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Saturday Morning Fishing Report: Mid 50s Water Temps Leads to Fair Fishing Locally

Iowa anglers can once again access fish survey data collected by Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) fisheries staff during electroshocking and netting surveys on lakes, rivers and streams.

Survey summaries from individual lakes and rivers, fish species lengths compared across lakes, and fish length and weight data can be viewed and downloaded from www.iowadnr.gov/Fishing/Fish-Survey-Data. Additional data and summaries will be available in the future.

This weekly fishing report is compiled from information gathered from local bait shops, angler creel surveys and county and state parks staff. You can check the activity of your favorite lake or stretch of river within each district, including which species are being caught, a rating of the bite (slow, fair, good or excellent), as well as a hot bait or lure pattern.

For current information, contact the district fisheries office at the phone number listed at the end of each district report.

NORTHWEST

Arrowhead Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Keeper-sized crappie have been picked up with minnows on a small jig fished under a bobber.

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is around 60 degrees. Black Crappie – Fair: Bite is starting to pick back up again. Use a small jig with a small minnow in Town Bay around the fish house, along Ice House Point and in the marina. Fish are 8-12 inches. Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Fair: Fish from shore with a twister or a leach or minnow fished under a bobber. Yellow Perch – Fair: Pick up perch with a small jig and minnow or piece of crawler fished under a bobber. Anglers are having luck fishing around the fish house in Town Bay. Largemouth Bass – Fair.

Brushy Creek Lake
Water levels remain about 3 feet low. The west ramp is best option for launching a boat with the low water. Yellow Perch – Fair: Use crawlers or minnows on a jig near shore in 5-10 feet of water. Some sorting is needed. Black Crappie – Good: Fish are starting to stage close to shore. Use a bare tube jig or a small jig and minnow fished under a bobber near shore. Bluegill – Fair.  Walleye – Slow. Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass anglers are doing well along shore and structure.

North Twin Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Crappie have moved in close to shore. Try a tube jig or a minnow fished on a small jig under a bobber along shore and along docks. Channel Catfish – Fair: Fish for catfish along shore with cut bait or crawlers fished on the bottom. Walleye – Fair: Fish from shore using a leech or minnow fished under a bobber.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperatures are around 60 degrees. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a tube jig with a small minnow. Yellow Perch – Fair: Look for perch along shore using minnows fished on a jig. Fish are 8-11 inches. Some sorting is needed. Channel Catfish – Slow: Use cut bait or dipped catfish baits fished on the bottom along shore. Walleye – Good: Fishing in the main lake and from shore has been productive, especially during late evening and low light conditions. Anglers have had luck throwing crankbaits as well as twisters. Also try a minnow or leech fished under a bobber from shore.

Water temperatures are around 60 degrees in most district lakes. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638.


Beeds Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try a small minnow near down trees. Yellow Bass – Fair. Bluegill – Slow.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the mid-50’s. Black Crappie – Fair: Fish open pockets in the rushes. The bite will get better as the water warms this week. Walleye – Fair: Try a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation and rocky habitat. Shore anglers are having some success fishing from docks. Best bite is after sunset. Yellow Bass – Fair: Shore anglers are having some success fishing from the jetties and docks. The bite at the Island is picking up; best time is at first light. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler in open areas of vegetation. White Bass – Slow.

Crystal Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: Try a small minnow fished near woody habitat. Bluegill – Slow.

Rice Lake
Bluegill – Fair: Use a piece of crawler fished near vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Fair.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Largemouth Bass
 – Fair: Use dark colored plastics fished around vegetation. Bluegill – Fair: Try a piece of crawler fished near vegetation.

For information on the lakes and rivers in north central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517.


East Okoboji Lake
The walleye season is open. Most courtesy docks are in place. The water temperature is 51 degrees. Black Crappie – Fair. Bluegill – Fair.

