Fishing Report

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Fishing Report

DNR Fishing Report – May 24

May 17, 2012 Comments (0) Fishing Report

DNR Fishing Report – May 17


Nelson Park Lake

Fishing for bluegill has been very good with 9 to 10-inch bluegill being caught from the dam.


Crawford Creek Impoundment

Crappie fishing has been very good.  Bluegills are being caught, but not as many as crappie.  Anglers report nice sizes of panfish.  Most of the fishing activity has been taking place off the face of the dam.


Moorhead Park Pond

Moorhead Pond was renovated in 2009 and restocked.  The panfish are now at a size worth keeping.  Fishing for bluegill, crappie, and bass has been good.  Most of the bass are a sub-legal size, though.


Brushy Creek Lake

Fishing continues to be good for all species.  Crappie fishing has been excellent with anglers catching limits of 8 to 10-inch crappie around the brush piles.


Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)

Walleye fishing has been slow this week.  Crappie – Fair: Fish the marina for crappie.  Walleye – Slow: Walleye fishing has slowed down since last week.  Shore anglers are still picking up a few with minnows.  Boat anglers report marking a lot of fish around the dredge cuts, but unable to get anything to bite. Boaters should use caution on Storm Lake.  The hydraulic dredge is in operation in the east basin of the lake.  There is a pipeline running from the dredge to the shoreline and may rise to the surface at times.


Swan Lake

Anglers are still catching some bluegill and crappie from shore along the south portion of the lake off the fishing jetties.  Anglers have been doing well from the fish house.  Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill are around 7.5 to 8 inches.  Crappie – Good: Crappie are around nine inches.


Black Hawk Lake

Fishing continues to be good.  Bullhead – Good: Bullheads can be caught on nightcrawlers or leeches.  The bullheads are mostly between 10 and 11 inches and are abundant.  Channel Catfish – Good: Channel catfish are still being caught close to shore.  Try using leeches, minnows, or cut bait.  Some are being caught on twisters while fishing for walleye.  Crappie – Good: Anglers have been doing well for crappie in the Town Bay area of the lake.  Fish along shore at Ice House Point, or from the handicapped accessible dock or the west stone pier.  Walleye – Fair: Some legal walleye are being caught from shore.  Try Ice House Point or the east shore.  Recent surveys show a good number of walleye off the ends of the docks from the north shore access area.  Walleye must be at least 15 inches to keep and anglers are allowed three per day.  Yellow Bass – Good: Anglers are still catching good numbers of yellows and many of them are over 10 inches.  Cast a small bright colored lure close to shore where the wind is blowing in.  The east shore north of the outlet is a good place to fish with a west wind. Water temperature is in the high 60s.  Water clarity is around 20 inches.


Black Hawk District Farm Ponds

Bluegills are starting to nest at farm ponds around the area.  Bluegills are very aggressive when guarding the nest and can be caught easily.  Look for shallow areas of ponds where the bluegill are nesting.


For more information, contact Ben Wallace or Don Herrig at the Black Hawk District Office in Lake View at 712-657-2638.


Beeds Lake

Crappies 7 to 9 inches are biting on minnows and jigs.  Target these fish in the shallows and near the causeway.


Lower Pine Lake

Bluegill and crappie are biting on wax worms.  Anglers are catching largemouth bass with crawlers and spinner baits.


Upper Pine Lake

Bluegill and crappie are being picked up using wax worms.  Anglers are catching largemouth bass with crawlers and spinner baits.


Lake Smith

Anglers are catching bluegill and crappie using small tube jigs and jigs tipped with bait.   Largemouth bass are also biting on spinners and crankbaits.


Lake Catherine

Anglers are catching 2 to 3-pound channel catfish using dead minnows.


