Published September 28, 2017 by the Central Office
View current conditions for Wisconsin State Parks, Trails and Forests
Check out the Wisconsin Department of Tourism (exit DNR).
For current statewide information on statewide fall color, log onto the Wisconsin Department of Tourism's Fall Color Report (exit DNR).
The warm weather of the past week may have slowed the early fast pace of fall colors coming on, but much of the state is at 25 to 50 percent fall color on the Wisconsin Department of Tourism's Fall Color Report (exit DNR) and some far northern areas are close to peak. Tamarack needles are turning yellow and soon to fall off. It is the only conifer in Wisconsin to shed its needles.
The warm weather made fishing difficult, the northern zone duck season opener hot and buggy and grouse hunting grueling. Boaters were happy to get another weekend of perfect weather in. The beach at Whitefish Dunes State Park was crowded on Saturday, an unusual occurrence for a Lake Michigan beach in late September. Hunters and fisherman alike look forward to cooler days ahead.
Anglers are still picking up decent numbers of perch and walleyes on Lake Winnebago. Some walleye and smallmouth were being caught in the Menominee River and anglers floating the Peshtigo River report catching good numbers of smallmouth bass and northern pike. A few salmon have been seen in the Peshtigo River.
Last weekend's unseasonably hot weather brought out more recreational boaters than anglers on Green Bay. Perch fishing out of Little Sturgeon Bay and Sawyer Harbor was good with many boats coming back with fish and a few even hit their limit.
Chinook are just starting to move into the Sturgeon Bay shipping canal for the fall run. Some were seen jumping on the east end of the canal as they make their way to Strawberry Creek.
Along Lake Michigan, anglers at Kewaunee experienced the first taste of the salmon run this season thanks to a drastic drop in lake temperature two weekends ago that sent a good push of chinooks upstream. Action was intense at the start of the week although the fresh, hard-fighting chinook didn't let anglers land them easily. A few chinook salmon were caught on the Sheboygan River but none were caught this week on the Root or Pike rivers but shore anglers at Racine did very well last weekend in the harbor and a few anglers had some luck casting and trolling in the Kenosha harbor and in front of the Pike River.
Opening weekend of the Northern Zone Waterfowl season was slow due to the heat. The southern duck opener is this weekend and many ducks are still prevalent including wood ducks, teal, mallards, and mergansers.
Bachelor groups of bucks have been observed by archery hunters who braved lasts week's heat and mosquitoes. Due to the hot temperatures elk bulls haven't been bugling much but may start up again as temperatures are dropping and depending on how much competition there is with other bulls.
Regulations recently changed in regards to tagging deer and turkey--the requirement to validate and attach a tag has been eliminated, but hunters must still register their harvest as data is still needed to manage populations.
American painted lady butterflies are being seen along with some monarchs. Purple asters and goldenrod are still blooming.
This week DNR biologists confirmed a single cougar was captured on two separate trail cameras in Clark and Marathon counties.
Fall color festivals and events kick off this weekend with Art in the Park at Copper Falls State Park and fall festivals at Governor Thompson and Roche-A-Cri. Bikers will be out in force taking in the Fall Color Festival Bike Rides on the Kettle Moraine State Forest-Southern Unit's renowned John Muir Trails. Celebrate National Public Lands Day on Saturday at the Horicon Marsh State Wildlife Area and lend a helping hand collecting native prairie seed. And don't forget SturgeonFest at Lakeshore State Park in Milwaukee will give you a chance to release live sturgeon. For all programs, search the DNR website for Get Outdoors.
Plenty of news in the birding world this week. Most notable early on were two warm-weather rarities, the state's fourth-ever magnificent frigatebird in Marathon County on Sept. 22 (http://bit.ly/2wZPdKA) and eighth Say's phoebe in Bayfield a day later. Tuesday's cold front brought northwest winds and many southbound birds on Wednesday and Thursday. Other rarities found at this time included black-backed woodpecker in Bayfield, Swainson's hawk in Ozaukee, Franklin's gulls in Dunn, and a northern mockingbird in Dane.
