Lake Manawa

General Information

County: Pottawattamie
Location: Southwest edge of Council Bluffs
Acres: 747.00
Maximum Depth: 11.1 ft. (2006 - Data collected as part of the statewide lake mapping program.)
Motoring Restrictions: None

Nearby Parks

Amenities

Amenities at Lake Manawa include:
  • Boat Access
  • Fishing Jetty
  • Accessible Pier
  • Boat Rental
  • Picnic Area
  • Beach
  • Trails
  • Accessible Facilities
  • Playground
  • Restrooms
  • Camping
  • Concessions
  • Good/Excellent Shorefishing
  • Hard Surface Boat Ramp
On warm sunny days anglers are catching crappies in the canals on the north side of the lake. Sorting is necessary for larger fish. A few catfish are being caught on the south side of the lake.
Water clarity is good after last weeks heavy rains. Anglers should concentrate close to rocky shorelines for spawning crappies this week in the southwest district. For more information call the Cold Springs District Office at (712) 769-2587
Channel Catfish - Slow: Anglers are catching catfish with cutbait.
Walleye - Fair: Walleyes can be caught drifting crawlers or slow trolling crankbaits on the south side of the lake.
White Crappie - Fair: Cast jigs or minnows under a bobber on warm sunny days to catch crappies in the canals. Fish will range in size up to 12 inches.
Download Printable Lake Map

You can zoom in on the map for bathymetric information for some lakes

The Fishing Regulations brochure is available for download. The summaries listed below are a partial listing provided for your benefit.

  • Bigmouth Buffalo
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: none
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:
  • Black Bullhead
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: unlimited
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:
  • Black Crappie
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined black and white crappie, 25 fish
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: No daily limit on private waters
  • Bluegill
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: 25 fish
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: No daily limit on private waters
  • Channel Catfish
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined: channel, blue and flathead catfish, 8 fish
    • Possession Limit: combined: channel, blue and flathead catfish, 30 fish
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: Associated chutes and backwaters of border rivers (Missouri, Big Sioux, and Des Moines) where intermittent or constant flow occur have a catfish combined daily bag of 15 fish. Associated chutes and backwaters of the Mississippi River have no daily bag or possession limit.
  • Common Carp
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: none
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: May be taken by hand fishing, by snagging, by spear or by bow and arrow, day or night.
  • Flathead Catfish
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined: channel, blue and flathead catfish, 8 fish
    • Possession Limit: combined: channel, blue and flathead catfish, 30 fish
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: Associated chutes and backwaters of border rivers (Missouri, Big Sioux, and Des Moines) where intermittent or constant flow occur have a catfish combined daily bag of 15 fish. Associated chutes and backwaters of the Mississippi River have no daily bag or possession limit.
  • Largemouth Bass
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined black bass, 3 fish
    • Possession Limit: combined black bass, 6 fish
    • Length Limit: 15-inch minimum
    • Other:
  • Smallmouth Buffalo
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: none
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:
  • Walleye
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined walleye, sauger and saugeye; 5 fish
    • Possession Limit: combined walleye, sauger and saugeye; 10 fish
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: Associated chutes and backwaters of border rivers where intermittent or constant flow occur; relevant local length and bag limits for border rivers apply
  • Yellow Bass
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: none
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: Associated chutes and backwaters of the Mississippi River are included where intermittent or constant flow occur. In these areas, the daily bag and possession limit for the Mississippi River apply.
  • Yellow Bullhead
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: unlimited
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:
Lake Manawa is a shallow 772 acre oxbow lake of the Missouri River. Water from Mosquito Creek is fed into the Manawa to suppliment water levels during the year. Sixteen different fish species have been documented in the lake. The fishing centers around black and white crappie, largemouth bass, walleye, wipers, channel catfish, and flathead catfish). The walleye, wipers, and channel catfish are stocked by the DNR to maintain numbers. Walleye and wipers provide an additional preditor in the lake as well as some exciting fishing. Crappies in the lake are cyclical and their populations vary from year to year depending on the size and number of the dominate year class. Last falls fishery survey showed good numbers of small 6 inch crappies and very few 9-inch plus fish remaining in the population. Crappie anglers will do a lot of sorting in 2015. The largemouth bass population is low in numbers but contains some quality sized fish. Fair numbers of walleyes above 17-inches are present with fish up to 26-inches. Annual wiper stockings have produced multiple year classes in Manawa. Good numbers of 18 inch wipers in the population provide some exciting fishing. The channel catfish population is abundant and fish range from 15 to 28-inches.(2015)

Contacts

Fish Surveys

Lake Fish Survey Data Data from the most recent fisheries survey of this lake is provided on this external web site. This data may include information from various netting surveys and/or electroshocking surveys. Data includes numbers of fish sampled, and fish size ranges. Not all lakes are sampled every year.

Lake Mini-report

Lake Reports Summary report information about selected (~130) lakes regarding water quality, upstream land use, usage, economic value and more. Reports are customizable by the user to include only that information which the user desires to include.

Water Quality

Iowa-Caught Fish Are Safe to Eat, In Almost All Cases

The vast majority of Iowa’s streams, rivers and lakes offer safe and high-quality fish that pose little or no threat to human health if consumed. Some limitations may apply for young children and pregnant women. Here’s a Fish Consumption Fact Sheet from the Iowa DNR and the Iowa Dept. of Public Health for more information. Here is a list of current fish consumption advisories for Iowa lakes and rivers.