Lost Island Lake
Anglers have had consistent success with yellow perch and a few other species this spring. Yellow Perch – Good.  Bluegill – Fair.  Black Crappie – Fair.  Walleye – Fair.

Minnewashta Lake
Black Crappie
 – Fair: A nice crappie bite can be found with a little movement around the lake.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair.

Spirit Lake
The walleye season is open. Most courtesy docks are in place. Perch and panfish are slowly making their way in shallower, making shoreline and dock fishing more promising. The water temperature is 50 degrees. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
The walleye season is open. All courtesy docks are in place. The water temperature is 50 degrees. Bluegill – Fair. Black Crappie – Fair.

The walleye season is open. All courtesy docks should now be in place. The extended forecast calls for varying temperatures with highs in the 50’s to 60’s. Lake levels are currently lower, making navigation and launching more difficult. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.


NORTHEAST

Cedar River (above Nashua)
Water levels are low. Water clarity should improve as winds decrease. Use care boating with low water levels. Channel Catfish – Good: Use dead chubs or worms on stream bottom fished along rocky shorelines and stump fields. Walleye – Fair: The bite should improve as water clears. Use a bladed spinnerbait or jig tipped with minnow.

Decorah District Streams
Trout streams are low with improving clarity. Catchable trout stream stocking is in full swing. All catchable trout stockings will be unannounced due to COVID-19 precautions. A stocking calendar will not be available this year. Hatchery grounds are open. Please observe social distancing and mask rules when visiting hatchery grounds. Fourth season turkey hunting is open – ending May 16; wear bright clothing when fishing. Rainbow Trout – Excellent: Best bite is on cloudy days with excellent water clarity. Use light weight spinning rod and reels. Try a small hook or light jig head with cheese worms or plastic tail. Brown Trout – Good: Off-color water from rainfall will spur a brownie bite. Try pheasant tail nymphs with small midge or scud dropper fished along edges of a weed bed, ledges and heads of pools. Brook Trout – Good: Eleven streams have naturally reproducing populations with public access; learn more on our Trout Fishing webpage. Excellent hatches of blue-winged olives caddis flies midges and stoneflies. Fish the hatch on sunny afternoons.

Lake Hendricks
Hit and miss fish activity. Lake levels are dropping. Wind activity is resuspending sediments. Fish activity is improving as water warms. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of worm under a bobber about a foot off the bottom fished along rocky shores and near structure. Black Crappie – Fair: Use a hook tipped with a minnow or small spinnerbait fished near brush piles or drop offs. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try a small spinner or crankbait fished near drop offs or other structure.

Lake Meyer
Few people out with windy weather. Water levels are falling with lack of rain. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of waxworm or minnow fished under a bobber along a sunny shoreline. Black Crappie – Fair. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use a jerk or crankbait fished along brush pile or rocky structure.

Turkey River (above Clermont)
Water levels are low with good clarity. Water temperatures are in the mid to upper 50’s. White Sucker – Good: Use a worm fished on the stream bottom. Walleye – Fair: Find fish in eddies and runs; use crank and spinnerbaits. Smallmouth Bass – Slow.

Upper Iowa River (above Decorah)
Water levels are stabilizing after this week’s rain. Levels remain low. Clarity is improving. Walleye – Fair: Anglers are finding fish in eddies and runs; use crank or spinnerbaits. White Sucker – Excellent: Try a hook tipped with a nightcrawler fished on the bottom.

Volga Lake
Lake levels are falling with lack of rain. Water clarity is good. Recent windy conditions resuspended sediments near shoreline; fish this edge for best luck. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try chunks of chubs or worms fished on the bottom along wind rowed shores. Bluegill – Fair: Try a small piece of worm fished under a bobber about a foot off the bottom along the rocky shorelines. Largemouth Bass – Good: Use a spinner or crankbait fished near the brush piles or rocky shorelines. Channel Catfish – Fair: Best catfishing lake around. Use several worms or chunk of dead chub fished on lake bottom near stumps or other habitat.