Clear Lake

Crappie – Fair: Some crappies are being picked up by anglers using minnows.  Anticipate crappie fishing to improve throughout the week with warming water temperatures.  Look for spawning crappies to show up in the rushes near shore and in the rocks along the jetties.  Fish these areas with small tube jigs and jigs tipped with bait.  Walleye – Good: Walleye are biting on minnows, crawlers, and crankbaits fished over rock reefs, around the island, and near steep contours in the little lake.  A large number of walleye under the 14-inch minimum length limit and a fair number of fish over 14 inches are being caught.  Yellow Bass – Good: Yellow bass are midway through spawning.  Use jigs tipped with small minnows, cut bait, or a piece of crawler in shallow, rocky areas – such as near the island, the outlet, Farmer’s Beach, and Dodge’s Point.  Anglers are having the best success using either small hair jigs or twister tail soft plastics on a jig fished in 2 to 5 feet of water near the island from  just before sunrise to around 8 a.m. Water temperature in the main lake is in the mid 60s.  Water clarity is high, fishing in general will be best in deeper water with low-light conditions.


Lake Cornelia

Crappies 7-8 inches are biting.  Some walleyes over 14 inches and catfish are being caught on live bait.


Little Wall Lake

Crappie and bluegill fishing is good.  Crappies have moved into shallow areas of the lake along the rocks to spawn.  Target these fish in near-shore areas with small tube jigs or jigs tipped with bait.


Crystal Lake

Bluegills are on spawning beds in the shallows and along the edges of weed beds.  Fish these areas with a small tube jig or jigs tipped with bait.  Anglers are also catching 8 to 16-inch largemouth bass using spinners and crankbaits.


Winnebago River

Anglers are catching northern pike using artificial baits.


For more fishing information in the north central area contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.


Big Spirit Lake

Bluegills and crappies are moving into spawning areas.  Bullhead – Good: There were lots of bullheads being caught off the north grade as well as a few at Templar Park.  Most were coming on worms but minnows and leaches also caught a few.  Northern Pike – Fair: Try using spoons, and spinner baits around vegetation.  Some pike are being caught trolling crankbaits for walleye in around 10 feet of water.  White Bass – Fair: Locating an active school of white bass is the hard part once found something resembling a minnow should get good results.  Smallmouth Bass – Slow: Most smallmouth bass have are being caught off rock piles.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: look for green weeds and bass should be nearby try using a slow presentation and long casts.  Yellow Perch – Slow: Fishing has been slow but a few are being caught while fishing for walleye.   Walleye – Fair:  Leaches and night crawlers seemed to be the choice bait by most fishermen with minnows bringing some success as well.  Trolling crankbaits in 10-20 feet of water has been another good tactic.


East Okoboji Lake

Musky season is closed.  Bullhead – Fair: Try using worms on bottom.  Walleye – Fair: Try fishing near bottom with crawlers and leaches or trolling crank baits.  Twister tails can also be productive.  Yellow Bass – Good: Many yellow bass are being caught try looking for rocks and wood and use small baits.


West Okoboji Lake

Musky season is closed.  The canals seem to be where the most action is taking place with bluegills and largemouth bass gaining the most attention but many of the fish are small.      Smallmouth Bass – Slow: A few smallies have been caught off rock piles but with the clear water most fish are spooky.  Walleye – Fair: A few fish were caught trolling crankbaits as well as live bait rigs with crawlers and leaches.


Lost Island Lake

Walleye – Fair: Fishing is picking up as the water has reached the mid 60s.  Try drifting live bait either on a jig or a rig with live bait.  A few good sized yellow bass may also be picked up with these methods.


A reminder to bow fishermen please dispose of your fish properly and it is unlawful to sell fish.  For more information on fishing in northwest Iowa, call the Spirit Lake Fish Hatchery at 712-336-1840.



Volga Lake

Bluegill – Fair: Anglers are beginning to see a few bluegills in their catch.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers have been finding nice sized fish in shallow water.  Crappie – Good: Crappies fishing along the rocks has been good using jigs with twistertails, wax worms or angleworms.


Lake Hendricks

Channel Catfish – No Report:   Bluegill – Good:   Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers are throwing out a wide variety of lures with some success.  Crappie – Good: Crappies are being caught in the old creek channel and along the weed lines.  Try using small, dark jigs.  Chartreuse colored jigs are also working.


Lake Meyer

Water clarity is excellent and temperature is 64 degrees.  Action continues to be hit or miss for crappies and largemouth.  Northern Pike – No Report:   Bluegill – Slow: Small bluegill are being caught.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try angling with a rubber skirted jig for bass on beds.  Crappie – Good: Crappies are hitting minnows this week.  Anglers should try fishing around rocky or woody structure.


Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)

The Upper Iowa River is coming down but is still really muddy after rains earlier in the week.   Walleye – Slow:


Upper Iowa River (below Decorah)

The Upper Iowa River is coming down but is still really muddy after rains earlier in the week.  A variety of fish including sauger, perch and rock bass are showing up in the creel this week.  Walleye – Slow: Anglers are using jigs tipped with worms, natural colored twistertails or ringworms.


Cedar River (above Nashua)

River is looking good this week.  Northern Pike – No Report:   Channel Catfish – Good: Stink bait, dead chubs and a few are still hitting on worms.  Smallmouth Bass – Slow:   Walleye – Good: Minnows or bright colored plastic lures.


Decorah District Streams

There have been March Brown hatches on northeast Iowa streams during the past week (sometimes early in the afternoon) with spinners falling at dusk.  A #12 or #14 Adams or other large mayfly pattern works well for surface rises or for bringing trout to the surface.  Riffle stretches are good March Brown water.  Blue Wing Olive, caddis and midge hatches remain heavy at times.


Rivers and streams are in good condition this week.  Trout fishing is excellent with large numbers of insect hatches occurring.   Please contact the Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324 for more information.




Mississippi River Pool 12

Water clarity is slightly stained to clear.  Water level at Lock and Dam is going to start dropping slowly.  Water level in Dubuque by Lock and Dam is at 10.6 feet on May 17.  Water temperature is around 60 degrees.  Channel Catfish – Good: Cut bait usually taken from suckers seems to be the bait of choice.  Largemouth Bass – Good: Anglers are reporting catching decent numbers of largemouth bass off the rock piles and current eddy’s in the tail waters and tree falls in the side channels.  Freshwater Drum – Good: Egg sinker and worm rig along sand bars has been good for drum.  When eaten fresh, they make fine table fare.  Usually drum can be taken in all water conditions.


Mississippi River Pool 13

Water clarity is slightly stained. Water level is at 11.8 feet and will soon start falling.  Water temperature is around 60 degrees.  Northern Pike – Fair: A few northern pike were reported being caught by anglers trying to catch bass.   Gaudy white spinner baits are the best lures for pike!  Channel Catfish – Good: Cat fishing has been good on cut bait and worms.  White Bass – Fair: Schools of white bass have been seen feeding on Pool 13 but no reports of anglers catching them.  Try white jigs or spinner baits when feeding schools are spotted.  Largemouth Bass – Excellent: Fish along exposed rock piles and behind fallen trees.  Some bass are being caught in Spring Lake along the edges of the now early growing week lines.  Freshwater drum – Good: Drum (also called sheepshead or perch) have been biting well along sandy current areas.   Some are being taken by walleye fishing on jigs but an egg sinker and worm rig is the best bet for this fish!


Mississippi River Pool 14

Water clarity is slightly stained.  Water levels at Camanche stabilized at 11.0 feet and will soon start falling.  Water temperature is around 60 degrees.  Channel Catfish – Good: Some nice catfish are still being reported.  Most catfish are being caught on cut bait but some are also being taken on leaches and night crawlers.  Crappie – No Report: Some nice crappies are being taken out of Sunfish and Cattail Slough but no report this week.  A few are also being reported out of Rock Creek.  Expect to find spawning panfish in these better quality backwater areas.  Freshwater Drum – Fair: Some drum are being reported by walleye anglers on the wing dams.  No real reports from bank anglers but drum remain one of the fish species that are commonly caught in tougher conditions.   Try an egg sinker and worm rig for best results.


Mississippi River Pool 15

Water level at LeClaire is 7.9 feet and will be stable to falling over the week. Channel Catfish – Good: Cats were biting along the rocks in the tail water area on stink and cut bait!


Water levels are rising in all locations in Pools 12, 13, 14 and 15.  Water is stained to turbid in some areas.


