Midlands area fishing report

Lake Greenwood: Crappie: Good. Guide Rod Wall reports that fish are being found in the creeks about 15-20 feet deep, and a foot or two off the bottom. Catfish: Fair. Captain Chris Simpson reports that a few channel catfish are being caught by drifting, but anchoring on the channel ledges is producing more fish right now. Striped and Largemouth Sportsmen's Friend reports that the only decent pattern is to target striper and largemouth bunched up together along with the white perch.

Lake Wateree: Crappie: Fair to good. Will Hinson of the Southern Crappie Tournament Trail reports that he is finding fish up the lake around Wateree Creek and Singleton Creek. Catfish: Slow to fair. Captain Rodger Taylor reports that large flocks of gulls and cormorants, both active and idle, can be seen in the area of stressed schools of small threadfin shad. Largemouth Bass: Slow. CATT owner Brett Collins reports that Wateree is known for being difficult in the winter, and the last few weeks have been no exception.

Lake Monticello: Catfish: Good. Captain Chris Simpson reports that shad are dying off and the catfish continue to feed well, although the bite is getting less consistent.

Lake Murray: Bream: Very good. Dooley's sports Show reports that the hot bite on Lake Murray continues to be for shellcracker. Crappie: Fair to good. Captain Brad Taylor reports than fish in the Little River area are staging at the mouths and making early preparations for moving shallow. Striped Bass: Fair. In the recent Midlands Striper Club tournament, catches were down. The shad die-off may have given striper all the easy prey they need for a while. Catfish: Fair. For blue catfish, fishing suspended bait just under the baitfish is most effective. Cut and live herring are the best baits. Largemouth Bass: Slow. In recent club and open tournaments "0s" have been very common, and sacks above five pounds have been very rare.

Lake Marion: Catfish: Fair to good. Captain Jim Glenn reports that the bite has gotten more sporadic, and he's having some very good days and then some slow days right behind them. This probably has a lot to do with the fish's metabolism, and by this stage of winter the cats are slowing down and eating less. And with stunned or dying shad around for a while now, many of the fish may have already gorged. Largemouth bass: Slow. Fish will stay shallow even in the cold as long as there is oxygen and bait. Bream: Slow. Captain David Hilton reports that bream have gone very deep and will be lethargic for the next month or two.