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Saturday Morning Fishing Report: Area Lakes and River Fishing Picking Up

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: Try minnows on a small jig fished under a bobber along shore with structure.

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperature is in the low 60’s with about 2 feet of water clarity. Lake level is about 4 inches below the crest of the spillway. Black Crappie – Fair. Use a small bare jig or a jig with a small minnow or piece of crawler in Town Bay around the fish house, along Ice House Point and in the marina. Fish are 8-12 inches. Bluegill – Slow. Walleye – Fair: A recent survey showed adult walleye in near-shore areas. Fish from shore with a twister or a leach or minnow fished under a bobber along Ice House Point shoreline, the north shore picnic area, or the east end near the outlet structure. Yellow Perch – Fair: Try 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 – Fair: Crappie are near 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 are close to shore. Try a tube jig or a minnow fished on a small jig under a bobber along shore and docks. Channel Catfish – Fair: Fish for catfish along shore with cut bait or crawlers fished on the bottom. Walleye – Fair: Try a leech or minnow fished under a bobber from shore.

Storm Lake (incl Little Storm Lake)
Water temperatures are in the low 60’s. Water clarity is good. Black Crappie – Fair: Try a tube jig or a jig and small minnow under a bobber near shore. Yellow Perch – Fair: Look for perch along shore using minnows fished on a jig. Channel Catfish – Slow: Use cut bait or dipped catfish baits fished on the bottom along shore. Walleye – Fair: Walleye fishing has been fair to good in the main lake. Try trolling along the dredge cuts. Anglers have picked up a few walleye from shore with a minnow or leech fished under a bobber. White Bass – Fair: Fish are being picked up while trolling along the dredge cuts with crankbaits and spinners with crawlers.

Water temperatures are in the low 60’s 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 or tube jig fished from the causeway. Best bite is early morning. Yellow Bass – Fair: Drift fish a tube jig. Bluegill – Slow.

Bluebill Lake
Crappies are biting on minnows fished off the jetty. Use a slip bobber to position your bait above the brush piles. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass anglers are catching fish on a variety of baits. Make long cast to fish the vegetation edge with the really clear water.

Clear Lake
Water temperature is in the lower 60’s. Black Crappie – Fair: Use a small minnow fished in the open pockets in the rushes. Early morning bite is best. Walleye – Fair: Try a jig tipped with a minnow or crawler fished near vegetation on the north shore. Also try slip bobber fishing a leech on the rock reefs.. Shore anglers are having some success fishing minnows from docks. Best bite is after sunset. Yellow Bass – Fair: Shore anglers are having some success fishing small jigs from the jetties and docks. The bite at the Island is picking up; best bite 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: Use a piece of crawler fished under a bobber near the vegetation edge. Largemouth Bass – Fair.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Largemouth Bass
 – Fair: Use dark colored plastics fished around vegetation and near the jetty. Bluegill – Fair: Try a piece of crawler under a bobber 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
Muskellunge season opens up May 21st.
 The walleye season is open. Leaches with a slip bobber are a simple way to get some success out fishing with kids. Try this setup in about 8 feet or less of water. The current water temperature is 60 degrees. Black Crappie – Fair: Try fishing close to some docks and hoists. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill are starting to be found in shallower water and around docks and hoists. Leaches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well.

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. Bluegill – Fair.

Silver Lake (Dickinson)
Walleye
 – Fair.

Spirit Lake
Muskellunge season opens up May 21st.
 The walleye season is open. Perch and panfish are slowly making their way in shallower, making shoreline and dock fishing more promising. The water temperature is 60 degrees. Yellow Perch – Fair.

West Okoboji Lake
Muskellunge season opens up May 21st.
 The walleye season is open. Try fishing for panfish in 8 feet or less and around docks and hoists. The water temperature is 57 degrees. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill are starting to be found in shallower water and around docks and hoists. Leaches or worms and a simple bobber setup work well. Black Crappie – Fair.

The Muskellunge season opens up May 21st on West Okoboji, East Okoboji, and Spirit Lakes as well as all Iowa-Minnesota border waters. The extended forecast calls for warmer temperatures with highs in the 70’s and 80’s. Lake levels are 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 with excellent clarity. Minimal boating activity due to low water levels. Channel Catfish – Slow: Use dead chubs or worms fished on the stream bottom  along rocky shorelines and stump fields. Walleye – Slow: Try a bladed spinnerbait or jig tipped with a minnow.