Mississippi River Pool 16

Tail water stage is 10.97 feet and forecasted to rise slightly for the next few days.  Water temperature is 67 degrees.  Channel Catfish – Fair: Channel cats are hitting on dip baits or a crawler drifted under a bobber along the rocky shorelines.  White Bass – Fair: White bass are hitting smaller spinner and jig combos like a road runner, small crankbaits or twister tails along the Davenport riverfront.  There are also a few small saugers being taken this way.  Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are biting in the Andalusia complex and access has improved with the bump in water level.  Bluegills are also being caught in Sunset harbor.  Try wax worms, piece of a crawler or small minnows.  Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth bass are hitting spinner baits in and around the Andalusia Island complex and are especially good on the off-shoots of Veile Chute.  Crappie – Good: Crappie are biting in the Andalusia backwaters. Try the old standard of a bobber and minnow rig or a small plastic jig


Mississippi River Pool 17

River stage is 9.77 feet and rising slowly.  Water temperature is 69 degrees. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting in the backwaters. Try wax worms or a piece of crawler under a small bobber.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Largemouth bass are hitting in the backwaters. Crappie – Fair: Crappie are biting in the backwaters. Use jig and plastic or bobber and minnow.


Mississippi River Pool 18

River stage is 11.23 feet and rising slowly.  Water temperature is 69 degrees.  White Bass – Good: white bass are biting around the Fourth pumping station on jig and plastic.  Bluegill – Fair: bluegills are biting in the backwaters try wax worms or a piece of crawler.  Crappie – Fair: Try the old standbys, jig and plastic or bobber and minnow fished shallow in the backwaters.


Mississippi River Pool 19

River stage is 7.35 feet and rising slowly.  Temperature is 68 degrees.  Channel Catfish – Good: Channels are biting on everything crawlers, minnows, shad parts and dip baits.  Flathead Catfish – Good: Flatheads are being caught on live bait using bank poles near deep holes and snags.  White Bass – Good: Jig and plastic or small crankbait in current areas near pumping stations.  Bluegill – Good: Try the usual wax worm or piece of crawler under a small bobber fished in the backwater and off channel areas.  Crappie – Good: Stick with the classics jig and plastic or bobber and minnow in backwaters and slow current areas.


Recent wide spread rainfall has the river rising slightly in all pools in the lower river.  This will continue for a few days as water from the north makes its way through the system.  The river is below flood stage in all four southern pools.  Warming temperature should increase fish activity.



Lake Geode

The lake is starting to clear up after heavy rains a few of weeks ago.  Bluegill – Good: The bluegills are in shallow.  Look for them to be on the beds off and on. Also look around the edges of the weed beds for some nice fish.  Crappie – Good: Anglers are picking up crappies along the face of the dam.


Lake Belva Deer

Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are in shallow.  Look for males on the beds.  Largemouth Bass – Excellent: Anglers are picking up some really nice bass in shallow along weed beds and in flooded timber.  Crappie – Fair: The crappies are out in about six feet of water down about a foot off the bottom.


Lake of the Hills

Rainbow Trout – Good: The trout are hitting on minnows at the inflow from Lambach Lake and gate six area. Remember Lake of the Hills is the only lake in West Lake Park where you can use minnows.  Bluegill – Good: The bluegills are almost everywhere in the shallow water. Most anglers are catching them on worm and bobbers.  Largemouth Bass – Excellent: White seems to be the color to use work the shallows as well as the underwater habitat.  Crappie – Fair: Anglers are catching crappies in shallow. Minnows can be used in Lake of the Hills but not in any of the other lakes in West Lake Park.


Railroad Lake

Bluegill – Good: When the sun is shining, bluegills are in the north side stump field.   Crappie – Good: Crappies are in shallow.  Work the trees and other habitat in the shallows.


Wilson Lake

Rainbow Trout – Excellent: Daily limits are fairly common using Powerbait, wax worms, or small jigs and spinners. Early morning and late evening, trout are feeding near the surface.  Channel Catfish – Fair: Anglers using night crawlers have been catching some nice catfish.


Skunk River (Rose Hill to Coppock)

River levels continue to drop slowly.   Channel Catfish – Good: Anglers are catching some nice catfish using cut bait or night crawlers.


Big Hollow Lake

The weather has kept angler numbers down. Just prior to the cold snap bluegill and bass fishing was good.  Bluegill – Fair: Anglers had been finding the bluegills along the rock shorelines, around the islands and 3-4 feet of water in flooded timber.  A worm under a bobber is working best. Gravel flats around the jetties are good places to start looking.  Crappie – Fair: Most of the crappies are around eight inches is this new lake.  They are hitting on tube jigs and spinners in about three feet of water.