Recent rainfall bumped water levels briefly, but all area rivers and streams remain low with good to excellent clarity. Chance of showers through the weekend with temperatures in the 60’s to 30’s. Fish activity has slowed with this cold snap. For current fishing information, please call the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.


Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
Anglers are catching largemouth bass, bluegill and crappie on Casey Lake. Black Crappie – Fair: Fish from a boat over structure using a 1/64-ounce jig tipped with a waxworm. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try crankbaits fished off of the jetties and dam. Bluegill – Fair: Use a piece of crawler under a bobber.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
Anglers are having little success on walleyes, but doing well on smallmouth bass on the Cedar River. Walleye – Fair: Cast and retrieve jig and plastics tipped with or without a minnow. Concentrate on pools and current breaks. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try jig and minnow or retrieving spinner baits. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use dead minnows, crawlers or cut baits for catfish on the river. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie are biting in the warmer backwater shallows; try a minnow under a bobber near brush piles.

George Wyth Lake
Anglers are doing a lot of bobber fishing for crappie. Use extreme caution launching a boat off of the ramp with low water levels on the lake. Black Crappie – Fair: Fish from a boat over structure using a 1/64-ounce jig tipped with a waxworm or a crappie minnow under a bobber.

Lake Delhi
Anglers are starting to pick up some crappie. Fish early mornings or late evenings to avoid heavy boat traffic. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a crappie minnow under a bobber or jig/retrieve colored tube jigs near brush piles or docks.

Manchester District Streams
All area Manchester trout streams are in excellent condition and providing insect hatches with the recent warmer weather. Brown Trout – Fair: Spring Branch Creek is a favorite amongst anglers for quality and trophy-sized brown trout; there has been quite a bit of angling pressure.

Maquoketa River (above Monticello)
The Maquoketa River in Delaware County has stabilized and should provide some angling opportunities for the upcoming weekend. Walleyes are post-spawn and have spread out throughout the river. Walleye – Fair: Cast and retrieve jig and plastics tipped with or without a minnow. Concentrate on pools and current breaks. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Spinnerbaits and crankbaits are working well for smallmouth bass. Black Crappie – Fair: Try colored tube jigs near structure or a crappie minnow under a bobber.

Martens Lake
Anglers are starting to catch some crappie. Black Crappie – Fair: Try small jigs tipped with a waxworm fished along the edges of the weed beds.

Plainfield Lake
Channel Catfish – Good: Use dead minnows or cut baits fished from the shore or a boat.

Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock)
Reports of anglers catching walleye on the Shell Rock River. Walleye – Slow: Cast and retrieve jig and plastics tipped with or without a minnow. Concentrate on pools and current breaks.

South Prairie Lake
Anglers are catching crappie along the edges of weed beds. Black Crappie – Fair: Try small jigs tipped with a waxworm fished along the edges of the weed beds.

Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
Reports of anglers catching northern pike on the Upper Wapsipinicon River. The river continues to drop and should provide fair to good angling opportunities for the upcoming weekend. Northern Pike – Good: Cast and retrieve large spinnerbaits or fish a live shiner or chub under a bobber near off channel areas. Walleye – No Report: Cast and retrieve jig and plastics tipped with or without a minnow. Concentrate on pools and current breaks.

Interior rivers are low and providing fair to good angling opportunities for smallmouth bass, walleye and crappie. Rivers should be in good condition for the upcoming weekend. Lakes are starting to produce some crappie. Trout streams are in excellent condition and providing some insect hatches with the warmer weather. For further information contact your area bait and tackle shops. All field stations and fish hatcheries remain closed. Call the Manchester Hatchery at 563-927-3276 for more information.


MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Mississippi River Pool 9
Lansing water level is 8.7 feet and expected to remain stable. Water temperature is near 58 degrees. Yellow Perch – Fair: Look for perch hanging above vegetation from 4 to 12 feet of water with jig and a minnow or piece of worm. Northern Pike – Fair: Pike fishing has picked up again post-spawn. Try flashy spoons along openings of backwater lakes as fish move into the vegetation. Black Crappie – Fair: Look for areas with moderate to slow current amongst the trees in backwaters. Walleye – Good: Fishing below the Lock & Dams has slowed. Look for current breaks along side channel areas. Sauger – Slow: Fishing below the lock & dams has slowed. Look for current breaks along side channel areas. Bluegill – Good: Fish in areas with little to no current using a small piece of worm under a bobber. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use cut bait or a night crawler fished off the bottom in areas of moderate current in side channels. Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth action is picking up with the warmer water temperatures. Try a flashy spinnerbait fished in the upper portion of backwater lakes.

Mississippi River Pool 10
Lynxville water level is 617.1 feet and is expected to drop a foot this week. Water temperature is 60 degrees at Lynxville dam. Sauger – Slow: Fishing below the Lock & Dams has slowed. Look for current breaks along side channel areas. Walleye – Fair: Fishing below the Lock & Dams has slowed. Look for current breaks along side channel areas. Yellow Perch – Fair: Look for perch hanging above vegetation from 4 to 12 feet of water with jig and a minnow or piece of worm. Northern Pike – Fair: Pike fishing has picked up again post-spawn. Try flashy spoons fish along openings of backwater lakes as fish move into the vegetation. Black Crappie – Fair: Look for areas with moderate to slow current amongst the trees in backwaters. Bluegill – Good: Use a small piece of worm under a bobber in areas with little to no current. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or a nightcrawler fished off the bottom in areas of moderate current in side channels. Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth action is picking up with the warmer water temperatures. Use a flashy spinnerbait fished in the upper portion of backwater lakes.

Mississippi River Pool 11
Water level is 8.7 feet at Guttenberg and is expected to drop a foot next week. Water temperature is 57 degrees at the Guttenberg dam. Sauger – Slow: Fishing below the Lock & Dams has slowed. Look for current breaks along side channel areas. Walleye – Fair: Fishing below the Lock & Dams has slowed. Look for current breaks along side channel areas. Yellow Perch – Fair: Look for perch hanging above vegetation from 4 to 12 feet of water with a jig and a minnow or piece of worm. Northern Pike – Fair: Pike fishing has picked up again post-spawn. Try flashy spoons fished along openings of backwater lakes as fish move into the vegetation. Black Crappie – Fair: Look for areas with moderate to slow current amongst the trees in backwaters. Bluegill – Good: Use a small piece of worm under a slip bobber in areas with little to no current. Channel Catfish – Good: Try cut bait or a nightcrawler fished off the bottom in areas of moderate current in side channels. Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth action is picking up with the warmer water temperatures. Use a flashy spinnerbait fished in the upper portion of backwater lakes.

Upper Mississippi River levels are expected to recede slightly this week and stabilize. Water clarity is improving with temperatures in the upper 50’s to 60 this week. Walleye slot length limits now apply on the entire Iowa border of the Mississippi River. All walleyes less than 15 inches long and between 20-27 inches must be immediately released. One walleye over 27 inches may be kept.  Combined walleye/sauger daily limit 6/possession 12.


Mississippi River Pool 12
The water level is expected to recede this week. Water levels are 8.2 feet at the Lock and Dam and 10.4 feet at the railroad bridge. The water temperature is around 64 degrees. Water clarity is fair. Walleye – Slow: A slow spring for walleyes, but the population structure of walleyes looks sound. They just did not bite well. Largemouth Bass – Excellent: The bass bite is on in the backwaters. The fish are aggressive and hitting on most spinnerbaits.  Fish the shallow sun and wind-soaked backwater areas. Northern Pike – Good: Cast gaudy spinnerbaits along vegetation lines in the backwater areas. Yellow Perch – Fair: A few yellow perch are being reported incidentally by anglers catching bluegills. Channel Catfish – Good: The catfishing has started on the Mississippi with most anglers using worms or cut bait. Bluegill – Excellent: Lots of bluegills are being found in backwater areas. Fish in shallow sun-soaked backwater areas in 1 to 4 feet of water. Bowfin – Excellent: Bowfin are super aggressive and can be caught on spinners or worms in backwater areas. These fish are excellent fighting fish. Black Crappie – Slow: The cool weather set back the crappie movement into the shallow waters to spawn.