But it's the short-distance migrants that are taking center stage statewide. American robins, rusty blackbirds, and both kinglet species are on the increase, while now is peak time for yellow-bellied sapsuckers, northern flickers, and cedar waxwings. Look for winter wrens, brown creepers, and hermit thrushes amid declining numbers of house wrens, Swainson's and gray-cheeked thrushes. Notice more blue jays around lately? Migratory populations from the Canadian breeding population have moved in over the past couple weeks. Open fields, weedy roadside edges, and shorelines are now hosting horned larks, Lapland longspurs, and American pipits from the arctic as well.
Now is a good time to get your ground seed out (e.g. black oil sunflower, white millet, and/or cracked corn) for migrating sparrows, especially white-throated, white-crowned, fox, dark-eyed junco, eastern towhee, and others. Wet weedy fields are hosting savannah, swamp, Lincoln's, and a few bobolinks yet in the south. Yellow-rumped and palm warblers dominate now, though small numbers of other warbler species remain, with 15-plus species found in the south yet. Some hummingbirds remain in the south as well, while nearly all have departed the north. Impressive roosts of chimney swifts were recorded on the Sept. 27, including 1,400 in Dane and 1,700 in Ozaukee. Pine siskins remain plentiful across the north woods. Geese are moving in numbers (Friday Sept. 29 could be especially good), sandhill cranes have begun staging in some areas, and a few ruffed grouse were heard drumming as is typical of this time of year. Raptor migration has been good, featuring the last of the broad-winged hawks, peak sharp-shinned hawk flights, some merlins and peregrine falcons, and a mixed bag of others. Find out what's being seen and report your finds at http://www.ebird.org/wi. Good birding. - Ryan Brady, Bureau of Wildlife Management research scientist, Ashland
Sunday, October 1
Sept. 30 & Oct. 1
Friday, Sept. 29 9 a.m. to noon - The Friends of Cherokee Marsh http://Cherokeemarsh.org are continuing a project to stop the spread of phragmites (giant reed grass) that is threatening the populations of diverse native sedges, grasses, and flowers in the Cherokee Marsh State Natural Area.
Check the State Natural Areas Volunteer Program page of the DNR website for details. - Jared Urban, conservation biologist, Dane. - Jared Urban, conservation biologist, Dane
Ashland DNR Service Center area
Iron County - The fall colors may have peaked in the northern portion of Iron County. The southern portion is close to peak color. The warm weather made fishing difficult, duck season opener hot and buggy, and grouse hunting grueling. Boaters were happy to get another weekend of perfect weather in. Hunters and fisherman alike look forward to cooler days ahead. Little bow hunting has begun in Iron County. Grouse hunters are saying that they aren't seeing a lot of birds this year while turkey numbers are soaring. - Jenna Kosnicki, wildlife biologist, Mercer
Copper Falls State Park - Experience peak fall colors at Copper Falls State Park this Saturday during Art in the Park. Hike the signature Doughboy's waterfall trail with history and geology expert Kent Goeckermann at 1 p.m. Check out art exhibits from local artists and crafters. Wood carving demonstration during the event. Waterfalling in Wisconsin author will also be on hand for book signing/sales. Kids can check out the naturalist cabin with cool pelts and tracks along with other fun nature activities. T-shirt stamping and pumpkin carving available (while supplies last). Refreshments available at the Concession Building. Free admission -- no park sticker required on this day. Followed at 7:30 p.m. by "Universe in the Park" program.
