Bluegills lead this Wild Weekend Wanderings around Chicago outdoors.
BLUEGILL: Yes, bluegills and redears (above, ADD). Speaking of bluegills, in the several years of doing Fish of the Week, I don't think I have ever run a bluegill as FOTW or even had one sent in for FOTW. (Note Chris Clifford's catch in comments, ADD)
Bluegill rank among my three favorite fish--if you can guess the other two (one's easy, one's not), you're probably related to me.
For the holiday weekend, I think bluegills will be the best target. On most ponds and lakes, they are coming toward shore or already bedding. I don't think last night's chill should be enough to knock them too far back.
Bill Lanham sent the photo above from Mazonia. If I get time to play this weekend, I think it will be on some of the Mazonia lakes for myself. At the town pond, if my daughter or some of the boys want to go.
But, frankly, I don't think it will matter much. Bluegills are raring to go.
LAKEFRONT PERCH: Speaking of raring to go, perch started coming in pretty good over the weekend at Montrose. As of Thursday, the action was still pretty good there, the guys at Park Bait said. As always, it is a bit hit and miss, but the good shoreline run of perch should be setting up in time for the holiday weekend and we can hope hold through June.
Speaking of perch, remember the Richard J. Daley Fishing Tournament has perch and coho as the species for May. A 1.5-pound perch led the perch side the last I checked at Henry's. Fish can also be registered at Vet's and Park Bait.
LAKEFRONT SMALLMOUTH: Received some really nice reports and photos (including one released just short of the state record) around the full moon. I really thought this would be the spring when the state record would fall. Maybe this weekend. Smallmouth from shore are in various stages of spawning, so more of a variety of techniques may work. As much as I would like, I don't think I will get the chance this weekend.
ARCHERY: Chicago Bow Hunters, Inc. holds a 3D shoot this weekend in Bolingbrook.
WOODCHUCKS: On Tuesday, woodchuck hunting and trapping opens. Boy, that is something I haven't done since I was a kid. Not sure I will again either. As a kid, we lived on a rental house on a farm. And the farmer liked us taking out his groundhogs. Don't have the same push any more.
WILD ASPARAGUS: Haven't found any yet, though I was given a good spot by a faithful reader. This may be the weekend where I finally find some. Yes, obsessions can take me over.
PERSONAL PICKS: The oldest boy graduates Sunday, so that's the main aim of the weekend. But I will put in some tangential time looking for wild asparagus. And I hope maybe one morning at Mazonia. For Monday morning, I plan to hit Heidecke with Capt. John Mannerino.