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GatorBait

Sconnie Sturgeon Extravaganza!!

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It's that time of year again, the big ol'shacks pulled off the ice holes, the spears are rigged up and the gaf's are sharpened. Thousands of anglers will be hitting the Winnebago system this upcoming weekend for Sturgeon Spearing.

Myself will be joining the crowd on Winnebago this year in hopes to sticking one through the 4x6 opening of my shack. We have plenty of ice, a bit too much snow, great clarity and plentiful numbers of sturgeon. Predictions are out for a 2-3day season which doesn't happen to often.

Check out my HSO Insider Blog for the step by step process on our rich tradition. Even my lil 5yr old girl will be helping us set up for the hunt this year.

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I understand that there's a "tradition" to spearing these guys in Wisconsin, and I understand that the DNR manages the spearing quotas so that they won't ever have an issue with total decimation of the sturgeon population. However, I still don't understand what makes a guy want to take a fish out of the lake that's been there for 75 to 100 years (or longer). Must taste REALLY good. Yeah, I understand that it's legal. Just not sure how that makes it a good idea.

I'm not a peta member or tree hugger. I eat plenty of animals. I can buy lots of food at Cub foods, and I can catch plenty of fish on the lake. Anything I do eat tends to be renewable in much less than 100 years. I selectively harvest plenty of fish to eat throughout the year -- crappies and walleyes mostly. Anything I do keep is of the size structure that it can be replaced naturally in less than 5 years. Those 20+ inch walleyes go back in the water, as do all sturgeon I catch. Crappies, pheasants, deer, ducks, geese, beef, pork, chicken. Yup, I can go through all the meats I eat, and none of them are older than me.

I guess I've just never seen a good explanation of why it's a good idea to take 100 year old fish out of the lake for food. Can you tell me? What is the big attraction to killing a fish that's older than you, just for food (and from what I hear, not all that great of food unless it is smoked, which makes anything taste good -- including carp).

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Good luck Gatorbait. I hope you guys have a great time:) I've never experienced it first hand, but a couple friends have said it is nothing short of a blast!

Aanderud, this has been taking place for many, many years. The lake can obviously sustain it, and the DNR keeps a close eye on the harvest and population.

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Conditions: On the big girl of Winnebago you will find anywhere from 22 to 27 inches of ice. Water clarity has been holding steady at 15 to 18ft respectively. Most cracks have been sitting still, there are plenty of bridges out to ensure safe travel. Please contact the bridge owners if you believe it's setup is deteriorating. With the amount of traffic this week, they get worked over pretty good.

Lots of fish reported in the Oshkosh area, onward south towards Wendt's. I'll have more updates after scouting the next 3 days coming up, along with some Lake Poygan and Butte Des Mortes updates. Stay Tuned!!

!!Caution!!

There are reports of a lot of drifts 3 to 4 feet high. Be safe, pick a good route, drive responsible. Bring a tow strap and a shovel. A friend of a friend snapped a torsion bar on his truck driving in the other day, which would have left him stranded had he not been in a group.

Stay safe my friends and Good Luck on the Ice!

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Aanderud, this has been taking place for many, many years. The lake can obviously sustain it, and the DNR keeps a close eye on the harvest and population.

As I said, I understand that it's an old tradition and that the DNR manages it so that it doesn't get totally out of hand. I was simply asking why it seems like a good idea to kill these nonrenewable fish.

Maybe it's fine, maybe it isn't. But, the fact that something is an old tradition doesn't necessarily make it a good idea or give it immunity to scrutiny. What's the big draw?

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Why is it legal to keep a 50" muskie?.......30" walleye?.......22" bass?........ from any fishery that allows it?

They are taking mature fish out of a fishery that can handle the pressure and sustain quality w/numbers. Get over it...... ain't exactly the same as carver county....

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Why is it legal to keep a 50" muskie?.......30" walleye?.......22" bass?........ from any fishery that allows it?

They are taking mature fish out of a fishery that can handle the pressure and sustain quality w/numbers. Get over it...... ain't exactly the same as carver county....

I didn't ask why it was LEGAL. I asked why people get so excited about killing 100 year old fish.

To use your analagy -- nobody that I know think it's exciting to kill and eat a 50 inch muskie. Or a 22 inch bass. Or a 32 inch walleye. If people were posting threads about killing and eating 32 inch walleyes and 50 inch muskies, I think you'd get a similar question. (and I might add that NONE of these walleyes/muskies/bass would be over 20 years old -- they're all renewable, and yet they are STILL highly respected by their fishermen, for the most part. As opposed to these 100 year old dinosaur sturgeon).

So, you still didn't answer the question -- unless your answe was "it's exciting and a great idea simply because it's legal". I can tell you hundreds of things that are LEGAL that aren't necessarily a good idea.

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You have a viable point, but as we talk with DNR Biologists, who's only job every day is to help the sturgeon population will tell you that the numbers of sturgeon available in our system will never be threatened by spearing seasons due to the management efforts.

The population numbers are estimated at over 50,000 adult female/male sturgeon. This doesn't include juveniles. Over the 20yrs that I've been doing this, there never has been a reason to think that we won't have this sport in 50yrs. They put so much science/study/money into this that it would take a specie based disease to wipe them out.

So we look at spearer's. This year there are 11,500 liscenses sold. Harvest caps are set at 320 Juv Females, 745 Adult Females, 960 Adult Males. Hitting just one of those marks, or within a certain percentage by days end will trigger a season closure. In 2013, there were only 306 fish taken in the full 16 day season. Your success rate as you can tell by the numbers is extremely low. I speared 16yrs before I successfully speared my first fish. And it's not uncommon to hear that from others.

A seperate spearing lottery is setup for Lake Poygan and Lake Butte Des Mortes. Harvest caps are set at 80 Juv Females 83 Adult Females and 240 Adult Males. There are only 500 liscenses available which are ran through a point/lottery system. About a 7yr wait for this tag. This seperatism is due to the shallow waters, clearer water and smaller lakes. They used to open these lakes everyother 5yrs, well everyone obviously chose to spear here due to those conditions which in turn made for a huge harvest. So, yet again, another mangement strategy that was made and is working well. Regulations set in place are to limit the spearing of only 5% or less of the estimated population. This has evidently helped fish reach a much older age and larger size.

There is plenty of studies on the net about this process that gets into great detail. I have no problems throwing a spear at a dinosaur. It's been in my family since the 50's and would never turn it down. It's similar to deer hunting, you get that buck fever, you are throwing a spear at fish in the water that you know isn't a piece of cake and you are doing your part to help manage the population. And for taste, the younger fish taste well in the deep frier and is a nice white flaky meat. The problem with the older ones is the amount of fat on them, which if you don't spend hours removing it, it taints the meat horribly. Hence why most just smoke them. Hope this helps with your questions.

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Neat-o

That's a really intelligent response. I guess the answer speaks for itself. You first compared sturgeon to walleyes and muskies, which are 5x more renewable than sturgeon. Then when point it out, this is your only response?

I also pointed out that if there was a thread in the MN central forum, or the WI forum, or the muskie forum, or the bass forum celebrating the killing/eating of trophy bass/muskies/walleyes (which YOU condoned above simply based on the legality), you have no response to that either?

I was HOPING to see a better rationale, but I guess this is the quality of response I actually EXPECTED to see.

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First off, I'd like to say THANK YOU GatorBait for the intelligent response. All of this looks like pretty valid reasons to spear.

You have a viable point

...

the numbers of sturgeon available in our system will never be threatened by spearing seasons due to the management efforts.

...

...

They put so much science/study/money into this that it would take a specie based disease to wipe them out.

...