Amnicon & Pattison Falls state parks - Fall colors are at 65-70 percent. The Pattison weather station recorded 4.13 inches of rain so far in September. Both parks have selfie stands from Travel Wisconsin, encouraging visitors to take photos and share them on Travel Wisconsin website. Two volunteers from Wausau came out and volunteered for 20 days at Pattison State Park, improving the Beaver Trail on the east side of Interfalls Lake. We greatly appreciate their dedicated service to our park. The new contact station at Amnicon Falls is nearing completion and should be operational by mid-October. Along with this project, the new entry into Amnicon Fall is well underway. We ask for our visitor's patience while are constructing. The Friends of Pattison and Amnicon Falls State Parks will be hosting a Colorama event at Pattison on Sunday, Oct. 8 from 1 to 4 p.m. They will be making fresh pressed apple cider, doing crafts, and making cobbler in Dutch ovens. The public is invited and encouraged to attend. The local Scouts will be assisting. - Kevin Feind, property supervisor
Park Falls DNR Service Center area
Flambeau River State Forest - Fishermen have been fishing the Flambeau River for musky, walleye, northern pike and bass with some success. Folks are really enjoying the river experience. The water levels are normal to a little higher for this time of year due to the precipitation we have been receiving. White berries on the red osier dogwood are ripening. Purple asters are blooming. Most of the hummingbirds have migrated or are migrating. Painted Lady butterflies are being seen and some monarchs. Snakes are on the move. The heavy apple trees are dropping fruit. Forest canopies are losing leaves and colors are muted. The under laying brush in the forest is becoming less prominent. The forest is past prime for color. Acorns and hickories are dropping. Ripe hawthorn fruits are being eaten by birds and other wildlife. Tamarack needles are turning yellow and soon to fall off. They are the only conifer in Wisconsin to shed their needles. The deer and elk have been busy grazing. Due to the hot temperatures elk bulls haven't been bugling much but may start up again as temperatures are dropping and depending on how much competition there is with other bulls. The bulls are with cows. The weather forecast for the remainder of this week, calls for Friday to be partly sunny with a high of 56 and a low of 37. Saturday, patchy fog, turning sunny with a high of 62 and low of 47. Sunday, mostly cloudy with a chance of showers, high of 64 and low of 51. There is heavy equipment working on the Flambeau Forest ATV/UTV Trail now, so use caution. - Diane Stowell, forestry technician advanced and visitor services associate
Woodruff DNR Service Center area
Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest - The fall color seems to be hit or miss on the forest. Some trees are bare at the top and still green at the bottom. There is a lot of browning of the leaves also before they turn their full color leading to the hit or miss statement. Most ferns have turned brown and the grasses and cattails are fully ripened. Asters and goldenrod still dot the countryside with color, and the past warm weather brought out some late Monarchs and American lady butterflies to feed on the asters. It is a quiet time on area trails making any hike a peaceful one. - Rosalie Richter, visitor services associate
Northern Lake Michigan fisheries team report
This report is for the week of Sept. 17-23. Extremely hot and humid weather this past week brought out many pleasure boaters, kayakers, and float tube enthusiasts.
Marinette County - Anglers floating the Peshtigo River report catching goodly numbers of smallmouth bass and northern pike casting cranks and plastics to structure and current breaks. Perch anglers are having some success fishing the lower part of the river using minnows and crawler chunks. A few salmon have been seen in the Peshtigo River. Perch anglers out of Little River are having success fishing in and around the weed beds using crawler chunks and minnows, lots of small fish being reported. Perch are also being caught at Red Arrow Beach using the same techniques. Some walleye and smallmouth were being caught in the Menominee River mainly from Stephenson Island up to the dam at Hattie Street. A variety of presentations are being used. King salmon have been observed jumping at the Hattie Street Dam. - Kevin King, fisheries technician, Peshtigo
Oconto County - Bluegill and crappie still top the list that fishermen are after below the dam at Stiles on the Oconto River, live bait is working the best. Anglers floating the Oconto River report catching good numbers of smallmouth bass using small crank baits and plastics. Walleye anglers fishing from the Pensaukee River mouth to Oconto Park II report having success in about 15 feet of water trolling with large cranks and crawler/harness. The perch bite has been decent at times with most fish being caught early morning using minnows or crawler chunks, staying mobile has been the rule. A few pink salmon and kings have been observed below the dam at Stiles. - Kevin King, fisheries technician, Peshtigo
Genoa Beach anglers reported targeting mostly musky with little luck. Some said they were saw one or two fish, but were unable to reel any in. Some (3-5) walleyes were also caught by a few anglers with freshwater drum, gobies, and white bass as well. The parking lot had much less trailers as normal, averaging around 10 throughout the week and weekend. - Kara Winter, fisheries technician, Green Bay