For more information on the above lakes call the Lake Darling Fisheries Office at 319-694-2430.


Iowa Lake

Bluegill – Fair: Fish a small jig or worm in shallow bays.


Kent Park Lake

The ponds around the park are producing bluegills and bass.  Channel Catfish – Fair: Crawlers and stink bait have been catching some fish.  Bluegill – Good: Small jigs/waxies or worms fished along brush has been working.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try crawlers or artificial lure along rock or wood.


Lake Macbride

Crappie – Fair:  Fish shallow rock and wood. Use a small jig or minnow along rip rap or wood.   Walleye – Good: Trolling live bait rigs in 10-18 feet of water has been producing some fish.


Central Park Lake

Bluegill – Fair: The fish are moving shallow to spawn. Use a small jig or worm around shallow brush.


Pleasant Creek Lake

Remember, the minimum length to keep largemouth bass is 18 inches and muskellunge 40 inches.  Channel Catfish – Good: Stink bait has been working best.  White Bass – Fair: Some white bass are being picked up by walleye fishermen using jigs.  Bluegill – Fair: Some nicer bluegills are being picked by walleye fishermen using crawler rigs. Also some are being caught in sunken trees.  Walleye – Good: Many fish are small but larger ones are available. Jigs or crawler rigs in 15-25 feet of water is working best.


Diamond Lake

Remember, no minnows are allowed here.  Bluegill – Good: Use a small jig tipped with a waxie around shoreline brush. Most fish are 5-6 inches.  Crappie – Excellent: Fish right along shore along any brush or overhanging branches with a small jig. Most fish are about eight inches but 10 to 12-inch fish are available.  Walleye – Fair: Boat fishermen are picking up some smaller walleyes.


Otter Creek Lake

Bluegill – Fair: Fish shallow brush with a small jig or small worm.  Crappie – Fair: Fish shallow brush with a small jig or minnow.  Yellow Bass – Good: Fish with small jigs or spinners along the shoreline.


Union Grove Lake

If yellow bass are caught here, please keep it and report it to the park ranger.  Bluegill – Fair: Fish shallow brush with a small jig or worm.  Crappie – Good: Fishing deeper with a minnow under a bobber has been working. Also look for males in shallow water around brush.


Coralville Reservoir

The lake level is 681.6 feet as of May 16, and should continue to slowly rise to summer pool of 683 feet.  Channel Catfish – Fair: The bite has slowed some. Crawlers or cut bait have been working best.  Crappie – Fair: Some nice crappies are still being taken from brush piles using bright jigs or minnows.


Iowa River (Coralville Lake to River Junction)

Outflow from the tube is 1,300 cubic feet per second as of May 16, and flows should be fairly consistent as the week continues.  Channel Catfish – Fair:   Flathead Catfish – Fair:


Maquoketa (Hopkinton to Canton)

Channel Catfish – Fair: Use crawlers or cut bait.  Smallmouth Bass – Good: Use jigs or crankbaits.  Walleye – Fair: Use a jig tipped with a crawler.


For more information, contact the Lake Macbride Fisheries Station at 319-624-3615.


Lake Wapello

Largemouth bass have been hitting on spinner baits and plastic lizards.  Focus on areas with rip rapped shorelines or areas that have trees lying in the water.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers have been catching largemouth bass on spinner baits fished along shoreline structure.  Also try plastic worms fished along rip rapped areas along jetties.


Red Haw Lake

Bluegill – Good: Anglers have been catching bluegills and redears in the shallows using a jig tipped with a nightcrawler.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Largemouth bass are being caught using rubber worms and other plastic baits.  Concentrate on areas that are rip rapped.


Lake Sugema

Bluegill – Fair: Use small jigs tipped with a chunk of nightcrawler in the shallows.  Also try areas with any aquatic vegetation that provide shelter and shade.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers have been catching largemouth bass using spinner baits fished along rip rapped areas of the lake and also around shoreline structure.  Plastic crawdads can also be good in these areas. Lake Sugema contains the invasive plant brittle naiad so make sure not to transport any plant fragments in your equipment.  Please check your boat and trailer and remove any fragments that may be clinging to either.


