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Wisconsin may be known for its cheese factories and midwestern values, but fisherman the world over also know that Wisconsin offers some of the world's most fish friendly bodies of water. With well over 100 species swimming and spawning in Wisconsin, avid fishermen will want to take note of the many hotspots this state has to offer.

BLUEGILL
Those fishing for the hearty tasting bluegill will be amazed at the big catches they'll reel in. Lake Michigan, the Mississippi River and Lake Superior are hotspots for bluegill during the spring and summer months. Rising temperatures give way to a gigantic bluegill population in Northern Wisconsin, too. Barron county lakes are stocked full of bluegill come June. Plain garden worms are the diet of choice for the bluegill. Hot summer months provide excellent fly fishing with poppers in shallow water, though most bluegill are taken during the spring and summer in deep water with worms.


MUSKY
This long, strong fish is most prevalent in the heart of Wisconsin. The Chippewa, Flambeau, St. Croix, Black and Wisconsin rivers are all natural homes for the musky. This solitary fish lurks in weed beds and under protective cover. Anglers should hit the water during daylight hours and gear up with plugs, spoons and bucktails.


NORTHERN PIKE
A favorite among midwestern fishers, the Northern Pike makes his home in all area rivers and lakes, with the exception of the southeastern quarter of the state. Pike are most active when the water is cool, and bite best during daylight hours. A natural born predator, this tough catch prefers live fish baits and wobbling spoons. Ice fishermen will have success with tip up's, too.


SMALL MOUTH BASS
You don't have to try hard to snap a small mouth Bass in Wisconsin. This fish is heavily populated and common in medium to large streams, clear water and drainage basins. Northern Wisconsin is an especially good spot to bring home dinner, as is the Red Cedar River, which runs through Menomonie, Wisconsin. The scrappy smallmouth bass loves crayfish, natural baits and dragonfly larvae during early morning or late evening hours. Casting toward rocks and logs lightly, keeping the rod tip up and ready is the easiest way to pull in your catch.

LARGE MOUTH BASS
The large mouth bass is another popular catch in Wisconsin and considered a prized fish. Most of the state provides excellent fishing for the bass, though you'll find them in greater numbers in calm backwaters and rivers. This shallow water fish will grab on to worms, frogs, shiners and crayfish.


LAKE TROUT
Perhaps the most sought after and popular fish in Wisconsin, the Lake Trout is found in almost all bodies of water. This fighter loves earthworms, but can be caught on almost any bait. Check out northern Wisconsin lakes, where these fish run wild.

WALLEYE
In recent years, the walleye has made it's way from the larger lakes to smaller bodies of water. A common catch, the walleye swims in abundance during warm spring and summer months. Considered one of the most highly prized game fishes in Wisconsin, most are caught during spring spawning runs between mid-April and early-May. Walleyes are primarily minnow feeders, but leeches, small bullheads and nightcrawlers with work for bait, too. In the clear northern Wisconsin lakes, walleyes stay deep during the day and move to shallow water at night.

BLACK CRAPPIE
Southern Wisconsin boasts of big crappie takes, as does the Mississippi Riverbed. Light tackle is enough to snap up this catch. Small minnows and jigs kept in constant motion will help net a nice catch.

SALMON
The Apostle Islands National Lakeshore is the best place to pick up Salmon. Spring, summer and fall fishing offer anglers a great opportunity to troll the waters and make their catch. Salmon runs aplenty during the summer months and rest in water ten to thirty feet deep. You'll need a boat or long line here, but the rest, Mother Nature will take care of. Another great salmon hideaway is in Racine, WI on the Root River.

This is only a small sampling of what Wisconsin has to offer fishermen. Over two hundred different species of fish are hunted yearly. Contact your local DNR for more fishing information.