BASS AND CATFISHING ON LAKE SPRINGFIELD   Leave a comment

Blue Catfish 6-inch

For an urban lake, Lake Springfield is large, well-developed and well stocked.

This capitol city lake is a 3,866-acre lake with 57 miles of shoreline. There are few lakes in the state of such size that boast such a high population of largemouth bass.  The density as well as body condition of the fish is good creating an excellent fishery.  The bass are typically more heavily bodied per length than is found in other bass populations statewide.  Bass in this fishery average 16-inches in length while statewide the average is more like 14 to 15-inches.

The City of Springfield and the IDNR work together in managing the fishery. The lake is located on the south side of Springfield.  Shore fishing is available in public fishing areas, rip rap areas and there are a number of boat ramps.  There is a 25-hp motor restriction.

Large populations of gizzard and threadfin shad provide the bass with an excellent supply of forage. In the colder weather the warm water areas of the lake provide excellent fishing.  Spring is a good time to fish the lake as the summer season means heavy recreational boating, skiing and wave runner use.  The warming water of this power plant lake provides action earlier in the season than other Illinois lakes as well as an almost continuous feeding season.

In addition to the large amount of riprap there is a considerable amount of underwater structure and vegetation. In addition the water quality in the lake is better today than in the past 25 to 30 years.

The bass most often will take plastics or jerk baits.

The lake’s channel catfish and flathead catfish fishery is near the top in ranking statewide. Anglers report catches of channel catfish of 1 to 10-pounds.  Angler reports fish weighing up to 50-pounds are common.  Blue catfish supplied by a local catfish organization are doing well in the lake with fish of 3 to 57-pounds caught.

Additional fishing for such species as white bass, bluegill, sauger, walleye and crappies is available.

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