Rathbun Reservoir

The lake level is 905.62 feet with 904.0 feet being normal pool.  The water temperature is in the upper 60s to the low 70s depending where you are on the lake.  Crappie – Fair: The crappies have started spawning.  The larger crappies have been scattered out in about 6-10 feet of water until they are ready to spawn.  There are some smaller crappies being caught along the shoreline.  Fish jigs over submerged structure such as cedar trees or tree stumps.  Walleye – Slow: There have been a few walleyes being caught by drifting or trolling nightcrawlers along underwater rock piles or submerged points. Don’t forget Lake Rathbun contains zebra mussels so make sure to clean, drain, and dry boats and equipment before transporting to another water body.  Spray boats and trailers with high pressure hot water (above 104 degrees) or let them dry for at least 10 days (five days in sun).


For further fishing reports in south central Iowa please call the Rathbun fish hatchery at 641-647-2406



Don Williams Lake

The lake is near full and the boat ramps are now useable.  Crappie – Good: The crappie spawn is wrapping up.  Crappies guarding nests are still being caught shallow in 2 to 4 feet of water around wood structure using minnows under a bobber or casting small jigs.  The upper half of the lake is producing better catches.


Beaver Lake

Bluegill – Excellent: Bluegills are spawning and are being caught shallow on the upper end and in the bays.  Nice bluegills exist in Beaver Lake up to eight inches.  Crappie – Fair: The crappie spawn is nearing the end.  Some crappies are being caught with minnows along the dam face and around the trees in the shallower water on the upper end.


Rock Creek Lake

Channel Catfish – Fair: Some channel cats are being picked up using stink bait and liver.  Crappie – Good: The crappie bite has slowed a little as the spawn is ending.  White crappie still spawning can be caught along the riprap on the dam using minnows.


Roberts Creek Lake

Crappie – Good: The tail end of the crappie spawn is occurring.  Anglers are doing well along the dam face on the Roberts Creek and Red Rock side of the dam fishing minnows under a bobber.


Big Creek Lake

Bluegill – Excellent: The bluegill spawn is going and they are being caught shallow using crawlers, and even small minnows.  The west shoreline south of the 100th Street boat ramp and the shoreline across the lake from the 100th Street ramp are excellent areas to start.  Big Creek bluegills are nice sized from 7.5 to 9 inches.


Red Rock Reservoir

Crappie – Good: The last of the spawning crappies are being caught around the riprap in the marina, the Roberts Creek outflow, and up the Whitebreast arm using small jigs or live minnows.


Saylorville Reservoir

Crappie – Good: The crappie spawn in Saylorville is about finished.  Some large crappies are still being caught in areas with riprap extending into the water.  These areas include along the shore in the marina, the rock jetty at Cherry Glen, along the dam face, Lakeview access and east side of the mile long bridge.  Live minnows under a bobber or small tube jigs are working well.


Des Moines River (Stratford to Saylorville Lake)

Channel Catfish – Good: Channel cat fishing has picked up with the warm weather and increased flows using stink baits or chicken livers.


Crappies are still being caught shallow in central Iowa, but the spawn is about over.  The bluegill spawn is going and providing some great fishing.  Water temperatures are in the upper 60s to low 70s.  For more information on central Iowa lakes and rivers contact Ben Dodd or Andy Otting at 515-432-2823.


Greenfield Lake

Spawning bluegills are being caught in the upper end of the lake.   Channel Catfish – Fair: A few channel catfish are being caught using shrimp. Fish average two pounds.  Bluegill – Good: Cast small jigs to catch spawning bluegill.   Crappie – Fair: A few crappies are being caught close to rock using red tube jigs or white twister tails. Sorting is necessary. Greenfield Lake has one concrete boat ramp.


Nodaway Lake

Channel Catfish – Fair: A few 1-2 pound catfish are being caught on shrimp. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills up to eight inches can be caught casting small jigs close to shore. Crappie – Fair: Crappies can still be caught around rock. Try casting around brush piles. Nodaway crappies average 10 inches.  Nodaway Lake has one boat ramp. Water temperature is in the 70s.