Decorah District Streams
Trout streams are low with excellent 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. Rainbow Trout – Excellent: Best bite is on cloudy days with clear water. 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 a 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; should improve as water warms. Lake levels are stable. Water clarity is excellent. 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 – Good: Crappie starting to spawn. Use a small jig tipped with a crawler or small plastic tail fished near brush piles or drop-offs. Largemouth Bass – Good: Skip topwater lures over the top of vegetation from shore.

Lake Meyer
Water levels are stabilizing. Water clarity is excellent. Best bite is overcast days or early morning or late afternoon. Fish are starting to come to shallow water. 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 crank bait 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 remain low with excellent clarity. Walleye – Fair: Anglers are finding fish in eddies and runs; use a jig with dark plastics or worms. White Sucker – Excellent: Try a hook tipped with a nightcrawler fished on the bottom. Northern Pike – Fair: Pike are biting; use a steel leader. A jig tipped with a crawler works well. Brown Trout – Good: Anglers fishing from shore or floating are finding trout in rock ledges, deeper holes or around boulders. Try jigs tipped with crawlers.

Volga Lake
Lake levels are stabilizing. Water clarity is excellent. Water temperatures are slowly warming to the upper 50’s to low 60’s. Channel Catfish – Fair: Best catfishing lake around. Try several worms or chunk of dead chub fished on the lake bottom near stumps or other habitat. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of worm fished under a bobber about a foot off the bottom along the rocky shorelines. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try a spinner or crankbait fished near the brush piles or rocky shorelines.

All area rivers and streams remain low with good to excellent clarity. Chance of showers through the weekend with temperatures in the 80’s to 60’s. Fish activity should pick up as the water warms. For current fishing information, please call the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324.


Big Woods Lake
Anglers are catching crappie. Black Crappie – Good: Use colored tube jigs or a crappie minnow under a slip bobber fished off of the jetties in 4-8 feet of water.

Brinker Lake
Anglers are catching crappie. Black Crappie – Good: Cast or vertical jig with colored tube jigs or a crappie minnow under a slip bobber fished in 4-8 feet of water.

Casey Lake (aka Hickory Hills Lake)
Anglers are catching crappie. Black Crappie – Good: Try colored tube jigs or a crappie minnow under a slip bobber fished off the dam and jetties.

Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City)
Anglers are catching channel catfish and a few walleyes on the Cedar River. Channel Catfish – Good: Try nightcrawlers. cut baits or stink baits fished on the bottom. Walleye – Fair: Use a jig tipped with a nightcrawler fished off the current breaks and near submerged wood structure.

George Wyth Lake
Anglers are catching crappie and largemouth bass. Black Crappie – Good: Cast or vertical jig colored tube jigs or a crappie minnow under a slip bobber fished in 4-8 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try topwater baits or spinnerbaits; best bite is early morning or late evening.

Lake Delhi|
Anglers are catching crappie. Fish early or late evening to avoid heavy boat traffic. Black Crappie – Good: Cast or vertical jig colored tube jigs or a crappie minnow under a slip bobber fished in 4-8 feet of water near submerged wood structure.

Maquoketa River (above Monticello)
Anglers are catching walleye and smallmouth bass on the Maquoketa River. Walleye – Fair: Cast and retrieve a jig tipped with a nightcrawler. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Cast jigs, spinnerbaits or crankbaits.

North Prairie Lake
Anglers are catching a few bass. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try topwater baits or spinnerbaits; best bite is early morning or late evening.

South Prairie Lake
Anglers are catching crappie. Black Crappie – Good: Cast or vertical jig colored tube jigs or a crappie minnow under a slip bobber fished in 4-8 feet of water along the edge of weed beds.

Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills)
Northern Pike
 – Excellent: Try live baits under a bobber or artificial spinnerbaits.