So we look at spearer's. This year there are 11,500 liscenses sold. Harvest caps are set at 320 Juv Females, 745 Adult Females, 960 Adult Males. Hitting just one of those marks, or within a certain percentage by days end will trigger a season closure. In 2013, there were only 306 fish taken in the full 16 day season. Your success rate as you can tell by the numbers is extremely low. I speared 16yrs before I successfully speared my first fish. And it's not uncommon to hear that from others.

...

...

There are only 500 liscenses available which are ran through a point/lottery system. About a 7yr wait for this tag. This seperatism is due to the shallow waters, clearer water and smaller lakes.

...

So, yet again, another mangement strategy that was made and is working well.

...

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Or are you claiming that they reach an older age now versus if they would not have regulations at all. So, SOME regulation is good. What's to say more regulation wouldn't be better?

Yes, because of the regulations put in place within the last 15yrs, we have been able to allow these fish grow older and bigger in size. To be honest, more regulations right now would probably kill the sport all together. We as a group work and respect the biologists and want to do what we can to keep this sport alive. They ask us what we would like to see done and they take that into consideration greatly.

If you look at the vast area the Winnebago system covers, the acreage of lakes and 100's of miles of rivers that are connected, there are many fish that will never be seen by a human.

For example:

Spearing used to be 24hr/day for the 16day season. It is now 6hrs, 7am-1pm. Thus the use of lights under water were banned. Instead of 384 possible hours to spear, you now only have 96hrs available.

Harvest totals are based of past year harvest numbers and all the science that goes into it. Some years it's more, like this year due to very low number last year, other years it's much lower, which will probably be next year. You never hear a moan about it.

The use of potato peels, corn, silt, anything that you could put down the hole to brighten the bottom up has been banned. If you can't bring it out of the hole it can't go down. Some use a cross or T section of pvc pipe to help assist with bottom recognition. The above mentioned helped see fish a lot easier than if you didn't have anything at all.

SturgeonGuard was implemented which volunteers line the riverbanks of areas susceptible to poachers during their spawning season. A great strategy, highly publicized and effective tool to ensure our fish are safe.

To answer your last part about being skeptical if all this is helping. A chart that was put together during a study by our Biologist shows a steady incline since 1955 when the tracking all started. 1955 you were looking at roughly 7,000 fish which as of 1995 was at 45,000. That tells me, something is being done correctly to obtain a steady population incline like that. But again, there are so many things that are being done to ensure it's happening. Spearing and reg's are just the tip of the iceberg.