Mississippi River Pool 13
The water level is 9.1 feet at the Bellevue Lock and Dam and is receding. Water temperature is around 62 degrees in main channel. The water clarity is good. The Bellevue City and DNR ramps are open for use in the tailwater. Paddlefish – No Report: Paddlefish season is now closed for the year. Walleye – Slow: A slow spring for walleyes, but the population structure of walleyes looks sound. They just did not bite well. Northern Pike – Good: Use gaudy white spinners in Crooked Slough, South Sabula Lake, Spring Lake and near Mickelson Landing. Yellow Perch – Fair: Perch are being reported by anglers who are catching bluegills. Largemouth Bass – Excellent: The bass bite is on in the backwaters. The fish are aggressive and hitting on most spinnerbaits. Fish the shallow sun and wind-soaked backwater areas. Bluegill – Excellent: Lots of bluegills are being found in backwater areas. Fish the shallow sun and wind-soaked backwater areas in 1 to 4 feet of water. Channel Catfish – Good: Try worms or cut baits in near shore moderate current areas. Bowfin – Excellent: Bowfin are readily being taken in backwater areas on small spinners or worms. They are a hard fighting fish and can be  fun to catch. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Catch as many drum as you want in near shore tailwater areas using an egg sinker and worm rig. Black Crappie – Fair: Crappie moved out of the shallows after the week’s cool temperatures.

Mississippi River Pool 14
The water levels at the Fulton Lock and Dam is receding and is 8.5 feet, 11.8 feet at Camanche and 6.6 feet at Le Claire. Water temperature is around 63 degrees in the main channel. Water clarity is fair. Paddlefish – No Report: The paddlefish season is closed for the year. Walleye – Slow: A slow spring for walleyes, but the population structure of walleyes looks sound. They just did not bite well. Northern Pike – Good: Pike are being caught in backwater areas such as the Rock Creek complex near Camanche. Yellow Perch – Fair: Yellow perch are being taken incidentally when angling for bluegills. Largemouth Bass – Excellent: The bass bite is on in the backwaters. The fish are aggressive and hitting on most spinnerbaits. Fish the shallow sun and wind-soaked backwater areas. Channel Catfish – Good: Use worms and cut bait along the banks and boat ramp access areas. Bowfin – Excellent: Bowfin are on the bite in backwater areas and can readily be caught on small spinners or worms. Bluegill – Excellent: Lots of bluegills are being found in backwater areas. Fish in shallow sun-soaked backwater areas in 1 to 4 feet of water. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Lots of freshwater drum can be caught in near shore areas using an egg sinker and worm rig.  Crappie – No Report: Expect crappies to move back in the shallows very soon, especially when night temperatures warm up a bit.

Mississippi River Pool 15
The water level is 8.9 feet at Rock Island and is receding. The water temperature is near 57 degrees. Water clarity is good. Channel Catfish – Good: Cut shad bait is often the ticket for early season catfish. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Lots of freshwater drum can be caught in near shore areas using an egg sinker and worm rig.

Water temperature is in the lower 60’s in the main channel. Water clarity is only fair after recent rains. If you have angling questions please call the Bellevue Fisheries Station at 563-880-8781.


