Home of “The Hoover Fishing Report”


This site owned and operated by Jim Horan and is copyrighted.  Copyright © 2023 All Rights reserved.


We will attempt to keep you abreast of news regarding fishing and boating activities that are available to the public at Hoover Reservoir, via this page, which we hope to update at least weekly.  This information comes from ODNR- Div. Of Wildlife, Watershed Management, Old Dutchman Bait and Tackle and from sharing members of the public.  

To help everyone receive maximum enjoyment when fishing Hoover Reservoir, we ask for your support. Please take a minute and share some of the information of your recent fishing experience in the form provided for below.  To be helpful to everyone, it would be appreciated if you would include some information about "patterns". (If you do NOT want your name published, please inform us in the “Comment” box and we’ll refer to you as “An angler” and we'll honor your wishes. However we do have to have your name submitted with the report.)  We will also appreciate your input on ways we can make this page more beneficial to you.  Please submit reports by Tuesday evening as we would like to report only current information.

Please fill in form to report your Hoover results....



If you would like to be added to our "notification" list, please "EMAIL us with just the word "ADD", and your full name, and we will notify you when updates occur. Because of mistakes in email addresses, we ask that you do NOT use the report form above to request being added to the notification list. We will not sell or share your names. (NOTE: If you have requested to be added to the list and have NOT received a HFR email, you'll need to contact your ISP and have "" put on a "safe" list (not spam) or for most folks, just add that email to your address book. We add every request to our 1000+ group list but we can not overcome your ISP's spam filter without your assistance.) NOTE: If you are an AOL user, you may not be able to receive our email as we have experienced many "rejected" emails to subscribers.  We request you send us another email address as we will NO LONGER add AOL addresses.


Hoover Fishing Report    Copyright © 2023  All Rights Reserved.


FO = Fish Ohio. A program for anglers, with ODNR awarding a certificate and hat pin for catching fish of a          specified minimum length. Details available at local bait and tackle stores.

LOTW = Lake of the Woods, East side, Middle section of lake across from Red Bank Ramp.         

C&R = Catch and Release, allowing fish to be enjoyed another day by anglers.

Riprap =Rock works around roadways and bridges to prevent erosion.

2023 Hoover Sports Anglers (HSA)   (C&R Fish Ohio species at Hoover)

NOTE: You can now go online and print a very attractive certificate of your FO catch and also reserve your hat pin.  Go to FISH OHIO. (New URL)

Following are minimum size requirements for Fish Ohio species available at Hoover.


CARP - 28”





 MUSKY - 40"









SUCKER - 20"


Pete Wilms - 28"

Mike Bloomfield - 29"

Michael Cole - 26"



Michael Cole - 42.25"

Michael Gifford - 13.5"

Pete Wilms - 13.5"

Jeff Tennant - 13"










2023 Contributing Reporters (CR)

Don Abrams

Mike Bloomfield

Stanley Bulejski

Bill Canfield

Michael Cole

Scott Furst

Michael Gifford

Jack Hollerich

Amanda Johnson

Chris Lucus

Rork Matthews

Nick Radabaugh

Rick Stelzer

Jeff Tennant

Pete Wilms

Week ending 5/31/23

The lake is -0.92 feet from full pool.  We’ll have a Full Moon Saturday, June 3rd.

CRAPPIE:  On Wednesday Michael Gifford reported, “I went fishing this afternoon at with my buddy Bill Yuhas.  We both caught our limit, but only kept our 4 biggest ones 10 1/2"- 12".  We put over 50 back in the lake.   We used a Bobber and Minnow, in 3'-4' of water, by downed trees and brush piles.  Fished M-E and LOTW areas.  Water was around 72 degrees.”  On Friday Michael told us, “I went out fishing today with another fishing buddy of mine - Van Peterman.  Things were a lot different today, than Wednesday.  The water temperature was only 62 to start out, and got to about 68.  We caught 32 fish, but once again, most were too small to keep.  We fished LOTW, M-E and shoreline East side. We used Bobbers and Minnows, trolled with drop weight and Minnow and Erie Dearies tipped with Night Crawlers.  Had some action in 3'-4' of water with a Bobber, but more back out in 8'-14' of water trolling.”  Jeff Tennant reported he fished, “Wednesday from 5:30 to 9 with John Schaeffer - caught roughly 80-100 fish but only managed 20 keepers, largest of which was my FO (13”). All were caught using Jigs in roughly 3’of water. All returned to be caught another day.”  Don Abrams fished Sunday and told us, “Started off solo at around 6 a.m. and had a slow start, catching small fish casting Swim Baits into shallow water in the M-W side. Picked up a friend and his son at 8:30 a.m. and headed to a cove in the M-W side and found them in 6-8’ of water. No area produced a lot of quality fish but we found some nice keepers while moving around, casting shallow and pulling the baits out deep. Most fish were caught on small White Paddle Tails. Got some males that still had spawning colors but didn’t get any females with eggs. Looks like the spawn might be coming to an end. They ended up taking 20 or so 10”-11.5” fish home.” On Monday Hack Hollerich & a friend fished the N-E in 4-6’ of water using Minnows and also Big Joshy Swim Baits and caught 14 fish up to 11”.  Michael Gifford trolled Minnows in 8’-20’ depths Monday in M-E and caught 20 fish.