Interior rivers are low and providing fair to good angling opportunities for smallmouth bass, walleye and channel catfish. 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 7.9 feet and expected to remain stable. Water temperature is near 65 degrees. Yellow Perch – Good: Look for perch hanging above vegetation from 4 to 12 feet of water with jig and a minnow or piece of worm. Northern Pike – Good: Pike fishing has picked up again post-spawn. Try flashy spoons along openings of backwater lakes as fish move into the vegetation. Black Crappie – Good: 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: Try a small piece of worm under a bobber fished in areas with little to no current. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use 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. Try a flashy spinnerbait fished in the upper portion of backwater lakes. Smallmouth Bass – Good: Try spinners or crankbaits fished in main channel rock piles along the tips of islands. Freshwater Drum – Fair: Drum fishing is picking up in the main channel areas; use a crawler fished off the bottom.

Mississippi River Pool 10
Lynxville water level is 615.3 feet and is expected to remain stable this week. Water temperature is 66 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 – Good: Look for perch hanging above vegetation from 4 to 12 feet of water with jig and a minnow or piece of worm. Northern Pike – Good: 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 – Good: 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. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Try spinners or crankbaits fished in main channel rock piles along the tips of islands. Freshwater Drum – Fair: Drum fishing is picking up in the main channel areas; use a crawler fished off the bottom.

Mississippi River Pool 11
Water level is 5.8 feet at Guttenberg and is expected to remain stable this week. Water temperature is 58 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 – Good: 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 – Good: 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. Smallmouth Bass – Fair: Try spinners or crankbaits fished in main channel rock piles along the tips of islands. Freshwater Drum – Fair: Drum fishing is picking up in the main channel areas; use a crawler fished off the bottom.

Upper Mississippi River levels haven receded and are expected to remain low. Water clarity is good. Water temperatures near 60 degrees 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 5.9 feet at the Lock and Dam and 8.4 feet at the railroad bridge. The water temperature is around 64 degrees. Water clarity is good, but lots of flowing algae is limiting fishing at times. Walleye – Slow: A slow spring for walleyes, but the population structure of walleyes looks sound. Try crankbaits around exposed wing dams 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 – Good: 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. Bowfin are excellent fighting fish. Black Crappie – Slow: The cool weather set back the crappie movement into the shallow waters to spawn. Expect them to move into shallows this upcoming week. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Drum are on the bite.  Use an egg sinker and worm rig in moderate current areas; areas around boat launches can be productive. White Crappie – Slow.

Mississippi River Pool 13
The water level is 6.5 feet at the Bellevue Lock and Dam and is receding. Water temperature is around 64 degrees in main channel. The water clarity is good. All boat ramps are open and in good condition to launch. Paddlefish – No Report: Paddlefish season is closed for the year. Walleye – Slow: A slow spring for walleyes, but the population structure of walleyes looks sound. Try throwing crankbaits around newly exposed wing dams. 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 – Slow: Crappie moved out of the shallows after the week’s cool temperatures. Expect crappie to move into the shallows this week if temperatures warm. Smallmouth Bass – Slow: Fishing along rock lines with moderate current is usually the best method to catch smallmouth bass. White Crappie – Slow.

Mississippi River Pool 14
The water level at the Fulton Lock and Dam is receding and is 6.1 feet, 10.2 feet at Camanche and 5.1 feet at Le Claire. Water temperature is around 65 degrees in the main channel. Water clarity is good. 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. Try throwing cran baits around newly exposed rock wing dams. 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 fishing 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 – Excellent: 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: Catch lots of freshwater drum in near shore areas using an egg sinker and worm rig.  Black Crappie – No Report: Expect crappies to move back in the shallows very soon, especially when night temperatures warm up a bit. White Crappie – Slow: Just a few were picked up this week.  Expect them to move into the shallows to spawn this week.

Mississippi River Pool 15
The water level is 6.6 feet at Rock Island and is receding. The water temperature is near 65 degrees. Water clarity is good. Channel Catfish – Good: Cut shad bait works best for early season catfish. Freshwater Drum – Excellent: Catch lots of freshwater drum in near shore areas using an egg sinker and worm rig. Smallmouth Bass – No Report: Expect smallies to move in along the rock shoreline and the bite to pick up as the water temperature warms.

Water temperature is in the mid-60’s in the main channel. Water clarity is good. If you have angling questions please call the Bellevue Fisheries Station at 563-880-8781.