Mississippi River Pool 16
Tailwater stage is 8.86 feet at Lock and Dam 15 in the Quad Cities. Flood stage is 15 feet. Tailwater stage has been fairly steady the past few days. Walleye – Slow: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Cast jigs or pull three-way rigs with minnows. White Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies in the backwaters. Try jigs and minnows or minnows under a bobber fished around brush piles in the Andalusia Island Complex and Sunset Marina. Bluegill – Good: Some bluegills are being caught in Sunset Marina. Use worms or waxworms fished under a bobber. White Bass – Good: White bass are being caught along the Davenport Riverfront. Cast jigs and twister tails or crankbaits. Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth bass are being caught in Sunset Marina on spinnerbaits.

Mississippi River Pool 17
Tailwater stage is 7.44 feet at Lock and Dam 16 in Muscatine. Flood stage is 15 feet. Tailwater stage has been fairly steady the past few days. Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Cast jigs and minnows or pull three-way rigs with minnows. Trolling crankbaits by GPC can produce fish at times as well. White Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies in the backwaters. Try jigs and minnows or minnows under a bobber fished around brush piles in Big Timber or Cleveland Slough.

Mississippi River Pool 18
Tailwater stage is 8.65 feet at Lock and Dam 17 at New Boston. Flood stage is 15 feet. Tailwater stage has been fairly steady the past few days. The Toolsboro ramp is open.  Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Cast jigs and minnows or pull three-way rigs with minnows. White Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies in the backwaters. Try jigs and minnows or minnows fished under a bobber at the Huron Island complex. Channel Catfish – Fair: Some channel catfish are being caught from shore along the Toolsboro ramp. Try fishing with nightcrawlers.

Mississippi River Pool 19
Tailwater stage is 5.42 feet at Lock and Dam 18 above Burlington and has been fairly steady the past few days. Flood stage is 10 feet. River stage is 11.05 feet at Burlington; flood stage is 15 feet. River stage is 526.17 feet at Fort Madison; flood stage is 528 feet. We have not received any fishing report information for this pool this week.

River stage has been fairly steady the past few days. Water clarity is fair. Main channel water temperature is around 64 degrees. If you have questions on fishing Pools 16-19 contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST

Big Hollow Lake
Water temperatures were in the low 60s earlier this week but are starting back down. Black Crappie – Good: Work the shallow water in the bays on the north side where the water is a little warmer from the sun. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass fishing is picking up as they move in shallow to feed. Bounce crankbaits through the rocks or soft plastics bounced off the trees.

Lake Belva Deer
Water temperature last weekend was 63 degrees. Water clarity was 9 feet. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass fishing is picking up with more fish (males) moving in to set up territories to build nests. Black Crappie – Good: Crappies moved in shallow to spawn over the weekend and were still right next to shore on Monday. Later in the week they moved a little deeper with the cool night temperatures. Bluegill – Fair: Anglers are picking up some nice bluegills while crappie fishing.

Lake Darling
Largemouth Bass – Fair: With the NW wind on Thursday, bass moved in shallow on the south side to feed near the rip-rap. Black Crappie – Fair: For those who braved the wind over the weekend, crappies were in shallow by Thursday. They moved back out to 6-8 feet of water. Bluegill – Good: Male bluegills are moving into the shallows to pick out spots to nest.

Lost Grove Lake
The wind this week has kept most anglers off the water. Water temperature got up into the mid 60’s over the weekend, but have come down some. Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass have moved in shallow to feed and set up territories for nesting. Black Crappie – Fair: They moved in shallow this weekend to start spawning, but the cold nights and strong winds have slowed them down some.

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


Central Park Lake
Water temperature is about 60 degrees. Water clarity is very good. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Try soft plastics or spinnerbaits up shallow. Bluegill – Slow: Use small jigs or live bait under a slip bobber.

Coralville Reservoir
The lake level is 683 feet. Channel Catfish – Slow. White Crappie – Slow.

Diamond Lake
All facilities in the park are open. Black Crappie – Good: Try small jigs or jigs tipped with worms. Anglers fishing off the jetties are having some success. Most fish are 8-9 inches with an occasional larger one mixed in. Bluegill – Fair.