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Looks like she picked up a few extra little ones along the way.  
    • NORTHWEST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Arrowhead Lake Bluegill - Fair: Cast a small jig fished under a bobber near submerged structure along shore in 5-10 feet of water. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Cast traditional bass lures near submerged woody structure throughout the lake and along weed lines in the southern part of the lake.  Black Hawk Lake Surface water temperatures are around 80 degrees. Yellow Perch - Slow. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast traditional bass lures and plastics along shore. You can catch fish anywhere around the lake, but some of the best areas are Ice House point shoreline, inlet bay and bridge area near the outlet, and along Gunshot Hill. Walleye - Slow. Channel Catfish - Fair:Try cut bait, dip baits or crankbaits fished near shore. Bluegill – Fair. Brushy Creek Lake Surface water temperatures are in the upper 70's. There is around 10 feet of water clarity. Black Crappie - Fair: Use a small piece of crawler or minnow on a jig either drifting or fished under a bobber near submerged woody structure. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Throw traditional bass lures, plastics or weedless lures near submerged structure and along weed lines. Yellow Perch - Slow. Walleye – Slow. Bluegill - Fair.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Brushy Creek Lake has a low-density population of larger channel catfish. Target these larger fish near shore with rocky structure using a variety of cut baits and crankbaits. North Twin Lake Water temperature is in the low 80's. Water clarity is around 2 feet. Yellow Bass - Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a piece of crawler or waxworm fished under a small bobber in 3-6 feet of water near shore. If fishing from boat, you may need to move around to stay on top of fish. Yellow bass are 6-10 inches long. Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish are numerous in North Twin Lake. Use cut baits and crankbaits near shore with rocky structure. Bluegill - Slow: Try small jigs tipped with a crawler fished under a bobber along shore near vegetation edges.  Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake) Storm Lake has a daily limit of 3 walleye, and all 17- to 22-inch walleye must be released; no more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Walleye - Fair: Drift with leeches or crawlers along the dredge cuts and troll crankbaits in the main lake. White Bass - Fair: Pick up white bass from shore and in the main like while trolling. Use twisters, crawlers or crankbaits in the marina, near the inlet and north and east shores in the main lake. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try a variety of dip baits, cut baits and crankbaits fished near shore and anywhere with rocky structure. Water temperatures are in the lower 80's in the Black Hawk District. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638. Beeds Lake Bluegill – Good: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near the shore. Black Crappie – Slow. Yellow Bass – Fair. Clear Lake The water temperature is in the low 80's. Walleye - Good: Anglers are catching walleyes drift fishing a jig and crawler near vegetation. Try slip bobber fishing or jigging a leech on the rock reefs. Yellow Bass – Slow: The best bite is at first light. Channel Catfish - Good: Float a crawler under a bobber along a rocky shoreline. Boat anglers should try bouncing a jig and crawler on the rock reefs. Crystal Lake Black Crappie - Fair: Drift fish a minnow or small jig near the dredge cut. Largemouth Bass - Good. Bluegill - Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber near the shore. Lake Cornelia Bluegill - Fair: Channel Catfish - Fair: Try a frog fished along the rocky shoreline. Lower Pine Lake Popular fishing spots get crowded in the afternoon; arrive early to avoid crowds.  Don’t park along the west side of the highway.  If the boat trailer parking lot is full, try Upper Pine Lake. Bluegill - Good: Shore anglers are catching good numbers of 4 to 7-inch fish. Black Crappie – Fair. Largemouth Bass – Good. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try a crawler or live bait near the spillway. Silver Lake (Worth) Bluegill - Fair: Try a small piece of worm fished below a bobber in the open areas of the vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Upper Pine Lake Bluegill - Good: Shore anglers are catching good numbers of 4 to 7-inch fish. Largemouth Bass – Good. Black Crappie - Fair. 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. The water temperature is 80 degrees. There is a great panfish bite that is moving further out into deeper water post-spawn. Bluegill – Excellent: Large schools are moving into the shallows to bed and can easily be caught around hoists and docks. Black Crappie – Fair. Yellow Perch – Good: A good open water bite has started to pick up. Lake Pahoja Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs tipped with waxworms. Black Crappie - Good: Try small jigs tipped with waxworms. Largemouth Bass - Good: Use rubber worms or other slow-moving jigs. Lost Island Lake Yellow Perch – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Silver Lake (Dickinson) Walleye – Good. Spirit Lake The walleye season is open. A great walleye and yellow perch bite has been seen lately with many yellows over 10 inches being caught. The water temperature is 79 degrees. Bluegill - Good: Schools are starting to move deeper off shore post-spawn. Walleye - Good: A fairly good bite lately can also be seen from shore. Try bottom bouncers or crankbaits to cover more water. Black Bullhead - Fair: Anglers have been successful at the north grade. Yellow Perch - Good: The bite has really picked up; fish are a little deeper than what can be easily fished from shore. Try small humps in the main basin or weed edges.  West Okoboji Lake The walleye season is open. The water temperature is 80 degrees. The panfish bite has been great. Bluegill - Good: Schools are starting to move deeper off shore. Try fishing in about 16 feet of water in the weeds or weed lines. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Find smallmouth bass on rock piles or on the points.. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Find largemouth bass on the weed lines. Yellow Perch - Fair: Schools have started to move deeper off shore. Iowa Great Lake water temperatures have warmed up up substantially and are currently 79 degrees or warmer. This week’s extended forecast calls for temperatures ranging from the upper 70's to upper 80's. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.
    • NORTHEAST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Cedar River (above Nashua) Repairs to the Nashua dam continue as water levels and flows drop. Water levels are falling. Clarity is improving. Use caution; underwater hazards may have moved. Go to the USGS Current Conditions website for more information on water levels. Channel Catfish - Good: Use chicken liver and stinkbaits or dead chub fished on the bottom out of current. Walleye - Fair: Use a jig tipped with a bright plastic tail for quick action. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Anglers are finding quite a few small ones. Use a jig tipped with natural colored twister tails and crank or spinnerbaits for bass. Decorah District Streams Wild parsnip is coming on strong. Avoid touching this plant; it causes painful blisters. All trout stream stockings are unannounced due to COVID-19 precautions. Due to marginal water temperatures in July and August on a few streams, stocking catchable size trout is temporarily discontinued. Hatchery grounds are open to the public, but feeders and other conveniences are temporarily closed. Brook Trout - Good: When fishing private property open to angling, leave that property as was or better by picking up trash. Close gates if you opened them; be considerate. Brown Trout - Good: More terrestrials are out. Use beetles or other bright flies fished along grassed edges. Afternoon hatches of caddis and may flies have been slow. Pheasant tailed nymphs and bead headed midges work well. Use hair jigs or spinners for aggressive fish. Rainbow Trout - Excellent:Try a worm or cheese floated through a pool under a bobber. Use an ultra-light pole and reel for fun action. Try small crappie or bluegill jigs. Lake Hendricks Aquatic vegetation is coming on strong. Early morning and evening bite are best. Black Crappie - Slow: Find crappie suspended in deeper water around structure. Use a minnow or small lure drifting over structure. Bluegill - Fair: Try a small piece of worm on a hook under a small bobber. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use topwater lures or weedless hooks fished along the weed edges.Channel Catfish - Good: With warmer water temperatures, try cheese or stinkbaits. Nightcrawlers will work. Lake Meyer Water clarity is excellent. Filamentous algae mats are covering shallow water. Fish early morning and evening when shadows aren't cast on the water. Black Crappie - Slow: Use a small spinnerbait tossed along a steep depth change. Bluegill - Fair: Try a small piece of worm fished under a bobber. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use a jig tipped with a twister tail or worm fished along the shore. Channel Catfish - Fair: Use a nightcrawler fished on the bottom near stumps or other structure. Also try chicken liver or cheese baits. Turkey River (above Clermont) Water levels are falling with improved clarity. Go to the USGS Current Conditions website for more information on water levels. Walleye - Fair: Find walleye in deeper holes around brush piles. Toss a jig tipped with a twister tail near a brush pile.  Upper Iowa River (above Decorah) Water levels are falling with improved clarity. Current remains strong. Water hazards may have moved. Walleye - Fair: Flip a jig with twister tail along a brush pile or rock ledge. White Sucker - Slow: Try a hook tipped with a nightcrawler fished on the bottom. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Toss a small crankbait along a current break or rock ledge. Upper Iowa River (below Decorah) Water levels are falling with improved clarity. Strong current; water hazards and stream conditions change fast. Walleye - Fair: Find walleye along current breaks or around log jams. White Sucker - Slow: Try a hook tipped with a nightcrawler fished on the bottom.  Volga Lake Best bite is early morning or just before dark. Water clarity is 6-8 inches due to an algae bloom. Bluegill - Slow: Use a small hook tipped with waxworm or small piece of nightcrawler fished around brush piles and rocky shores. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Use a jig tipped with a ringworm or twister tail. Channel Catfish - Good: Try a nightcrawler, cheese bait or chicken livers fished on the bottom. Best catfishing lake around. Black Crappie - Slow: Use a minnow under a bobber along a rocky shoreline or around brush piles. Area rivers and streams water levels continue to fall, but flows remain high. Water clarity is much improved. Expect a hot, humid weekend with temperatures in the upper 80's for highs and upper 60's for lows. 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, crappie and channel catfish. Some sorting may be needed on bluegill; crappie and catfish angling is best early morning or late evening. Largemouth Bass - Good: Cast crankbaits, spinnerbaits, topwater and plastics. Black Crappie - Good: Cast and retrieve colored tube jigs. Bluegill - Good: Try a small piece of worm under a bobber with a small split shot sinker and small hook. Channel Catfish - Good: Cast dead cut baits, chicken livers or stinkbait on the bottom of the lake; early morning or later evening bite is best. Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Best success is channel catfish on the Cedar River. Channel Catfish - Fair: Cast dead cut baits, chicken livers or stinkbait on the bottom of the lake; early morning or later evening bite is best. George Wyth Lake Good reports of largemouth bass being caught on George Wyth Lake. Newly placed habitat in and around the floating pier may provide success. Largemouth Bass - Good: Cast crankbaits, spinnerbaits, topwater and plastics. Maquoketa River (above Monticello) Anglers are catching walleye and smallmouth bass on the Maquoketa River. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Cast spinnerbaits or crankbaits. Walleye - Fair: Cast crankbaits or fishing a half of a crawler on a jig and plastic rig. Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock) We received no information about fishing on this waterbody this week. Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills) We received no information about fishing on this waterbody this week. Interior rivers continue to drop and are providing some catches of smallmouth bass and walleye. Lakes in and around Cedar Falls/Waterloo area are providing some catches of largemouth bass. Trout streams remain in excellent condition, but potential heavy thunderstorms are predicted for this evening. All three trout hatcheries remain closed. Call the Manchester Hatchery at 563-927-3276 for more information.   MISSISSIPPI RIVER FISHING REPORTS Mississippi River Pool 9 River level is 9.5 feet at Lansing with a fall predicted this week. Water temperature is 83 degrees. New Albin Army road is reopened. Hwy 82, Lansing Bridge is closed. Use caution at ramps during low water. Lansing Village Creek is shallow near the creek mouth. Heytman's Landing is accessible with shallow drive boats only. Walleye - Good: Walleyes are biting on crankbaits on wing dams and channel border structure. Northern Pike - Good: Try in areas of colder streams and springs entering the Mississippi River. Yellow Perch - Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished just off the bottom near shorelines with slight current. Black Crappie - Good: Crappies are in about 10 feet of water. Use a minnow under a bobber in areas with less current in backwaters or side channels. Largemouth Bass - Good: Bass will be on pre-spawn bite as temperatures rise. Cast plastics or blade baits in backwater lakes. Smallmouth Bass - Excellent: Try spinnerbaits fished in rock piles at the tip of the islands on main channel borders. Shovelnose sturgeon - Fair: Some shovelnose are being picked up with a crawler fished off the bottom in main channel areas. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Flathead bite has slowed, but some are being caught on shiners or a small bluegill for bait. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Try nightcrawlers or cut bait fished off the bottom in deeper side channel areas. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are spawning. Use light tackle tipped with small piece of worm along the shorelines. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Use a crawler fished on the bottom along current breaks. Mississippi River Pool 10 River level is 618.2 feet at Lynxville and is expected to fall this week. Water temperature is 84 degrees. Sny Magill access is open. Walleye - Good: Walleyes are biting on crankbaits on wing dams and channel border structure. Northern Pike - Excellent: Try in areas of colder streams and springs entering the Mississippi River. Yellow Perch - Excellent: Use a small piece of crawler fished just off the bottom near shorelines with slight current. Black Crappie - Good: Crappies are in 8-10 feet of water. Use a minnow under a bobber in areas near current breaks in backwaters and side channels. Largemouth Bass - Good: Bass will be on pre-spawn bite as temperatures rise. Cast plastics or blade baits in backwater lakes. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Try spinnerbaits fished in rock piles at the tip of the islands on main channel borders. Shovelnose sturgeon - Good: Some shovelnose are being picked up using a crawler fished off the bottom in main channel areas. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Flathead bite has slowed, but some are still being caught on shiners or a small bluegill for bait. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Try nightcrawlers or cut bait fished off the bottom in deeper side channel areas.  Bluegill - Excellent: Bluegills are spawning. Use light tackle tipped with small piece of worm along the shorelines. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Try a crawler fished on the bottom along current breaks. Mississippi River Pool 11 River level is 9.7 feet at Guttenberg and is predicted to fall to 8 feet this week. Water temperature is in the mid 80's. Walleye - Good: Walleyes are biting on crankbaits on wing dams and channel border structure. Northern Pike - Excellent: Try in areas of colder streams and springs entering the Mississippi River. Yellow Perch - Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished just off the bottom near shorelines with slight current. Black Crappie - Good: Crappies are in about 10 feet of water. Use a minnow under a bobber in areas with less current in backwaters and side channels. Largemouth Bass - Good: Bass will be on pre-spawn bite as temperatures rise. Cast plastics or blade baits in backwater lakes. Smallmouth Bass - Excellent: Try spinnerbaits fished in rock piles at the tip of the islands on main channel borders. Shovelnose sturgeon - Fair: Some shovelnose are being picked up with a crawler fished off the bottom in main channel areas. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Flathead bite has slowed, but some are still being caught on shiners or a small bluegill for bait. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Try nightcrawlers or cut bait fished off the bottom in deeper side channel areas. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are spawning. Use light tackle tipped with small piece of worm along the shorelines. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Try a crawler fished on the bottom along current breaks. Upper Mississippi River levels are predicted to fall this week. Water clarity is good. Walleye slot length limits now apply on the entire Mississippi River. All walleyes less than 15 inches long and between 20-27 inches long must be released immediately. Only one walleye greater than 27 inches can be kept. Combined walleye/sauger daily harvest limit of 6 and possession of 12.   Mississippi River Pool 12 Water levels are stable, but will start to recede slightly later this week. The water level is near 9.3 feet at the Dubuque Lock and Dam and 11.5 feet at the RR bridge.The water temperature is around 86 degrees. The water clarity is good. Northern Pike - Excellent: Flashy spinners in warm sun filled waters might trigger these predators. Bluegill - Good: Most of the spawning is over, but some bluegills are still being reported in shallow backwater areas. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Lots of anglers are switching to prepared stinkbaits. Some catfish have started to move along the rock lines to prepare for spawning. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on an egg sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Largemouth Bass - Good: Lots of bass are being taken off lily pad areas on spinnerbaits or frog imitation lures. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Some smallies have moved in along the rock piles; use flashy spoons or crankbaits. Mississippi River Pool 13 Water level is 10.4 feet at the Bellevue Lock and Dam and is expected to recede later this week. The water temperature is 86 degrees. The water is clear. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Some cats have moved along rock lines. Anglers are switching to prepared stinkbaits. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on a sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Northern Pike - Excellent: Try flashy spinners fished along old weed edges and rock shorelines. Largemouth Bass - Excellent: Lots of bass are being taken off lily pad areas on spinnerbaits or frog imitation lures. Bluegill - Good: Try fishing around brush piles in larger sloughs with moderate current. Flathead Catfish - Good: Use live fish for bait. Lots of trot lines are being set.  Mississippi River Pool 14 The water level is 9.7 feet at the Fulton Lock and Dam, 12.5 feet at Camanche and 7.2 feet at LeClaire. Water temperature is 87 degrees. Water clarity is fair. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Anglers are switching to prepared stinkbaits. Look for channel cats to move along the rock lines. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on a worm sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Largemouth Bass - Good: : Lots of bass are being taken off lily pad areas on spinnerbaits or frog imitation lures. Northern Pike - Good: Use flashy spinners along backwater shorelines or in the tailwaters for this aggressive fish. Flathead Catfish - Good: Try large live bait to catch big flathead catfish. Bluegill - Good: Find bluegills near the mouths of large backwater areas, usually around brush piles. Mississippi River Pool 15 Water level is around 10.1 feet at Rock Island and is stable. Expect water levels to recede slightly later in the week. The water temperature is 87 degrees; water clarity is good. Freshwater Drum - Good: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on a worm sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Channel cats are readily biting on cut bait and prepared baits. Flathead Catfish - Good: Try live bait around brush piles or in the tailwater area. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Fish the rocky habitats along the channel edge. Water level is expected to slowly recede later in the week.Water temperature has warmed into the upper 80's throughout the district. If you have any fishing questions, please contact the Bellevue Fisheries Station 563-880-8781.
