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DNR releases fishing report for southeast Iowa

Aug 15, 2013

Coralville Reservoir

The lake is at normal summer pool level.Channel catfish — fair: drifting and trolling cut bait has been producing fish. Crappie — fair: try casting jigs to steeper banks or deeper brush.


Diamond Lake

The lake is still murky. No minnows are allowed here. Channel catfish — good: stinkbait and chicken livers have been working well, especially early and late in the day. Bluegill — fair: most fish are being caught around deeper brush. Crappie — fair: fish are being caught around deeper brush or suspended in open water by drift fishing jigs.


Iowa Lake

The invasive species brittle naiad is present, so check boats, trailers and equipment before leaving the lake. Bluegill — good: some fish are around the weed edges and some are in deeper water. Channel catfish — good: chicken livers and stinkbait are working well. Crappie — good: most fish are suspended in open water.


Otter Creek Lake

The lake water is fairly green from an algae bloom. Bluegill — good: try around deeper brush. Channel catfish — good: evenings have been best. Yellow bass — good: mornings have been best on small spinners.


Pleasant Creek Lake

Water clarity is excellent and water temperature is around 80 degrees. Remember, largemouth bass must be 18 inches to keep and musky must be 40 inches. The invasive species brittle naiad is present, so check boats, trailers and equipment before leaving the lake. Channel catfish — fair: livers, crawlers and stink bait have been working best. White bass — good: fish shallow, wind-blown shorelines with small crankbaits or jigs, or chase schools of fish in open water with topwater baits, crankbaits, or other small, flashy baits. Wiper (hybrid striped bass) — fair: these fish are only two years old but some are approaching 18 inches. Look for them mixed in with the white bass.Walleye — fair: some better fish are being caught by jigging leeches on humps and roadbeds.


Union Grove Lake

Bluegill — good: wax worms are working best, but crawlers are producing as well. Crappie — slow. Channel catfish — good: chicken livers and stinkbait are working best. Largemouth bass — fair: fish along rock banks and the dam face for best results.


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


Iowa River (Columbus Junction to Mississippi River)

Channel catfish — good: the go-to baits continue to be frogs, chubs and crawdads. Work the brush piles and the edges of the sandbars. Water levels are dropping slowly some of the bigger sand bars are really sticking out now.


Lake Belva Deer

Bluegill — fair: work off the edges of the underwater mounds in the lake. The fish are down about 10 feet.


Lake Macbride

Water temperatures are about 80 degrees and the water has quite a bit of color to it. The 10 h.p. motor restriction and five m.p.h. speed limit are in effect. The invasive species brittle naiad is present. Check boats, trailers and equipment before leaving the lake. Channel catfish — slow: some are being caught around shallow rock while others have pulled out to deeper water. Crawlers and stinkbait are working best. Crappie — fair: look for main lake laydowns to hold crappies. Largemouth bass — fair: fish around shallow rock and wood. Walleye — slow: fish are being caught by trolling flats or rock reefs.


Lake Odessa

All the ramps as well as the Toolesboro road are open. There is alot of water moving through Odessa right now, both from the inlet and outlet. Wildlife has the water level dropping fairly fast yet trying to dry out some of the areas that were flooded for most of the spring and summer. Burris ditch is very shallow. Channel catfish — good: look to the button bush thickets to find the catfish. Anglers have been catching them on chicken liver and cut bait. Crappie — good: good numbers of crappies can be found around the tree falls and the beaver lodges.


Lake of the Hills

Lake of the Hills is the only lake in West Lake Park where the use of live minnows is allowed. Channel catfish — excellent: catfishing remains hot. The popular baits remain chicken liver and stinkbait. Bluegill — good: they’re down about three to four feet. Move around to find them; try drift trolling. Crappie — fair: work the brush piles along the dam using minnows. The depth of the fish varies from day to day. Largemouth bass — good: bass are now hitting on plastic worms. White spinner baits continue to work very well.


Railroad Lake

Channel catfish — good: the catfish have been biting on stink bait and chicken liver along the old creek channel on the south side of the lake.The use of live minnows is not permitted on Railroad Lake. Bluegill — good: bluegills are biting along 110th and along the north shore in the stump field. Crappie — fair: anglers working the flooded timber and old creek channel on the south side have been catching some crappies.Largemouth bass — good: use white spinner baits to locate the bass along the rocks and the submerged wood.


Skunk River (Coppock to Mississippi River)

Channel catfish — good: catfish continue to bite. Work the brushpiles and below the rock riffles. The river level has been dropping slowly, some of the riffles are to shallow to boat through now even with the smaller jon boats. Water temperature remains in the low 70s.


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


Lake Sugema

Bluegill — fair: use small jigs and a slip-bobber tipped with a chunk of nightcrawler. Add a split shot about 12 inches above the hook. Look for open areas among the aquatic vegetation and drop the nightcrawler in those areas. Largemouth bass — fair: try top water baits in the morning and evening. Use plastic worms and spinnerbaits along the edges of the aquatic vegetation.


Lake Wapello

Anglers should try rubber worms or top water lures fished among the lily pads. Largemouth bass have also been hitting on crankbaits and spinnerbaits. Target areas with rip-rapped shorelines and aquatic vegetation such as lily pads. Use chicken liver for channel catfish and try area around the rock jetties.


Red Haw Lake

Bluegill — good: use a chunk of nightcrawler on a bare hook and put a bobber about eight to 12 inches above the bait. Try areas near the shoreline. Also try around the fishing jetties or along the dam. Largemouth bass — good: use rubber worms around the stake beds. Try spinnerbaits in areas around the rock jetties and along the face of the dam. Try topwaters in the early mornings in the same areas.


Rathbun Reservoir

The current lake level is 908.35 with normal pool being 904. The water temperature is 77 degrees. Lake Rathbun contains zebra mussels so make sure to clean, drain and dry boats before transporting to another water body. Spray boats and trailers with high pressure hot water (above 104 degrees) or let them dry for at least 10 days (five days in the sun).Channel catfish — fair: try chicken liver and prepared stink bait around areas with rocky shorelines. Also try coves and bays that have some water running into them. Walleye — slow: walleye fishing remains slow but it has improved as the lake gets closer to normal pool. The best baits to use have been crankbaits that mimic gizzard shad around the submerged points and rock reefs. Look for areas where there is a change in depth from deeper to shallower water.


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

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