Gateway Park South
Bluegill – Good: Fish are in shallow. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Fish are in shallow. Black Crappie – Good: Fish are 7-10 feet down. Walleye – Good. Yellow Perch – Fair.

Iowa Lake (Iowa County)
Water temperature is about 64 degrees. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Fish weeds edges or open pockets. Black Crappie – Good: Fish for suspended fish in 7-10 feet of water. Bluegill – Good: Fish shallow open pockets in the weeds.

Lake Macbride
Water temperatures are in the low 60’s. Water clarity is very good. Evening bite is best. Black Crappie – Fair: Male crappies are moving shallow. Try jigs or minnows around shallow wood. Some fish are still staging in 10-15 feet of water around brush stumps or rock piles. Walleye – Slow: Try jigs or crankbaits over or along windblown rock or jigging in 15-25 feet of water. Try shallower towards evening. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Fish are being caught on shallow rock and wood.

Rodgers Park Lake
Bluegill – Fair. Black Crappie – Fair.

Union Grove Lake
Water clarity is good. The docks are in at the ramps. No fishing reports are available.

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


Hawthorn Lake
Largemouth Bass
 – Slow: Try along rocky shorelines and fishing jetties. Bluegill – Slow: Use small jigs tipped with live bait.

Lake Miami
Bluegills and crappies will start to move shallow as the water warms. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Target areas along the dam and around the fishing jetties.

Lake Sugema
Target channel catfish with nightcrawlers or cut bait. Black Crappie – Slow: Use small jigs with live bait. Largemouth Bass – Slow: Try along the fishing jetties and other rocky shorelines.

Lake Wapello
Target largemouth bass with spinnerbaits or crankbaits fished around the submerged structure.

Ottumwa Park Pond South (Trout Pond)
Trout were stocked in March. Use live minnows fished under a bobber, small tube and twister jigs, in-line spinners and casting spoons. You need a valid fishing license and pay the trout fee to fish for or possess trout.

Rathbun Reservoir
The current lake level is 905.89 feet msl; recreation pool is 904 feet msl. Water temperatures range from 50-55 degrees. depending on location. Prairie Ridge and Island View Middle boat ramps are closed, but will open by May 15. Lake Rathbun has zebra mussels so make sure to properly drain, clean and dry equipment before transporting to another waterbody. Channel Catfish – Fair: Target windblown shorelines with shad sides or nightcrawlers. Black Crappie – Slow: Try minnows over brush piles or rock piles in 10-15 feet of water. Crappie should move shallow as the water warms up.

Red Haw Lake
Largemouth Bass
 – Slow: Target areas along the shorelines and along the dam. Bluegill – Slow: Try small jigs under a bobber.

Contact the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406 with questions about fishing in south central Iowa.


SOUTHWEST

Big Creek Lake
Walleye
 – Good: Try jigging or trolling minnows from the marina around to the beach, the East Boat Ramp bay and the West Boat Ramp bay. Black Crappie – Fair: The crappie spawn is still ahead as of the first week of May. Catch crappies beginning to move shallow fishing live minnows under a float or near rock and wood.

Boone District Farm Ponds
Largemouth Bass
 – Good: Farm ponds and community ponds have warmed quickly compared to larger lakes. Catch largemouth bass casting slowly retrieved spinnerbaits crankbaits and soft plastics. Catch bluegills and crappies on live bait under bobbers or slowly retrieved jigs with small twister tails or swimbaits.

Des Moines River (Saylorville to Red Rock)
Walleye
 – Fair: Catch walleyes below the dams from Saylorville to below Red Rock casting jigs tipped with twister tails, swimbaits or live minnows. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Catch white bass and hybrid striped bass below the dams casting shad and shiner imitating plastics or jigs tipped with shiners.

Don Williams Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Try live minnows fished near submerged trees.

Red Rock Reservoir
White Crappie – Fair: Try live minnows or cast plastics near rock and wood in coves off the main body of water.

