Perch Fishing Techniques in Ontario

Perch fishing in Ontario

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Spring (Start of Season)
Jumbo perch are a sought after game fish for many anglers, mainly for their scrappy tenacity and wonderful table fare. Spring is the best time to find numbers, and size, of big perch in shallow water feeding up after a long winter. Shallow, weedy back bays, docks and marinas and stump fields will usually hold fish. Early season presentations consist of tiny spinners, small crankbaits and micro jigs suspended under floats. The livebait angler can also get in the game by using small minnows or worms either in conjunction with a float, or on a plain, long-shanked hook and split shot. Perch like to school up in the spring, so once you find some, you are bound to catch a bunch. They also like to school up in the same year classes - find the big perch and there should be a ton of his "brothers and sisters" around.

For the summer angler looking for perch, the usual docks and shoreline cover will consistently hold fish. This is not to say that you will find the biggest perch in these shallow spots, as jumbo perch prefer to head to deeper water during the "dog days" of summer. Look for the first major breakline out from productive shoreline areas, and any large weedbeds that fall within this area. Stumbling upon prime perch habitat like this is the answer to the puzzle. Keep in mind that really big perch have tremendous appetites - large baits may be the answer if all you are attracting is smaller fish with your downsized presentations.

Fall is the time when perch will flood the shallows in preparation of winter's arrival. Similar to spring, they will stage on shallow points, weedy back bays and around man-made structures such as bridge pilings and docks. Walking the shoreline of your favourite lake is a sure-fire method to connect with these hungry fish, and the use of an ultra-light outfit and small spinners or jigs will help you clean up. Wearing polarized fishing glasses will help you spot roaming fish, and keeping an eye out for surface action may give the perch's location away. Minnows seem to be more productive in the fall months as the preferred live bait for perch, but experimentation is always the key. The application of scent to your lures will come in handy as the cold water slowly zaps away the perch's activity levels.

Largemouth Bass

Smallmouth Bass

Musky (Maskinonge)



Northern Pike

Lake Trout

Rainbow Trout

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