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Action in Central Wisconsin for multi-species is really turning on. Anglers are having a lot of fun catching walleyes, crappies, bass and pike. In addition to the previously mentioned species action has been very good for bluegills and catfish. All in all the bite has been extremely good.

Most of the anglers are targeting panfish right now which are the bread and butter of many outdoorsmen and women. Panfish are readily abundant and relatively easy to catch. Crappies and bluegills are entering their spawning season right now and can be targeted on their shallow beds.

Most panfish beds are located in water less than three feet deep. Catching panfish at this time of the year as is simple as running a small Aberdeen hook suspended below a bobber and rigging it with either a worm or a small minnow and tossing it up towards the beds. Wait for the bobber to go down and set the hook. People young and old will all enjoy this consistent action on the water!

The walleyes have returned to their normal summer haunts and can be targeted by long line trolling or over the vast flats in the area lakes and in the river channel, you can also target them by working selected structure with jigs or crank baits. The key to finding the walleyes now is to cover water and move until you locate the fish that you want to catch.

Action for bass has picked up dramatically now that the water temperatures have warmed up. We are now seeing water temperatures in the low to mid 50 degree range, and that has really provoked a feeding binge. Most of the action has been by tossing jigs tipped with plastics into shallow cover and rocks, but a few really aggressive fish have already started taking top water baits like Chug Bugs and poppers.

The catfish bite has been pretty good and although we have not seen any super tankers yet, we are catching some nice fish up to 30 inches long. Most of the action is coming while we are working very deep areas of the river with heavy jigs tipped with fathead minnows. Even though these fish are only averaging 18 to 24 inches long, let me tell you it s a battle you wont soon forget. These are very strong fish that absolutely don't want to give up!

The northern Wisconsin musky fishing season opens up this week north of Highway 10 so anglers looking to target them should get their gear ready for what looks to be another outstanding season. Early season locations to target muskies are shallow weeds and shoreline areas with abundant sun and or sun and rocks as these areas will warm up the fastest, and create likely locations for muskies to hold early in the season. Typical early season baits are small buck tails, twitch baits and undersized plastics.

More on fishing: Fishing news from around the state | Your fishing photos | Build a map | Read fishing reports

Have a great week.

Phil Schweik writes about his seasonal hunting and fishing patterns in Central Wisconsin along with tips and tactics on how to be successful while you are in the field or on the water.

Phil Schweik is a lifelong resident of Central Wisconsin who lives in Mosinee. Phil is a fishing and hunting guide for Hooksetters Guide Service and a professional musky tournament fisherman. He can be reached by checking out the Hooksetters’ website at

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