Rock Creek Lake
White Crappie
 – Good: Cast jigs or live minnows under a bobber near wood and rock habitat near shore.

For information on Central Iowa lakes and rivers contact Ben Dodd at 641-891-3795 or Andy Otting at 515-204-5885.


Greenfield Lake
Greenfield has a good population of channel catfish of all sizes. The lake offers an opportunity to catch a trophy catfish. Channel Catfish – Fair: Try cut bait or shad sides fished on wind-blown shorelines. Black Crappie – Good: Anglers are catching crappies around the jetties and along the dam. Sorting is needed for larger fish.

Lake Anita
Black crappie are starting to spawn on the underwater reefs and jetties in the lake. Black Crappie – Fair: Cast small jigs around rocky shorelines to find spawning crappie. Sorting is needed as there is a large year class of 6-inch crappies in the lake this year. Bluegill – Fair: Catch bluegills around the reefs and on the rockpiles out from the campground. Largemouth Bass – No Report: Largemouth bass are in the tree piles.

Lake Manawa
Manawa is a good destination for spring catfish. Crappie bite has slowed a bit with cooler temperatures, but you can still catch them in the canals. Channel Catfish – Good: Channel catfish are actively feeding. Target catfish on wind-blown shorelines with shad sides. Black Crappie – Fair: Target black crappies in the canals this week. White Crappie – Fair: Cast minnows under a bobber in the canals and on the lake side.

Littlefield Lake
DNR fishery staff did an electrofishing survey on Littlefield this week. Numerous largemouth bass, bluegill and black crappie were sampled. Restocking of these species will not be necessary. Channel catfish will be restocked this fall. Channel Catfish – No Report: Winterkill removed most of the channel catfish in Littlefield. Bluegill – Slow: The bluegills in the DNR survey looked good and averaged 8.5-inches. Black Crappie – Fair:: The black crappies were 10- to 12-nches in the survey.

Meadow Lake
Meadow has a good fish population. Bluegills will average 8-inches and black crappies 10- to 12-inches. Largemouth bass and channel catfish are also doing well. Black Crappie – Good: Black crappies are spawning on the reefs and along the dam. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills are being caught in tree piles casting nightcrawlers under a bobber. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers report catching bass in the tree piles.

Prairie Rose Lake
Water clarity is excellent. Bluegill – Fair: Jump from one tree pile to the next searching for bluegill. Fish average 8.5-inches. Black Crappie – Fair: Fish along rocky shorelines to find spawning crappies.  Largemouth Bass – Good: Fish around the cedar tree piles using a slow presentation.

For information on lakes in the Southwest District call the Cold Springs office at (712) 769-2587.


Green Valley Lake
Black Crappie – Fair: Catch crappie up to 10-inches with jigs tipped with a minnow fished near cedar tree brush piles and the fishing jetties. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a jig fished near cedar tree brush piles or rocky shoreline areas for largemouth bass up to 21 inches.

Little River Watershed Lake
Courtesy docks are in at main ramp and bait shop ramp. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try crankbaits fished along windblown rocky areas or jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles. Black Crappie – Fair: Catch crappie up to 9-inches with jigs fished along the fishing jetties.

Three Mile Lake
Courtesy docks are installed at the main boat ramp. Walleye – Fair: Try jigs tipped with a nightcrawler or leech fished on the flats for walleye of all sizes. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Use crankbaits fished along windblown rocky areas or jigs near cedar tree brush piles. Black Crappie – Fair: Catch crappie up to 11-inches with jigs tipped with a minnow fished along rocky shoreline areas or cedar tree brush piles.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake
Dock is in at main ramp. Black Crappie – Fair: Try jigs tipped with a minnow fished near cedar tree brush piles for crappie of all sizes. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Catch largemouth bass up to 21-inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or rocky areas.

Water temperature in most Mount Ayr district lakes is in the upper 50s to low 60s. For more information, call the Mount Ayr Fisheries office at 641-464-3108

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