Brown County - Over this past week walleye fishing hasn't been overwhelmingly successful but it has been consistent. Most boats were harvesting two to five fish for half a day worth of fishing and throwing back a couple fish that were short. They were also catching freshwater drum, white perch, and catfish. Yellow perch anglers were having trouble locating fish but when they did they were putting at least 10 per boat in the cooler. Most fish measured were 9-11 inches with a few that broke 13 inches. Anglers using night crawlers were catching far more round goby's than those that were using minnows. During the week the parking lot was about a third full and almost full on the weekend - Adam Garlie, fisheries technician, Green Bay
At the Metro Launch anglers reported targeting walleye and caught approximately six fish for a half day out. Last weekend's unseasonably hot weather brought out more recreational boaters than anglers, though the anglers who were out had fairly consistent luck. Boat anglers out of Suamico were targeting walleye and musky with little luck. Anglers after musky reported not having any luck, while walleye anglers reported bringing in two to four fish per trip. Again, the warm weather over the weekend brought out more recreational boaters than anglers with around 45 trailers in the lot. - Kara Winter, fisheries technician, Green Bay
Door County - Chinook can be seen jumping on the east end of the canal as they make their way to Strawberry Creek. Anglers have been trolling the canal with crankbaits and spoons with limited success, one fish per boat or less. The same can be said for pier and shore fishermen. The hot weather and warm water temps are likely to blame for the salmon's lack of appetite. A few boats traveling out to 400-500 feet of water in search of immature salmon and rainbows have had a little success but warm water and winds out of the south have not helped. In the canal a few anglers are still finding perch but action seems to be slowing down. Early morning is best. Walleye fishermen have had some success trolling flicker minnows and jigging on Larson's Reef and other offshore structure. Most activity at the boat ramps over the weekend was from pleasure boaters taking advantage of the unseasonably warm weather. A few smallmouth bass have been caught from the piers at Murphy Park, Egg Harbor and Ephraim but action seems to be slowing down. Bass fishermen getting out to the Strawberry Islands and Washington Island have been doing well when the wind permits. Casting the weeds in Fish Creek with crankbaits has been productive for northern pike. Chinook are just starting to move in for the fall run. Action in Baileys Harbor and Fish Creek as well as other area streams will pick up as we head into October. - Benjamin Thome, fisheries technician, Sturgeon Bay
Anglers on the hunt for walleye weren't doing so hot over the past week out of Chaudoir's Dock. About every other boat came back with a few fish for the cooler. While they were out they also caught a nice variety of other fish like, freshwater drum, catfish, white bass, white perch and few whitefish. No perch anglers were interviewed. During the week at Little Sturgeon Bay the mix was mostly walleye and perch anglers but with the uncharacteristically warm weather pleasure boaters and bass fishermen snuck out on the water. The walleye anglers didn't do too well and only a few boats brought back any fish at all. Perch anglers on the other hand did alright. There were a few boats that came back empty but the majority of those out fishing for perch took home 7-15 fish. During the weekend bass anglers caught less than a handful of fish for half a day on the water. At Sawyer Harbor there was a blend of anglers and pleasure boaters out on the water. A few went fishing for walleye and all but one came back with empty live wells. Perch anglers on the other hand were surprisingly consistent with their catch. Most boats were harvesting over 15 fish and a few even hit their limit. Some fish were measured and had lengths from 8-11 inches. A few bass anglers were also out and all of them averaged less than 10 fish for half a day out on the water. While out anglers also caught a few gobies as well as a few nice northern pike. The parking lot averaged around 8 trailers in it during the week and 15 during the weekend. - Adam Garlie, fisheries technician, Green Bay
Kewaunee County - Kewaunee experienced its first taste of the salmon run this season thanks to a drastic drop in lake temperature two weekends ago that sent a good push of chinooks upstream. Action was intense at the start of the week as dozens of fish made their way up to the pools around the Bruemmer Park area. Anglers were managing to nearly fill their limit, although the fresh, hard-fighting chinooks didn't let anglers land them easily. Salmon egg flies or other yarn flies and artificials were the lure of choice over natural spawn, as it seemed the light presentation gave anglers more control over the placement of their bait. As the week went on, fishing slowed as fast as the temperature rose, although there was still lots of angler pressure on the river by the weekend, and a handful of sluggish chinooks could still be caught with enough patience and perseverance. Unfortunately, the rest of the fishing in Kewaunee wasn't nearly as good, as pier anglers spent hours of casting for no fish on most days, as well as those fishing from shore around the breakwall and harbor area. No fish were recorded on any shifts this week, although many could be seen jumping in the harbor area. Anglers taking boats out onto the big lake struggled similarly, as most boats came in with nothing to show. Most anglers have been targeting the deeper water again looking for younger chinooks and rainbows, but no pattern was reported. Water temps were reported to be back in the 60s at the surface, but below 50 degrees 50 feet below the surface.