Lake Anita

Bluegills are spawning.  Bluegill – Good: Cast small jigs close to shore to find spawning bluegill. Fish over 9 inches are common. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers are having success fishing shallow coves with spinner baits and a slow retrieve. Many of the fish caught are in the 14 to 19-inch range. Crappie – Slow: A few 10-inch crappies have been caught in the north arm and around the underwater reefs using small jigs.   Anglers are sorting for the larger size fish. Lake Anita has two concrete boat ramps. The lake has good water clarity. Water temperature is 70 degrees


Willow Lake

Channel Catfish – Slow: Catfish are being caught along the campground shoreline using nightcrawlers. Fish are averaging one pound.  Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills up to 8.5 inches are being caught with nightcrawlers under a bobber.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Largemouth bass are being caught using spinner baits around the shoreline and jetties. Willow Lake has one concrete boat ramp and excellent water quality.


Viking Lake

Crappies are being caught in the rocks.  Largemouth Bass – Fair: Largemouth bass are being caught around rock piles and sunken trees using a variety of plastic baits and crankbaits. Fish up to 19 inches have been reported.  Crappie – Fair: Crappies up to 12 inches can still be caught along the dam and around jetties on twister tails. Average size is 8-9 inches. Viking has three concrete boat ramps. Water temperature is 70 degrees.


Lake Manawa

Crappies are being caught in the main lake.  Channel Catfish – Fair: Catfish up to 12 pounds have been reported being caught on liver. Average size is 1-3 pounds.  Crappie – Good: Minnows and small jigs have been the bait of choice on the west side of the lake and around docks. Lake Manawa water temperature is 70 degrees.


Cold Springs District Farm Ponds

There are numerous farm ponds in southern Iowa that can provide a quality fishing trip. Remember to always get permission to fish private farm ponds.   Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are close to shore spawning. Look for shallow depressions in the sediment usually in 2-4 feet of water. Cast small jigs close to the nests to catch spawning fish.   Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth bass are very aggressive now and readily caught casting a variety of lures and plugs along weed edges and around structure.


Water temperatures are 70 degrees. Crappie can still be caught close to shore in a few areas. Bluegills are now spawning. For more information call the district office in Lewis at 712-769-2587.


Green Valley Lake

Bluegills are hanging just off the edges of the habitat and fishing jetties down about 5 feet. Channel catfish are biting on crawlers or liver at the upper end of the west arm.  A lot of largemouth bass are hanging around the flooded trees. The lake level is about three feet down.  Water clarity is good.  Some of the habitat is partially submerged.  The main ramp is easily usable.


Twelve Mile Lake

The bluegills are on the sides of the fish mounds and on the steep banks near the spawning areas.  Small jigs tipped with a wax worm or crawler on light line works very well.  Some crappies are being caught from the tops of the fish mounds and rock reefs. Largemouth bass are very aggressive next to shore in the evenings.  Spinners and crankbaits work very well. Water clarity is normal.  Temperature is around 70 degrees.  Water clarity is above eight feet at the dam and about three feet at the upper end.


Three Mile Lake 

Crappies are still biting from the sides of the mounds and the roadway between the ramps. Water clarity is about four feet at the dam and about two feet at the upper end.


Mount Ayr Old Reservoir  – 

Crappies are still biting from just off of the dam and about five feet down. Water clarity is about four feet.


Pierce Creek 

Mid-sized crappies are biting from the dam. Water clarity is good.


Lake Icaria

Some crappies are still being caught from the sides of the fish mounds and jetties. The walleye bite is starting to pick up a bit.  Crawlers trolled along the dam in about eight feet of water seem to be the best. Water clarity is normal.  Temperature is near 70 degrees.


Wilson Lake

Bluegills can be found in the small bays in about three feet of water.  A crawler hung from a bobber and drifted works well. Water clarity is normal.


Badger Creek Lake

Largemouth bass are biting well on spinners cast near shore around flooded trees. Water clarity is very good and temperature is about 70 degrees.


West Lake Osceola

Largemouth bass are biting very well from the flooded trees along the shore. Water clarity is very good.


Water clarity at all lakes is above average.  Water temperatures are near 70 degrees.  The crappie spawn is nearing completion and the bluegills are just starting to setup spawning areas.


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