Mississippi River Pool 16
Tailwater stage is 6.57 feet at Lock and Dam 15 in the Quad Cities and is forecast to stay fairly steady over the weekend. Flood stage is 15 feet. Walleye – Fair: A few walleyes were caught in Sylvan Slough trolling crankbaits. White Crappie – Fair: Some crappies were caught in Sunset Marina. Try jigs and plastics or minnows under a bobber. White Bass – Good: White bass are being caught along the Davenport River front. Cast jigs and twister tails or crankbaits. Channel Catfish – Good: Some channel catfish are being caught along the main channel above Sunset Marina. Use nightcrawlers or leeches.

Mississippi River Pool 17
Tailwater stage is 5.58 feet at Lock and Dam 16 in Muscatine and is forecast to fall slightly over the weekend. Flood stage is 15 feet. Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Try trolling three-way rigs with crawlers or trolling crankbaits. Trolling crankbaits by GPC can produce fish at times as well. White Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies in the backwaters. Try jigs and plastics or minnows under a bobber fished around brush piles in Big Timber or Cleveland Slough.

Mississippi River Pool 18
Tailwater stage is 7.14 feet at Lock and Dam 17 at New Boston and is forecast to fall over the weekend. Flood stage is 15 feet. Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Try trolling three-way rigs with crawlers or trolling crankbaits. White Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies in the backwaters. Try jigs and plastics or minnows fished under a bobber around brush piles.

Mississippi River Pool 19
Tailwater stage is 4.88 feet at Lock and Dam 18 above Burlington and is forecast to fall over the weekend. We have not received any fishing report information for this pool this week. Walleye – No Report: Look for walleyes on the wing dams. Try trolling three-way rigs with crawlers or trolling crankbaits. White Crappie – No Report: Look for crappies in the backwaters. Use jigs and plastics or minnows under a bobber.

Main channel water clarity has been fair with the recent rains. Main channel water temperature is around 65 degrees.  If you have questions on fishing Pools 16-19 contact the Fairport Fish Hatchery at 563-263-5062.

SOUTHEAST

Big Hollow Lake
Water level is up with all the rain and is still working its way out of the lake. Water temperatures are 62 degrees. Water clarity is 26 inches. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly  small fish in shallow; bigger fish are out amongst the trees in about 10 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Good: Work the shallows on the north side for the feeding bass on a nice sunny day. Males are moving in shallow to set up nesting territories. Bluegill – Fair: Some decent fish are moving into the shallows to set up nests. They are around the islands and where trees are hanging down into the water.

Lake Belva Deer
Water temperature was 61 degrees on May 19. Water clarity is 8 feet. Curly leaf pondweed is coming in thick this year. Largemouth Bass – Good: Males are building nests and are showing signs of wear to the fins. Black Crappie – Slow: A few small fish are in shallow, but most have moved back out to deeper water. Bluegill – Fair: Some  spawning beds are active.

Lake Darling
The water temperature is 61 degrees. The water clarity is fair at 39 inches. Largemouth Bass – Good: More bass are moving in shallow. Males are starting to show signs of nesting (worn fins). Black Crappie – Slow: Immature fish and some males are in shallow. Everyone else has moved back out to 8-10 feet of water. Bluegill – Good: Lots of nice 8-inch fish (mostly males) have moved in shallow to the spawning beds.

Lost Grove Lake
Largemouth Bass – Good: Bass have moved in shallow to spawn. Look for males to be on the beds near stumps and rock piles in shallow water. Black Crappie – Fair: Mostly small fish in shallow. Everybody else is back out to deeper water. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills are making their nests. Find males in shallow staking out territories and building nests.

Skunk River (Rose Hill to Coppock)
The Skunk River has started to come back up after the recent rains; back up to about 2/3 bank full. Channel Catfish – Fair: Not a lot of boats out lately. Try nightcrawlers around the feeder streams like Honey Creek and Dutch Creek where some of the heavier rains hit.

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


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
Black Crappie – Slow: Use small jigs with live bait. Keep moving until you find active fish. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try spinnerbaits and crankbaits fished along the fishing jetties and other rocky shorelines.

Lake Wapello
Target largemouth bass with spinnerbaits or crankbaits fished around the submerged structure. Bluegill – Fair: Try small jigs around the shorelines and the submerged structure. Black Crappie – Slow: Use jig and minnows around the submerged structure.