    • SOUTHEAST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Big Hollow Lake Hot weather is keeping angler numbers down. Water temperature in the 80's. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Going to go deep; work some of the edges of the brush piles in 5 to 7 feet of water earlier in the morning. Bluegill - Fair: Most bluegills have moved off the beds and are out in 6 to 8 feet of water. Iowa River (Columbus Junction to Mississippi River Finally below bank full level. Forecast to drop only another foot or so over the next week. Lake Belva Deer Water temperature is in the mid to upper 80's. Early morning bite is best; most anglers are gone by 9 am.  Largemouth Bass - Fair: Summer patterns have set up. Try early in the shallows; most of the day they are out in deeper water. Bluegill - Fair: Move out to the deeper water (16 to 18 feet) out around the trees. Black Crappie - Fair: Try slow trolling at the lower end of the lake early in the morning.  Lake Darling The water has tried to clear up; it is now starting to turn green. Water temperature is in the mid to upper 80's. Monday afternoon at 3 pm it hit 94 degrees at the surface.   Largemouth Bass - Slow: The hot weather pushed them out into deeper water. Early morning before it heats up is best. Bluegill - Fair: Start out in the 5 to 7 feet of water over the rock piles; don’t be surprised if you end up in 10 to 12 feet of water. Black Crappie - Slow: Anglers are picking up a few crappies slowly drift trolling in 10 to 12 feet of water; bite will improve as the water clears. Lost Grove Lake Water temperatures are in the mid-80's. Water clarity is still good with a little green color; weed beds are dying back. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Still catching a few bass in shallow early in the morning. The evening bite has slowed since the water hasn't started cooling off by then. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegill have moved to deeper water for the summer to get away from the heat. Start looking in 10 to 15 feet of water in the trees; don’t be surprised if you end up out in 15 to 20 feet of water.   Skunk River (Rose Hill to Coppock) The water level stabilized at just under half bank full. Channel Catfish - Fair: The hot weather has kept a lot of anglers off the river this week. The grass frogs are really starting to come out  with the heavy dew in the mornings; good time to try a few for fish bait. For more information on the above lakes, call the Lake Darling Fisheries Office at 319-694-2430.   Lake Miami Bluegill - Fair: Try small jigs around the fishing jetties. Drift fishing from a boat can also produce some bluegills this time of year. Lake Wapello Largemouth Bass - Fair: Try topwater lures early and late in the day. Target cedar tree piles. Rathbun Reservoir The current lake level is 904.52 msl. Normal operating elevation is 904.0 msl. Lake Rathbun has zebra mussels, so make sure to properly drain, clean, and dry equipment before transporting to another waterbody. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Try vertically jigging around rock piles and submerged points. Red Haw Lake Largemouth Bass - Fair: Try topwater lures early and late in the day. Use spinnerbaits and crankbaits during the hotter parts of the day. Bluegill - Slow: Try drifting in the main part of the lake with nightcrawlers. The district includes Appanoose, Davis, Lucas, Mahaska, Monroe, Wapello, Wayne and Van Buren counties. Contact the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406 with questions about fishing in south central Iowa.  
    • SOUTHWEST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Big Creek Lake Walleye - Slow: Troll live bait rigs or crankbaits at depths of 15 feet or less in the upper half of the lake. Black Crappie - Fair: Drift or troll jigs with twister or paddle tails down 3 to 6 feet in the upper half of the lake. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) - Fair: Cast or troll shad imitating spoons, crankbaits or plastics. Look for schools of young shad breaking the surface of the water to find feeding wipers. Des Moines River (Saylorville to Red Rock) Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish and flathead catfish are being caught. Try live bait, stinkbait and crawlers. Des Moines River (Stratford to Saylorville Lake) Channel Catfish - Good: Try stinkbaits or cut bait fished in or just upstream of tree falls. Don Williams Lake Black Crappie - Fair: Drift or troll panfish jigs out a little deeper on the edges of the treefalls and over sunken pallets. Most crappies are 8.5 to 10 inches. Bluegill - Good: Catch spawning bluegills shallow fishing small jigs tipped with nightcrawlers under a bobber. For more information on Central Iowa lakes and rivers, call Ben Dodd at 641-891-3795 or Andy Otting at 515-204-5885. Lake Anita Crappies were caught around brush piles and the road beds this week. Bluegills have moved into a summer pattern. Bluegill - Fair: Drift or troll small jigs tipped with berkly or nightcrawlers in 6 to 8 feet of water. Black Crappie - Slow: Find crappie around tree piles and along the two road beds in the lake. Largemouth Bass - Good: Anita has a good bass population. Find fish along vegetation edges and around tree piles.  Lake Manawa Walleyes are being picked up around the dredge cuts and the west shore. Channel catfish are being caught on the west shore. Be aware of signs marking the dredge pipe in the lake. Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish are close to shore. Fish are all sizes in the lake. White Crappie - Fair: A few large white crappies are being caught on the west shore. Walleye - Fair: A few anglers are having good success trolling crankbaits using planner boards. Don't overlook running a crawler through the dredge cuts.  Littlefield Lake Littlefield has a good ring of aquatic vegetation. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills have moved around the cedar tree piles in the lake. Largemouth Bass - Good: There is a large number of 12 to 14 inch fish in the lake. Channel Catfish - Good: Cast cut or stinkbait along the dam to catch 2-4 pound channel catfish. Prairie Rose Lake Anglers report catching channel catfish around the reefs. Water temperature is 80 degrees. Bluegill - Slow: Bluegills have moved off the spawning beds and can be caught around tree piles or drifting open water areas of the lake. Channel Catfish - Good: Channel catfish are being caught around the jetties and underwater reefs. Fish average 2 to 4 pounds. Largemouth Bass - Good: A large population of 12 to 14 inch bass offer fun catch and release fishing.  Viking Lake Viking Lake is six feet low. Black Crappie - Fair: Black crappies are being caught in brush piles. Cast a minnow under a bobber to catch 9 to 12 inch crappie. Largemouth Bass - Good: Anglers are catching bass in tree piles using plastics. For more information on lakes in the Southwest District call the Cold Springs office at 712-769-2587. Green Valley Lake Largemouth Bass - Slow: Use jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles to catch largemouth bass up to 20 inches. Black Crappie - Slow: Catch crappie up to 9 inches with jigs tipped with live bait fished near cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill - Slow: Catch bluegill up to 7.5 inches with jigs tipped with live bait fished near the fishing jetties or cedar tree brush piles.  Lake Icaria Bluegill - Slow: Catch bluegill of all sizes with nightcrawlers fished under a bobber along the fish mounds. Channel Catfish - Good: Use nightcrawlers fished along rocky shoreline areas to catch channel catfish of all sizes. Little River Watershed Lake Bluegill - Slow: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished near cedar tree brush piles to catch bluegill up to 8.5 inches. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Catch largemouth bass up to 20 inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or along weed lines.  Three Mile Lake Walleye - Slow: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished along the creek channels to catch walleyes up to 22 inches. Black Crappie - Slow: Catch crappies up to 10 inches with jigs tipped with a minnow fished along the flooded timber. Bluegill - Fair: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished near cedar tree brush piles to catch bluegill of all sizes. Twelve Mile Creek Lake Black Crappie - Slow: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished along cedar tree brush piles or creek channels to catch crappie up to 11 inches. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Catch largemouth bass up to 20 inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill - Slow: Catch bluegill of all sizes with jigs tipped with live bait fished along the weed line or cedar tree brush piles. Water temperature in most Mount Ayr district lakes is in the low to mid-80's. For more information, contact the Mount Ayr Fisheries office at 641-464-3108.