WHITE BASS: No reports.

SAUGEYE: On Friday Michael Gifford fished with Van Peterman and reported, “Around 12:30 we anchored the boat in 11' of water in M-E.  Van cast and retrieved an Erie Dearie tipped with a Night Crawler, He caught two fish (15:” & 18”).”  On Sunday, while fishing in the M-W section, Don Abrams & friend, “also landed 15 or so fish throughout the day. Got a few trolling Shad imitating Cranks, but the most and biggest were caught casting Swim Baits. Most were 10”-12” but sent them home with 3 ranging from 17”-20”.”  Monday Michael Gifford trolled M-E with Minnows and caught a 16” fish.

 BLUEGILL/ PERCH: No report.

: No reports.

: Jack Hollerich & a friend fished the N-E section Monday in .4’-6’ depths using a variety of baits and caught 8 fish up to 24”.  On Friday Michael Cole used cut Shad in N-E and C&R a FO (26”).

BLUE CATFISH:  Don Abrahams said his friend’s son “landed a nice 25” fish on a Pink Paddle Tail tipped with a Wax Worm in the M-W area on Sunday.” Thursday, Michael Cole fished from 4:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m. and C&R 3 fish, including a FO (42.25”) using cut Shad on Cooper-Santee/Slip Bobber rig in 3’-5’ depth in N-E.  On Friday he fished in morning and C&R 3 fish up to 31” using same pattern.

FLATHEAD CATFISH: Amanda Johnson caught a 15-lb. fish on a live Blue Gill in 12’ of water Tuesday.

CARP: No report.

LONG NOSE GAR:  No reports.

Week ending 5/24/23

The lake is -0.26 feet from full pool.  Bill Canfield found surface temperature Monday was 70 degrees.

CRAPPIE:  Bill and Paula Canfield fished, “Thursday from 11:30 a.m. -5:00 p.m. and caught about 50 fish, with 15 between 9”-11”. Fishing was poor in the midday hours, but improved later in the afternoon, presumably due to warming water, or more diffused light, or other factors. All fish were caught on 1/16 oz. Jigs with Twister Tails. Bill & Paula fished Monday and Tuesday. “The “magic” numbers seemed to be fish that were actively spawning in 5’ or less of water related to weeds, brush or wood cover, and fish suspended in 10’ of water or more. We caught 150 or more fish each day, but the proportion of fish that were over 9” was small. Paula caught a 12-1/8” fish on a 1/16-oz. Jig with a Twister Tail, which was the largest fish of these two days. We fished exclusively in the M-W and M-E sections.  All fish were relating to brush or shoreline, mainly in 5’ of water or less, in the M-W and M-E sections.”  Jeff Tennant reported that he, “fished M-E section in kayak from 7:30 - 9:30 Friday evening in 2’-4’ of water and caught 15-20 fish all on Jigs and none keepers.”  On Monday Jeff,  “caught 35 from 5:30 - 9 p.m. on Jigs in about 3’ of water. Only 3 of which were keeper size.”

WHITE BASS: No reports.


 BLUEGILL/ PERCH: No report.

: No reports.

: Friday evening, while fishing for Crappie, Jeff Tennant, “caught about a 3-lb. fish in M-E.”

BLUE CATFISH:  Thursday, Michael Cole fished the N-E using, “cut Bait on Santee-Cooper rig and Slip-Bobber and C&R 3 fish in up to 34” in 4’-7’ depths.”  On Friday Michael returned and fished from 3-5p.m. and C&R 4 fish including 2 FO (36”, 42”).  On Tuesday Michael again fished the N-E and C&R 4 fish including a FO (36”). Rork Matthews fished Monday evening in North pool with Shrimp in ~ 28’ depth and caught a 21” fish.


CARP: No report.

LONG NOSE GAR:  No reports.

Week ending 5/17/23

The lake is +0.17 feet from full pool.  Bill Canfield found surface water temperature at 11:30 a.m. Thursday was 66, and went up to 71 at 4 p.m. due to a sunny day. On Sunday Scott Furst found them to be 68 in North pool. We will have a New Moon on Friday, May 19th.