Rathbun Reservoir
The current lake level is 905.82 feet msl; recreation pool is 904 feet msl. 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 – Fair: Try minnows over brush piles or rock piles in 10-15 feet of water. Crappie should move shallow as the water warms. Walleye – Fair: Anglers are catching walleye with jigs and minnows while crappie fishing.

Red Haw Lake
Largemouth Bass
 – Slow: Target areas along the shorelines and 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 has started. Catch crappies beginning to move shallow with live minnows under a float fished near rock and wood.

Boone District Farm Ponds
Largemouth Bass
 – Good: Cast slowly retrieved spinnerbaits, crankbaits and soft plastics. Catch bluegills and crappies on live bait under bobbers or slowly retrieve 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 – Good: Cast plastics near rock, rip-rap and wood in coves off the main lake and Whitebreast arm.

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
Bluegill – Good: Catch bluegill up to 8.5-inches with jigs fished under a bobber along the fishing jetties. Black Crappie – Fair: Use jigs fished near rocky shoreline areas or the fishing jetties to catch 8- to 10-inch crappie. Largemouth Bass – Good: Catch largemouth bass up to 21-inches with a jig fished near cedar tree brush piles or rocky shoreline areas.

Lake Anita
Black crappie are spawning 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 – Good: Largemouth bass are in the tree piles.

Lake Manawa
Manawa is a good destination for catfish. A few crappies are still being caught in the canals. Channel Catfish – Good: Channel catfish are actively feeding. Target catfish on wind-blown shorelines with shad sides. Black Crappie – Slow: Target black crappies in the canals this week. White Crappie – Slow: Cast minnows under a bobber in the canals and on the lake side. Walleye – Fair: Cast leech or crawler under a slip bobber around Tin Can dyke. The dredge cuts will also hold walleyes. Freshwater Drum – Good: Freshwater drum are not targeted often. They are very good to eat, easy to catch and put up a good fight. Cast a nightcrawler on the bottom with a small split shot or slip weight.

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

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 – Fair: 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. Start looking for bluegills around the underwater reefs. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Anglers report catching bass in the tree piles.

Orient Lake
Water clarity is good. Bluegill – Good: Bluegills have moved close to shore preparing to spawn. Move often, casting the shoreline to find fish. Black Crappie – Fair: Most crappies are being caught in the tree piles. A few are still close to shore spawning. Black Bullhead – Good: Cast nightcrawlers on the bottom to catch 2+-pound bullheads. If water is flowing through the tubes on the rock dyke, target that area.

Prairie Rose Lake
Water clarity is excellent. Bluegill – Fair: Bluegills have been in the tree piles, but will soon move closer to spawning habitat. Fish average 8.5-inches. Black Crappie – Fair: Fish along rocky shorelines and around underwater reefs 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 – Good: Catch 8- to 10-inch crappie with jigs fished near rocky shoreline areas or the fishing jetties. Largemouth Bass – Good: Catch largemouth bass up to 21-inches with a jig fished near cedar tree brush piles or rocky shoreline areas. Bluegill – Good: Catch bluegill up to 8.5-inches with jigs fished under a bobber along the fishing jetties.

Lake Icaria
Bluegill – Fair: Catch bluegill up to 8-inches with jigs fished along the fish mounds. Black Crappie – Fair: Try jigs fished along rocky shoreline areas to catch crappie up to 11-inches.

Little River Watershed Lake
Courtesy docks are in at main ramp and bait shop ramp. Largemouth Bass – Good: Try jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles to catch largemouth bass of all sizes. Black Crappie – Good: Catch crappie up to 10-inches with jigs fished along the fishing jetties or rocky shoreline areas. Bluegill – Good: Catch bluegill up to 8.5-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 roadbed or main lake points to catch walleye of all sizes. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Catch largemouth bass up to 18-inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or along rocky shoreline areas. Black Crappie – Slow: Catch crappie up to 11-inches with jigs fished along rocky shoreline areas. Bluegill – Fair: Try jigs fished near the dirt mounds or cedar tree brush piles to catch bluegill up to 8.5-inches.

Twelve Mile Creek Lake
The dock is in at main ramp. Black Crappie – Good: Catch crappie up to 9.5-inches with jigs fished near rocky shoreline areas. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Catch largemouth bass up to 21-inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or rocky areas. Bluegill – Good: Try jigs fished near rocky shoreline areas to catch bluegill up to 8-inches.

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

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