    • NORTHWEST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Arrowhead Lake Bluegill - Fair: Cast a small jig fished under a bobber near submerged structure along shore in 5-10 feet of water. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Cast traditional bass lures near submerged woody structure throughout the lake and along weed lines in the southern part of the lake.  Black Hawk Lake Surface water temperatures are around 80 degrees. Yellow Perch - Slow. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Cast traditional bass lures and plastics along shore. You can catch fish anywhere around the lake, but some of the best areas are Ice House point shoreline, inlet bay and bridge area near the outlet, and along Gunshot Hill. Walleye - Slow. Channel Catfish - Fair:Try cut bait, dip baits or crankbaits fished near shore. Bluegill – Fair. Brushy Creek Lake Surface water temperatures are in the upper 70's. There is around 10 feet of water clarity. Black Crappie - Fair: Use a small piece of crawler or minnow on a jig either drifting or fished under a bobber near submerged woody structure. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Throw traditional bass lures, plastics or weedless lures near submerged structure and along weed lines. Yellow Perch - Slow. Walleye – Slow. Bluegill - Fair.  Channel Catfish - Fair: Brushy Creek Lake has a low-density population of larger channel catfish. Target these larger fish near shore with rocky structure using a variety of cut baits and crankbaits. North Twin Lake Water temperature is in the low 80's. Water clarity is around 2 feet. Yellow Bass - Fair: Use a small jig tipped with a piece of crawler or waxworm fished under a small bobber in 3-6 feet of water near shore. If fishing from boat, you may need to move around to stay on top of fish. Yellow bass are 6-10 inches long. Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish are numerous in North Twin Lake. Use cut baits and crankbaits near shore with rocky structure. Bluegill - Slow: Try small jigs tipped with a crawler fished under a bobber along shore near vegetation edges.  Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake) Storm Lake has a daily limit of 3 walleye, and all 17- to 22-inch walleye must be released; no more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Walleye - Fair: Drift with leeches or crawlers along the dredge cuts and troll crankbaits in the main lake. White Bass - Fair: Pick up white bass from shore and in the main like while trolling. Use twisters, crawlers or crankbaits in the marina, near the inlet and north and east shores in the main lake. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try a variety of dip baits, cut baits and crankbaits fished near shore and anywhere with rocky structure. Water temperatures are in the lower 80's in the Black Hawk District. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638. Beeds Lake Bluegill – Good: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber near the shore. Black Crappie – Slow. Yellow Bass – Fair. Clear Lake The water temperature is in the low 80's. Walleye - Good: Anglers are catching walleyes drift fishing a jig and crawler near vegetation. Try slip bobber fishing or jigging a leech on the rock reefs. Yellow Bass – Slow: The best bite is at first light. Channel Catfish - Good: Float a crawler under a bobber along a rocky shoreline. Boat anglers should try bouncing a jig and crawler on the rock reefs. Crystal Lake Black Crappie - Fair: Drift fish a minnow or small jig near the dredge cut. Largemouth Bass - Good. Bluegill - Fair: Try a small piece of crawler under a bobber near the shore. Lake Cornelia Bluegill - Fair: Channel Catfish - Fair: Try a frog fished along the rocky shoreline. Lower Pine Lake Popular fishing spots get crowded in the afternoon; arrive early to avoid crowds.  Don’t park along the west side of the highway.  If the boat trailer parking lot is full, try Upper Pine Lake. Bluegill - Good: Shore anglers are catching good numbers of 4 to 7-inch fish. Black Crappie – Fair. Largemouth Bass – Good. Channel Catfish - Fair: Try a crawler or live bait near the spillway. Silver Lake (Worth) Bluegill - Fair: Try a small piece of worm fished below a bobber in the open areas of the vegetation. Largemouth Bass – Fair. Upper Pine Lake Bluegill - Good: Shore anglers are catching good numbers of 4 to 7-inch fish. Largemouth Bass – Good. Black Crappie - Fair. 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. The water temperature is 80 degrees. There is a great panfish bite that is moving further out into deeper water post-spawn. Bluegill – Excellent: Large schools are moving into the shallows to bed and can easily be caught around hoists and docks. Black Crappie – Fair. Yellow Perch – Good: A good open water bite has started to pick up. Lake Pahoja Bluegill - Good: Use small jigs tipped with waxworms. Black Crappie - Good: Try small jigs tipped with waxworms. Largemouth Bass - Good: Use rubber worms or other slow-moving jigs. Lost Island Lake Yellow Perch – Fair. Walleye – Fair. Silver Lake (Dickinson) Walleye – Good. Spirit Lake The walleye season is open. A great walleye and yellow perch bite has been seen lately with many yellows over 10 inches being caught. The water temperature is 79 degrees. Bluegill - Good: Schools are starting to move deeper off shore post-spawn. Walleye - Good: A fairly good bite lately can also be seen from shore. Try bottom bouncers or crankbaits to cover more water. Black Bullhead - Fair: Anglers have been successful at the north grade. Yellow Perch - Good: The bite has really picked up; fish are a little deeper than what can be easily fished from shore. Try small humps in the main basin or weed edges.  West Okoboji Lake The walleye season is open. The water temperature is 80 degrees. The panfish bite has been great. Bluegill - Good: Schools are starting to move deeper off shore. Try fishing in about 16 feet of water in the weeds or weed lines. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Find smallmouth bass on rock piles or on the points.. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Find largemouth bass on the weed lines. Yellow Perch - Fair: Schools have started to move deeper off shore. Iowa Great Lake water temperatures have warmed up up substantially and are currently 79 degrees or warmer. This week’s extended forecast calls for temperatures ranging from the upper 70's to upper 80's. For current conditions, call the Spirit Lake District Office at 712-336-1840.   NORTHEAST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Cedar River (above Nashua) Repairs to the Nashua dam continue as water levels and flows drop. Water levels are falling. Clarity is improving. Use caution; underwater hazards may have moved. Go to the USGS Current Conditions website for more information on water levels. Channel Catfish - Good: Use chicken liver and stinkbaits or dead chub fished on the bottom out of current. Walleye - Fair: Use a jig tipped with a bright plastic tail for quick action. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Anglers are finding quite a few small ones. Use a jig tipped with natural colored twister tails and crank or spinnerbaits for bass. Decorah District Streams Wild parsnip is coming on strong. Avoid touching this plant; it causes painful blisters. All trout stream stockings are unannounced due to COVID-19 precautions. Due to marginal water temperatures in July and August on a few streams, stocking catchable size trout is temporarily discontinued. Hatchery grounds are open to the public, but feeders and other conveniences are temporarily closed. Brook Trout - Good: When fishing private property open to angling, leave that property as was or better by picking up trash. Close gates if you opened them; be considerate. Brown Trout - Good: More terrestrials are out. Use beetles or other bright flies fished along grassed edges. Afternoon hatches of caddis and may flies have been slow. Pheasant tailed nymphs and bead headed midges work well. Use hair jigs or spinners for aggressive fish. Rainbow Trout - Excellent:Try a worm or cheese floated through a pool under a bobber. Use an ultra-light pole and reel for fun action. Try small crappie or bluegill jigs. Lake Hendricks Aquatic vegetation is coming on strong. Early morning and evening bite are best. Black Crappie - Slow: Find crappie suspended in deeper water around structure. Use a minnow or small lure drifting over structure. Bluegill - Fair: Try a small piece of worm on a hook under a small bobber. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use topwater lures or weedless hooks fished along the weed edges.Channel Catfish - Good: With warmer water temperatures, try cheese or stinkbaits. Nightcrawlers will work. Lake Meyer Water clarity is excellent. Filamentous algae mats are covering shallow water. Fish early morning and evening when shadows aren't cast on the water. Black Crappie - Slow: Use a small spinnerbait tossed along a steep depth change. Bluegill - Fair: Try a small piece of worm fished under a bobber. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use a jig tipped with a twister tail or worm fished along the shore. Channel Catfish - Fair: Use a nightcrawler fished on the bottom near stumps or other structure. Also try chicken liver or cheese baits. Turkey River (above Clermont) Water levels are falling with improved clarity. Go to the USGS Current Conditions website for more information on water levels. Walleye - Fair: Find walleye in deeper holes around brush piles. Toss a jig tipped with a twister tail near a brush pile.  Upper Iowa River (above Decorah) Water levels are falling with improved clarity. Current remains strong. Water hazards may have moved. Walleye - Fair: Flip a jig with twister tail along a brush pile or rock ledge. White Sucker - Slow: Try a hook tipped with a nightcrawler fished on the bottom. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Toss a small crankbait along a current break or rock ledge. Upper Iowa River (below Decorah) Water levels are falling with improved clarity. Strong current; water hazards and stream conditions change fast. Walleye - Fair: Find walleye along current breaks or around log jams. White Sucker - Slow: Try a hook tipped with a nightcrawler fished on the bottom.  