CRAPPIE:  Pete & Stu Wilms fished Wednesday in the a.m. and found fish in M-E section using Minnows/Bobber. Pete C&R a FO (13.5”).  Jeff Tennant reports that he, “fished with my friend, John Schaeffer from 10 a.m.- 7:30 p.m. in N-W section Wednesday and caught roughly 100 fish all in 5’ of water or less on Jigs - probably 30 - 40 of keeper length but all released - many with eggs.” Thursday, Bill & Paula Canfield told us they, “fished the M-E and M-W basin and caught approximately 50 fish, including 28 from 9”-12”. Fish were in anywhere from 4 ½’ of water to suspended over 16’, always relating to brush. Fish were scattered and not concentrated. A substantial proportion of the fish were males, and many of the females were full of eggs, while a few of them had underdeveloped eggs. These factors lead us to believe we are currently on the front end of spawning activity, which should heat up in the next couple of weeks. We fished from 11:30 a.m.- 6 p.m.. All fish were caught on 1/16 oz. Round Head Jigs with Twister Tails.”  Chris Lucus told us they, “Fished Saturday morning in the M-E and M-W sections. Caught 10 small fish (3’ down in 8’ depth over a tree crown. Moved over to the M-W section and found larger fish (3’ down in 6 depth, in the brush).  They caught 40, including 12 over 9” and a FO (13”). All caught on Minnows/Bobbers.”  Don Abrams, “Fished M-E side on Monday. Took a bit to figure out the best location/bait, but a 1.5” White Paddle Tail on a Road Runner Jig worked best for me today, casted parallel to brush and also casted shallow and slowly reeled into deeper water. The better fish were caught about 5-6’ outside of the brush. Nice mix of male and female fish. Females looked like they were about to burst and the males had their finest tuxedos on. On Sunday Scott Furst reported, “The fish are trying to spawn. I C&R 40 plus. A handful of males that were in their spawning colors. I don't believe I caught any that were in less than 4' of water. I caught many on the Slip Bobber set around 6’ deep, in over 10’ of water. Many coming from open water in the cove and not near any cover at all. I caught fish in the Middle and North sections. They were hitting Jigs and Plastics, which is my preferred way of fishing. And also on Minnows under a Slip Bobber. Rick Stelzer reported, “Fished both Thursday and Friday and handled many, many fish using Jig and Plastics in 4-7’ in front of main lake brush. Most were 10-12” with eggs.”

WHITE BASS: No reports.

SAUGEYE/WALLEYE: Bill & Paula Canfield reported that they, “caught 9 fish, all in the M-W section, while fishing for Crappies with Jigs and Twister Tails. 8 of them were 8–12”, with one that was 15 ¾”.”

 BLUEGILL/ PERCH: No report.

: No reports.

: Mike Bloomfield fished Tuesday and told us that he , “caught 16 fish including 3 FO (26”, 27”, 29”)  all on Shrimp in 4’ in North pool.”

BLUE CATFISH:  No reports.


CARP: No report.

LONG NOSE GAR:  No reports.

Week ending 5/10/23

The lake is -0.25 feet from full pool.  Scott Furst found surface temperature to be 56 early Saturday and saw them hit 60 when sun came out. .

CRAPPIE:  On Thursday Michael Gifford C&R 13 fish including a FO (13.5”) using Minnows in 12-14’ depths in M-E section.  Pete & Stu Wilms fished the M-E section on Friday a.m.  and caught 20 fish , 8-12", in 4-6' depths using Minnows under Bobber.  All caught 5-10' from shore.  On Monday they fished same pattern and caught 24 fish, 8-12”.  Scott Furst send us this: “I fished Saturday. The warm nights in the weather forecast should give the fish a nudge towards the shallows this week. I fished primarily on the S-E pool but ended up at Oxbow before the day was over. . Most fish were not up shallow but were 15' or deeper. They are definitely staging for the spawn. The water was cleaner and clearer than I expected with the recent rains. I caught fish by holding a Jig over their heads on Livescope, until they swam away or they ate it. Pearl with Chartreuse or Pink worked as well as anything.”

WHITE BASS: No reports.

SAUGEYE/WALLEYE: Rick Stelzer reported that he, “C&R 15 fish in Middle pool on Monday. However, only 3 we keepers 16” - 19”. Most were around 12” - 13”.  Jigs and Plastics in 6’ or less.”

 BLUEGILL/ PERCH: No report.

: Michael Gifford used a Minnow in M-E section in 12-14” of water and caught a 14” fish on Thursday.

: Michael Gifford fished the M-E section Thursday and caught a 21” fish on a Minnow.  On Monday Pete Wilms C&R a FO (28”) using a Minnow/Bobber in 8-12’ depths in a cove in M-E section.

