education Coordinator, using information provided by Waterways Conservation Officers, Area Fisheries Managers and other PFBC staff.