Volga Lake Best bite is early morning or just before dark. Water clarity is 6-8 inches due to an algae bloom. Bluegill - Slow: Use a small hook tipped with waxworm or small piece of nightcrawler fished around brush piles and rocky shores. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Use a jig tipped with a ringworm or twister tail. Channel Catfish - Good: Try a nightcrawler, cheese bait or chicken livers fished on the bottom. Best catfishing lake around. Black Crappie - Slow: Use a minnow under a bobber along a rocky shoreline or around brush piles. Area rivers and streams water levels continue to fall, but flows remain high. Water clarity is much improved. Expect a hot, humid weekend with temperatures in the upper 80's for highs and upper 60's for lows. 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, crappie and channel catfish. Some sorting may be needed on bluegill; crappie and catfish angling is best early morning or late evening. Largemouth Bass - Good: Cast crankbaits, spinnerbaits, topwater and plastics. Black Crappie - Good: Cast and retrieve colored tube jigs. Bluegill - Good: Try a small piece of worm under a bobber with a small split shot sinker and small hook. Channel Catfish - Good: Cast dead cut baits, chicken livers or stinkbait on the bottom of the lake; early morning or later evening bite is best. Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Best success is channel catfish on the Cedar River. Channel Catfish - Fair: Cast dead cut baits, chicken livers or stinkbait on the bottom of the lake; early morning or later evening bite is best. George Wyth Lake Good reports of largemouth bass being caught on George Wyth Lake. Newly placed habitat in and around the floating pier may provide success. Largemouth Bass - Good: Cast crankbaits, spinnerbaits, topwater and plastics. Maquoketa River (above Monticello) Anglers are catching walleye and smallmouth bass on the Maquoketa River. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Cast spinnerbaits or crankbaits. Walleye - Fair: Cast crankbaits or fishing a half of a crawler on a jig and plastic rig. Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock) We received no information about fishing on this waterbody this week. Wapsipinicon River (Tripoli to Troy Mills) We received no information about fishing on this waterbody this week. Interior rivers continue to drop and are providing some catches of smallmouth bass and walleye. Lakes in and around Cedar Falls/Waterloo area are providing some catches of largemouth bass. Trout streams remain in excellent condition, but potential heavy thunderstorms are predicted for this evening. All three trout hatcheries remain closed. Call the Manchester Hatchery at 563-927-3276 for more information.   MISSISSIPPI RIVER FISHING REPORTS Mississippi River Pool 9 River level is 9.5 feet at Lansing with a fall predicted this week. Water temperature is 83 degrees. New Albin Army road is reopened. Hwy 82, Lansing Bridge is closed. Use caution at ramps during low water. Lansing Village Creek is shallow near the creek mouth. Heytman's Landing is accessible with shallow drive boats only. Walleye - Good: Walleyes are biting on crankbaits on wing dams and channel border structure. Northern Pike - Good: Try in areas of colder streams and springs entering the Mississippi River. Yellow Perch - Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished just off the bottom near shorelines with slight current. Black Crappie - Good: Crappies are in about 10 feet of water. Use a minnow under a bobber in areas with less current in backwaters or side channels. Largemouth Bass - Good: Bass will be on pre-spawn bite as temperatures rise. Cast plastics or blade baits in backwater lakes. Smallmouth Bass - Excellent: Try spinnerbaits fished in rock piles at the tip of the islands on main channel borders. Shovelnose sturgeon - Fair: Some shovelnose are being picked up with a crawler fished off the bottom in main channel areas. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Flathead bite has slowed, but some are being caught on shiners or a small bluegill for bait. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Try nightcrawlers or cut bait fished off the bottom in deeper side channel areas. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are spawning. Use light tackle tipped with small piece of worm along the shorelines. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Use a crawler fished on the bottom along current breaks. Mississippi River Pool 10 River level is 618.2 feet at Lynxville and is expected to fall this week. Water temperature is 84 degrees. Sny Magill access is open. Walleye - Good: Walleyes are biting on crankbaits on wing dams and channel border structure. Northern Pike - Excellent: Try in areas of colder streams and springs entering the Mississippi River. Yellow Perch - Excellent: Use a small piece of crawler fished just off the bottom near shorelines with slight current. Black Crappie - Good: Crappies are in 8-10 feet of water. Use a minnow under a bobber in areas near current breaks in backwaters and side channels. Largemouth Bass - Good: Bass will be on pre-spawn bite as temperatures rise. Cast plastics or blade baits in backwater lakes. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Try spinnerbaits fished in rock piles at the tip of the islands on main channel borders. Shovelnose sturgeon - Good: Some shovelnose are being picked up using a crawler fished off the bottom in main channel areas. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Flathead bite has slowed, but some are still being caught on shiners or a small bluegill for bait. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Try nightcrawlers or cut bait fished off the bottom in deeper side channel areas.  Bluegill - Excellent: Bluegills are spawning. Use light tackle tipped with small piece of worm along the shorelines. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Try a crawler fished on the bottom along current breaks. Mississippi River Pool 11 River level is 9.7 feet at Guttenberg and is predicted to fall to 8 feet this week. Water temperature is in the mid 80's. Walleye - Good: Walleyes are biting on crankbaits on wing dams and channel border structure. Northern Pike - Excellent: Try in areas of colder streams and springs entering the Mississippi River. Yellow Perch - Fair: Use a small piece of crawler fished just off the bottom near shorelines with slight current. Black Crappie - Good: Crappies are in about 10 feet of water. Use a minnow under a bobber in areas with less current in backwaters and side channels. Largemouth Bass - Good: Bass will be on pre-spawn bite as temperatures rise. Cast plastics or blade baits in backwater lakes. Smallmouth Bass - Excellent: Try spinnerbaits fished in rock piles at the tip of the islands on main channel borders. Shovelnose sturgeon - Fair: Some shovelnose are being picked up with a crawler fished off the bottom in main channel areas. Flathead Catfish - Fair: Flathead bite has slowed, but some are still being caught on shiners or a small bluegill for bait. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Try nightcrawlers or cut bait fished off the bottom in deeper side channel areas. Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are spawning. Use light tackle tipped with small piece of worm along the shorelines. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Try a crawler fished on the bottom along current breaks. Upper Mississippi River levels are predicted to fall this week. Water clarity is good. Walleye slot length limits now apply on the entire Mississippi River. All walleyes less than 15 inches long and between 20-27 inches long must be released immediately. Only one walleye greater than 27 inches can be kept. Combined walleye/sauger daily harvest limit of 6 and possession of 12.   Mississippi River Pool 12 Water levels are stable, but will start to recede slightly later this week. The water level is near 9.3 feet at the Dubuque Lock and Dam and 11.5 feet at the RR bridge.The water temperature is around 86 degrees. The water clarity is good. Northern Pike - Excellent: Flashy spinners in warm sun filled waters might trigger these predators. Bluegill - Good: Most of the spawning is over, but some bluegills are still being reported in shallow backwater areas. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Lots of anglers are switching to prepared stinkbaits. Some catfish have started to move along the rock lines to prepare for spawning. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on an egg sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Largemouth Bass - Good: Lots of bass are being taken off lily pad areas on spinnerbaits or frog imitation lures. Smallmouth Bass - Good: Some smallies have moved in along the rock piles; use flashy spoons or crankbaits. Mississippi River Pool 13 Water level is 10.4 feet at the Bellevue Lock and Dam and is expected to recede later this week. The water temperature is 86 degrees. The water is clear. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Some cats have moved along rock lines. Anglers are switching to prepared stinkbaits. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on a sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Northern Pike - Excellent: Try flashy spinners fished along old weed edges and rock shorelines. Largemouth Bass - Excellent: Lots of bass are being taken off lily pad areas on spinnerbaits or frog imitation lures. Bluegill - Good: Try fishing around brush piles in larger sloughs with moderate current. Flathead Catfish - Good: Use live fish for bait. Lots of trot lines are being set.  Mississippi River Pool 14 The water level is 9.7 feet at the Fulton Lock and Dam, 12.5 feet at Camanche and 7.2 feet at LeClaire. Water temperature is 87 degrees. Water clarity is fair. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Anglers are switching to prepared stinkbaits. Look for channel cats to move along the rock lines. Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on a worm sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Largemouth Bass - Good: : Lots of bass are being taken off lily pad areas on spinnerbaits or frog imitation lures. Northern Pike - Good: Use flashy spinners along backwater shorelines or in the tailwaters for this aggressive fish. Flathead Catfish - Good: Try large live bait to catch big flathead catfish. Bluegill - Good: Find bluegills near the mouths of large backwater areas, usually around brush piles. Mississippi River Pool 15 Water level is around 10.1 feet at Rock Island and is stable. Expect water levels to recede slightly later in the week. The water temperature is 87 degrees; water clarity is good. Freshwater Drum - Good: Freshwater drum are easy to catch on a worm sinker and worm rig. Fish in moderate current. Channel Catfish - Excellent: Channel cats are readily biting on cut bait and prepared baits. Flathead Catfish - Good: Try live bait around brush piles or in the tailwater area. Smallmouth Bass - Fair: Fish the rocky habitats along the channel edge. Water level is expected to slowly recede later in the week.Water temperature has warmed into the upper 80's throughout the district. If you have any fishing questions, please contact the Bellevue Fisheries Station 563-880-8781.   SOUTHEAST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Big Hollow Lake Hot weather is keeping angler numbers down. Water temperature in the 80's. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Going to go deep; work some of the edges of the brush piles in 5 to 7 feet of water earlier in the morning. Bluegill - Fair: Most bluegills have moved off the beds and are out in 6 to 8 feet of water. Iowa River (Columbus Junction to Mississippi River Finally below bank full level. Forecast to drop only another foot or so over the next week. Lake Belva Deer Water temperature is in the mid to upper 80's. Early morning bite is best; most anglers are gone by 9 am.  Largemouth Bass - Fair: Summer patterns have set up. Try early in the shallows; most of the day they are out in deeper water. Bluegill - Fair: Move out to the deeper water (16 to 18 feet) out around the trees. Black Crappie - Fair: Try slow trolling at the lower end of the lake early in the morning.  Lake Darling The water has tried to clear up; it is now starting to turn green. Water temperature is in the mid to upper 80's. Monday afternoon at 3 pm it hit 94 degrees at the surface.   Largemouth Bass - Slow: The hot weather pushed them out into deeper water. Early morning before it heats up is best. Bluegill - Fair: Start out in the 5 to 7 feet of water over the rock piles; don’t be surprised if you end up in 10 to 12 feet of water. Black Crappie - Slow: Anglers are picking up a few crappies slowly drift trolling in 10 to 12 feet of water; bite will improve as the water clears. Lost Grove Lake Water temperatures are in the mid-80's. Water clarity is still good with a little green color; weed beds are dying back. Largemouth Bass - Fair: Still catching a few bass in shallow early in the morning. The evening bite has slowed since the water hasn't started cooling off by then. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegill have moved to deeper water for the summer to get away from the heat. Start looking in 10 to 15 feet of water in the trees; don’t be surprised if you end up out in 15 to 20 feet of water.   Skunk River (Rose Hill to Coppock) The water level stabilized at just under half bank full. Channel Catfish - Fair: The hot weather has kept a lot of anglers off the river this week. The grass frogs are really starting to come out  with the heavy dew in the mornings; good time to try a few for fish bait. For more information on the above lakes, call the Lake Darling Fisheries Office at 319-694-2430.   Lake Miami Bluegill - Fair: Try small jigs around the fishing jetties. Drift fishing from a boat can also produce some bluegills this time of year. Lake Wapello Largemouth Bass - Fair: Try topwater lures early and late in the day. Target cedar tree piles. Rathbun Reservoir The current lake level is 904.52 msl. Normal operating elevation is 904.0 msl. Lake Rathbun has zebra mussels, so make sure to properly drain, clean, and dry equipment before transporting to another waterbody. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) – Fair: Try vertically jigging around rock piles and submerged points. Red Haw Lake Largemouth Bass - Fair: Try topwater lures early and late in the day. Use spinnerbaits and crankbaits during the hotter parts of the day. Bluegill - Slow: Try drifting in the main part of the lake with nightcrawlers. The district includes Appanoose, Davis, Lucas, Mahaska, Monroe, Wapello, Wayne and Van Buren counties. Contact the Rathbun Fish Hatchery at 641-647-2406 with questions about fishing in south central Iowa.   SOUTHWEST IOWA FISHING REPORTS Big Creek Lake Walleye - Slow: Troll live bait rigs or crankbaits at depths of 15 feet or less in the upper half of the lake. Black Crappie - Fair: Drift or troll jigs with twister or paddle tails down 3 to 6 feet in the upper half of the lake. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) - Fair: Cast or troll shad imitating spoons, crankbaits or plastics. Look for schools of young shad breaking the surface of the water to find feeding wipers. Des Moines River (Saylorville to Red Rock) Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish and flathead catfish are being caught. Try live bait, stinkbait and crawlers. Des Moines River (Stratford to Saylorville Lake) Channel Catfish - Good: Try stinkbaits or cut bait fished in or just upstream of tree falls. Don Williams Lake Black Crappie - Fair: Drift or troll panfish jigs out a little deeper on the edges of the treefalls and over sunken pallets. Most crappies are 8.5 to 10 inches. Bluegill - Good: Catch spawning bluegills shallow fishing small jigs tipped with nightcrawlers under a bobber. For more information on Central Iowa lakes and rivers, call Ben Dodd at 641-891-3795 or Andy Otting at 515-204-5885. Lake Anita Crappies were caught around brush piles and the road beds this week. Bluegills have moved into a summer pattern. Bluegill - Fair: Drift or troll small jigs tipped with berkly or nightcrawlers in 6 to 8 feet of water. Black Crappie - Slow: Find crappie around tree piles and along the two road beds in the lake. Largemouth Bass - Good: Anita has a good bass population. Find fish along vegetation edges and around tree piles.  Lake Manawa Walleyes are being picked up around the dredge cuts and the west shore. Channel catfish are being caught on the west shore. Be aware of signs marking the dredge pipe in the lake. Channel Catfish - Fair: Channel catfish are close to shore. Fish are all sizes in the lake. White Crappie - Fair: A few large white crappies are being caught on the west shore. Walleye - Fair: A few anglers are having good success trolling crankbaits using planner boards. Don't overlook running a crawler through the dredge cuts.  Littlefield Lake Littlefield has a good ring of aquatic vegetation. Bluegill - Fair: Bluegills have moved around the cedar tree piles in the lake. Largemouth Bass - Good: There is a large number of 12 to 14 inch fish in the lake. Channel Catfish - Good: Cast cut or stinkbait along the dam to catch 2-4 pound channel catfish. Prairie Rose Lake Anglers report catching channel catfish around the reefs. Water temperature is 80 degrees. Bluegill - Slow: Bluegills have moved off the spawning beds and can be caught around tree piles or drifting open water areas of the lake. Channel Catfish - Good: Channel catfish are being caught around the jetties and underwater reefs. Fish average 2 to 4 pounds. Largemouth Bass - Good: A large population of 12 to 14 inch bass offer fun catch and release fishing.  Viking Lake Viking Lake is six feet low. Black Crappie - Fair: Black crappies are being caught in brush piles. Cast a minnow under a bobber to catch 9 to 12 inch crappie. Largemouth Bass - Good: Anglers are catching bass in tree piles using plastics. For more information on lakes in the Southwest District call the Cold Springs office at 712-769-2587. Green Valley Lake Largemouth Bass - Slow: Use jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles to catch largemouth bass up to 20 inches. Black Crappie - Slow: Catch crappie up to 9 inches with jigs tipped with live bait fished near cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill - Slow: Catch bluegill up to 7.5 inches with jigs tipped with live bait fished near the fishing jetties or cedar tree brush piles.  Lake Icaria Bluegill - Slow: Catch bluegill of all sizes with nightcrawlers fished under a bobber along the fish mounds. Channel Catfish - Good: Use nightcrawlers fished along rocky shoreline areas to catch channel catfish of all sizes. Little River Watershed Lake Bluegill - Slow: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished near cedar tree brush piles to catch bluegill up to 8.5 inches. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Catch largemouth bass up to 20 inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles or along weed lines.  Three Mile Lake Walleye - Slow: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished along the creek channels to catch walleyes up to 22 inches. Black Crappie - Slow: Catch crappies up to 10 inches with jigs tipped with a minnow fished along the flooded timber. Bluegill - Fair: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished near cedar tree brush piles to catch bluegill of all sizes. Twelve Mile Creek Lake Black Crappie - Slow: Use jigs tipped with live bait fished along cedar tree brush piles or creek channels to catch crappie up to 11 inches. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Catch largemouth bass up to 20 inches with jigs fished near cedar tree brush piles. Bluegill - Slow: Catch bluegill of all sizes with jigs tipped with live bait fished along the weed line or cedar tree brush piles. Water temperature in most Mount Ayr district lakes is in the low to mid-80's. For more information, contact the Mount Ayr Fisheries office at 641-464-3108.
    • that's what I'm thinking and I like the idea!!!
    • So what you guys are saying I shouldn’t worry about it at least for the next several years?
    • It's been a loooooooooong time since I've checked in here. Good to see y'all are still talking mushrooms.   The first photos are almost certainly pholiota of some sort. They'll have gills and a funky smell.  The other "shelf" ones are definitely pheasantbacks, which don't have gills and have an odor that's close to a watermelon rind.      
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