BLUE CATFISH:  No reports.


CARP: No report.

LONG NOSE GAR:  No reports.






     5/10/23   From Nick Radabaugh, the Fisheries Management Supervisor for District 1 (central Ohio), Div. Of Wildlife: “Hoover will receive a stocking of saugeye fingerlings, likely next week or the week after. It is scheduled to receive a minimum of 100 fingerlings/acre and potentially 200 fingerlings per acre, dependent on hatchery production this year. This will result in somewhere between 290,000 – 580,000 saugeye going in to Hoover this year.”



       5/10/23      From Nick Radabaugh, Div. of Wildlife sent us this “The Catfish regulation is changing this year at Hoover. In this year’s regulations you will see there is no longer a special regulation for Channel and Blue Catfish in Hoover. That is because we have removed the previous regulation and reverted back to the separate statewide regulations for Channel and Blue Catfish. As a reminder the statewide regulation for Channel Catfish is no daily limit, but only 1 fish over 28” can be harvested. The statewide regulation for Blue Catfish is no daily limit, but only 1 fish over 35” can be harvested. This regulations are currently in effect for Hoover and replace the previous split limit of 1 fish over 28” and 3 fish under 18” for Blue and Channels.”  He added, “We are still stocking Hoover with Blues, but on an every other year basis. Last October, Hoover received 28,859 advanced Blue Catfish fingerlings that averaged about 5 inches. We will stock Hoover again in 2024 and continue to monitor and adjust our management to maintain the exceptional Blue Catfish fishery we see today.”

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 From Rich Zweifel - We have conducted numerous surveys of gizzard shad, blue cats, and channel cats at Hoover over the last several years.  These surveys have provided a lot of insights … I’ll try to briefly summarize.     

Gizzard shad:

We have done a lot of shad surveys at Hoover. In fact, we conducted a shad survey last Monday night (8/12/19).  There are lots of shad in Hoover.  Preyfish don’t appear to be limiting.  

Blue catfish:

We have been surveying the Hoover blue catfish population every year since 2016.  Stocking success of blue catfish advanced fingerlings has been high in Hoover.  We stocked fish in every year from 2011 – 2017 (except 2014 because of hatchery production failure) and have gotten returns from all of those stockings.  We recently started alternate year stocking at Hoover because 1) the initial stockings have developed a good population there, and 2) also to allow us to expand blue cat stocking to other reservoirs.  The blues are growing fast and are starting to produce the trophy-size fish we were hoping for. 
We have been assessing the Hoover blue cat population every year for the last 4 years and there is no evidence that they are successfully reproducing in Hoover.  Which is fine; we don't stock blue cats (or any fish really) to establish a self-sustaining population.  That is not the goal.  The goal is to diversify the catfishing opportunities and to provide some trophy-sized fish.  It seems as though we are meeting that goal at Hoover

 10/23/19-  Marty reminded me yesterday that we did not plan to stock blue catfish in Hoover this fall.  We are happy with the current population of blue cats in Hoover and have pulled back the stocking to every other year.  So from here on out, Hoover will be stocked with blue cats in even-numbered years (stocking in 2020, 2022, etc...).  The every other year stocking approach allows us to expand the blue catfish program to other reservoirs throughout the state.  We are still trying to expand this program, so switching to the every other year approach after a good population is established following 5-6 years of annual stockings gives us the flexibility to stock more total acres of water.   We have been assessing the Hoover blue cat population every year for the last 4 years and there is no evidence that they are successfully reproducing in Hoover.  Which is fine; we don't stock blue cats (or any fish really) to establish a self-sustaining population.  That is not the goal.  The goal is to diversify the catfishing opportunities and to provide some trophy-sized fish.  It seems as though we are meeting that goal at Hoover     

Channel catfish:

There are a lot of channel catfish in Hoover; it’s a high density population.  Hoover channels can live into their early 20s, but they don’t grow super fast.  Growth appears to have been average long before blue catfish were ever stocked in Hoover.  It takes 18-20 years for channel catfish to get to Fish Ohio size in Hoover, on average.  Generally, what we’ve seen with channel catfish populations throughout Ohio, is that the more fish there are, the slower they grow.  Its not surprising that the channel catfish growth in Hoover is average. 

Also, reproductive success of channel catfish appears to be very inconsistent from year to year, which is pretty typical for most freshwater fish populations.  While there are some fish spawned in every year, the spawns in a few  years produce a majority of the fish.  It appears that there were big spawns in 2002-2004 and 2008-2011, so most of the fish in Hoover right now were produced in those 7 years.  Catfish don’t live forever and there are just very few of those older/larger fish in the population right now.  The fish from the 2002-2004 year classes should just now be starting to reach some trophy sizes.