Algoma had another slow week of fishing and even saw a decrease in the amount of anglers trying their luck. The piers had the most pressure by far, but only a handful of chinook were recorded. Many anglers reported fishing for hours only to see a few fish jump and maybe one caught. A couple of northern pike were also caught on spoons. No successful anglers came in from fishing out on Lake Michigan, and most anglers have headed back to deeper water (400-plus feet) after lake temperatures rose in response to the easterly winds. The Ahnapee River received next to no fishing pressure, and the only anglers interviewed were perch fishing at Olson Park, with limited success. Some anglers have managed to hook up with chinook near the mouth of Stony Creek, but the low water flow has made it a challenge for fish to find their way up into it. Some anglers have reported watching chinook unsuccessfully try to make their way over the rocks into the creek. With cooler temperatures in the forecast toward the end of this week, anglers are hoping to see some response from the fish that gives them some more opportunities to get some action. - Jacob Steckmesser, fisheries technician, Sturgeon Bay
Peshtigo DNR Service Center area
Marinette County - After several days in the upper 80s cool weather looks like it might be settling in. There were a lot of people fishing, tubing, and skiing on area rivers and flowages over the weekend. A few hunters suffered through the heat and were able to harvest deer and ducks, but pressure was definitely light. Fall colors have not been too impressive yet, but that may change with the cooler temps. Youth gun deer season is about a week and a half away now. This weekend would be a great time to scout for spots and prepare for the hunt--maybe even do a little squirrel hunting while looking for deer sign. Keep the future generation of hunters interested and engaged. Regulations have recently changed in regards to tagging deer and turkey--be sure you are aware of all the laws before heading afield. The newest change eliminates the requirement to validate and attach a tag, but you must still register your animal as harvest data is still needed to manage the population. Enjoy the onset of fall by hiking some of the recently mowed trails on the Peshtigo Harbor Wildlife Area. There is a lot of public land in Marinette county to enjoy including state owned lands, county lands, and privately owned lands that are open to the public through the Managed Forest Law (MFL) program. If you are interested in exploring one of the MFL properties, check out the DNR web page and search keyword MFL Open Land. This will take you to a mapping application to see what is available near you. - Aaron McCullough, wildlife technician, Wausaukee
Oconto County - Southern duck opener is this weekend and many ducks are still prevalent. I have seen wood ducks, teal, mallards, and mergansers being shot. Oconto River and Christie Lake have gave success to all hunters I had checked. Fall colors have slowed a bit but the cooler weather we are getting may speed things up. Sandhill, geese, and Knighthawks have been seen starting to migrate. I still see frogs and snakes out. Plenty of monarch butterflies around and walnuts, hickory nuts, and acorns are starting to fall. - Paul Hartrick, conservation warden, Oconto Falls
Sturgeon Bay DNR Service Center area
Potawatomi State Park - All trails are open. The most popular trail to hike is the Tower Trail (3.6 mile loop) which also includes a section of the Ice Age Trail. Bald eagles, great blue herons, common mergansers and buffleheads have been seen flying over Sawyer Harbor. A turtle was spotted laying eggs along the rocky shoreline. The trees are starting to change color with a lot of yellows and oranges so far. On Saturday, Oct. 7, all park roads will be closed to traffic by 9:15 a.m. for Run Wild 2017. Most roads will remain closed until approximately 11 a.m. - Jaclyn Moeri, visitor services associate
Whitefish Dunes State Park - The leaves are starting the change and a great time to walk the park trails. Warm weather brought out large crowds to the beach on Sept. 23. A few fawns have been spotted in the park. A great place to see flickers is out on the Yellow Trail. Thimbleberries are ripe in the park but be careful not to wonder too far into poison ivy. - Jaclyn Moeri, visitor services associate
Wautoma DNR Service Center area
Waupaca County - Pretty green in Waushara and Marquette Counties, better than 50 percent colors in Waupaca and Portage. Beastly heat now gone, it really put damper on outdoor activities last weekend. Deer movement really shut down last week, should improve with cool temps. Insects currently a non-issue. Waterfowl currently in the "tweener" time, local birds well educated in how to where to avoid hunters. Given the record heat, migrant ducks have not migrated in yet. Migrant woodcock also not in yet. - Karl Kramer, wildlife technician, Wautoma
Oshkosh DNR Service Center area
Winnebago County - Fall Colors are beginning to appear as the temperatures drop back into the 40s and 50s at night. Oak trees are rapidly dropping acorns creating a feast for deer, squirrels and other wildlife. Bachelor groups of bucks have been observed by archery hunters who braved lasts weeks heat and mosquitoes. Goose numbers have been steady with many groups of hunters limiting out. Opening weekend of the Northern Zone Waterfowl season was slow due to the heat but ducks have slowly been trickling into the area. Anglers are still picking up decent numbers of perch and walleyes on Lake Winnebago. This upcoming weekend would be a great time to get out for a hike at one of our local state trails or at High Cliff State Park to enjoy all that fall has to offer. - Christopher Shea, conservation warden, Oshkosh
Milwaukee DNR Service Center area
Kettle Moraine State Forest, Northern Unit - All forest trails are open and in good condition, including the Tamarack Trail around Mauthe Lake. A recent law change now allows firearm hunting in the Zillmer Trail area. - Deb Harder, visitor services associate
Lakeshore State Park - SturgeonFest with the RiverEdge Nature Center will be held at the park this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Join RiverEdge Nature Center and DNR staff for a sturgeon filled festival. Pre-sponsor a sturgeon at Sturgeonfest.org to release your own, come early for a water blessing ceremony. Festival is free for all ages, cost of sponsoring a sturgeon to release is $10. Meet at the north entrance (just south of Discovery World). Free parking is available at the park's south entrance road (access from Erie St.). It is about a 15-minute walk from the south entrance, but on the way you can take in the lovely views of the prairies throughout the park! Paid parking is available at the north entrance at O'Donnell Park. - Thomas Kroeger, parks and recreation specialist, Milwaukee
Southern Lake Michigan fisheries team report - Compiled from creel clerks by Cheryl Masterson and Jeffrey Zinuticz, fisheries technicians, Milwaukee
Sheboygan County - Fishing pressure was low at the beginning of the week due to windy weather conditions; however, more boaters and anglers were present over the weekend. Success was limited with neither boaters nor anglers reporting much success. Two chinook salmon were caught on the Sheboygan River on spoons. The water temperature ranged from 65 degrees during the week to 69 degrees by the weekend. Pigeon River water temperature ranged from 65-66 degrees. There were only four chinook salmon and one small rainbow trout caught off of the south pier this week. The chinook salmon weighed on average about 6 pounds. Most anglers were using spoons, although the rainbow trout was caught on a worm. The surface temperature of the water was 54 degrees. Boaters this week reported catches of coho salmon. in 25-40 feet of water on flasher flies and spoons.
Ozaukee County - Fishing pressure was low and little success was reported from both boaters and anglers. No catches were reported off of the piers, shoreline, or utility area this week. Most anglers were fishing with spawn sacs. The surface temperature of the water ranged from 65-68 degrees. Success off the boats was limited this week to only a couple reported catches of coho salmon, one brown trout, and one lake trout. Catches were reportedly made in water depths ranging from 20-220 feet on spoons and j-plugs.
Racine County - Most anglers trolled or cast inside the harbor or out in front of the harbor catching zero to four fish. Glow spoons and crankbaits worked the best before sunrise. Most of the fish caught were king salmon, but a few coho and brown trout were caught as well. Pier anglers did very good over the weekend with around 30 fish caught each day. Most of the fish caught were king salmon, but a few coho salmon and brown trout were caught as well. A majority of the fish were caught on skein; however, before sunrise the lures that worked the best were glow spoons and crankbaits. The water temperature was 67 degrees. Shore anglers also did very well this weekend by the yellow 5 sign in the harbor and along the rocks. All the fish reported caught were caught on skein under a bobber and they were all king salmon. Anglers set their bobber at about 1-2 feet off the bottom. The water temperature was 68 degrees. The Root River was flowing at 5.90 cfs. The water is very low and very clear. Only a few anglers were fishing this week. Upstream of The Steelhead Facility, only a couple of anglers fished this week and none reported catching any fish. Only a few anglers fished downstream of the facility this week and none reported catching any fish. - Dominic Cavalieri, fisheries technician, Sturtevant
Kenosha County - A few anglers had some luck casting and trolling in front of the harbor and in front of the Pike River. The lures that worked the best were glow spoons and crankbaits. Anglers reported catching between zero and three fish. All of the fish caught were king salmon. No pier anglers reported catching any fish this week. A few fish were caught from shore each day in the harbor and a couple off of the beach as well. Before sunrise anglers caught a few king salmon on glow spoons and crankbaits. After sunrise no fish were caught off the beach, but a few kings were caught in the harbor on skein under a bobber set near the bottom. The water temperature was 67 degrees. No anglers were fishing the Pike River this week. The mouth of the river was barely open. - Dominic Cavalieri, fisheries technician, Sturtevant
Lower Wisconsin State Riverway - Weekly Video Report The river is just about normal flow for this time of year at the Town of Eagle boat landing, Richland County. Looks like a nice stretch of weather will last through the weekend. Fall turkey and deer hunting maps are available on the DNR website for the riverway. - Mark Cupp, executive director Lower Wisconsin State Riverway Board
Horicon DNR Service Center area
Horicon Marsh State Wildlife Area - The recent north winds have brought in more migrating waterbirds. Canada goose, sandhill crane, blue and green-winged teal numbers are all increasing. You can check out the latest numbers from the USFWS waterbird count here [PDF - exit DNR]. Duck hunting opens in the southern zone this weekend and hunters are excited for the prospects at Horicon Marsh. Cooler weather and less mosquitos should make for a great experience! The last of the fall warblers are moving through the area with yellow-rumped and palm warblers being seen in larger numbers. Freshly hatched snapping turtles are still making their way to water and salamanders were seen migrating to wetland areas after last week's rain. Celebrate National Public Lands Day on Saturday, Sept. 30 by visiting the Horicon Marsh State Wildlife Area and lend a helping hand. Native prairie seeds will be collected from 9 a.m. - noon at the Horicon Marsh Education and Visitor Center that day. Save some time to go and visit the new interactive exhibits called the Explorium and learn more about this amazing state wildlife area! - Elizabeth Herzmann, natural resources educator
La Crosse DNR Service Center area
Vernon County - Early fall is a great time to observe butterflies and moths. These insects are often thought of as summer insects, and while often not as numerous in the fall, many adult moths and butterflies remain active into October. Deep yellow euchlaena moths, giant swallowtails, goldenrod stowaways, painted ladies, common buckeyes, red admirals, and rosy maple moths are examples that may be observed in Wisconsin. Field guides and websites provide identification assistance and natural history information. - Dave Matheys, wildlife biologist, Viroqua
Black River Falls DNR Service Center area
Black River State Forest - This is a great time of year to visit the state forest; temperatures are cooler, birds are migrating through on their way to winter grounds and leaves are changing color. We are currently at about 30-40 percent color in the forest. Peak color in the Black River area is usually around the first or second week in October. Temperatures this weekend are supposed to be a lot cooler than this past weekend. Highs are expected to be in the mid-60s with night time lows in the 40s. All ATV trails are now open. - Emily Alf, visitor services associate
Eau Claire DNR Service Center area
Lake Wissota State Park - The fall colors are showing with the ash, birch and basswood trees turning to brilliant gold. The maples are beginning to show color with the nights being cool. The open water game fish action has been good. Bass action on leeches and small minnows has been productive; walleye action has been good with live baits. Pan fish have been fairly active. Species of birds seen or heard include: ravens, rose-breasted grosbeaks, loons, a variety of wrens, phoebes, turkey vultures, northern juncos, pileated woodpeckers, great horned and barred owls, osprey, bald eagles, Canada geese and belted kingfishers. The park dump station is open. The left loop camp showers are now closed. As the park office is not regularly staffed at this time of year, please use the self-registration station located at the office entrance. - Dave Hladilek, park manager
Wisconsin Rapids DNR Service Center area
Buckhorn State Park - Sites 8, 9, 16, 26-29, A1-A8, B1-B3 are reservable through Oct. 1. All other backpack sites are non-reservable, first-come at this time. Sites will start closing on Oct. 4. The new campground is reservable through Oct. 15 for the north loop and Nov. 1 for the south loop. - Heather Wolf, park manager
Roche-A-Cri State Park - The campground will be closed Oct. 1. - Heather Wolf, park manager