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Iowa's Fishing Report

Sign up today for free weekly fishing information from Iowa’s fisheries experts. Learn the best hot spots and latest news about Iowa’s fishing opportunities from region to region. This weekly fishing forecast will be emailed directly to your inbox every Thursday!

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How to Read Our Weekly Iowa Fishing Report

DNR’s weekly fishing report is broken down by counties or regions – northwest, northeast, Mississippi river, southeast and southwest.

You can check the activity of your favorite lake or stretch of river within each region, 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.

Fishing reports may include information on stream or river flows (and if it is rising or dropping), ice conditions, depths that fish are biting (watch for trends if this changes), or safety issues like if the water suddenly becomes shallow in spots.

Fishing Podcasts

Each month, Jeff Kopaska of the Iowa DNR and Ross Peterson from KXnO Sports Fanatics get together to talk about fishing opportunities, seasons and events in Iowa and around the Midwest. They are often joined by other DNR staff and guest speakers.

The links below are the podcast recordings of their conversations, and can also be found on the iHeartRadio app.

2023 Podcast Links

January 2023 Fishing Report - ice fishing tips and safety, winter community trout stockings and fish stocking requests and data

February 2023 Fishing Report - tips for getting your gear ready for spring fishing, Mid Iowa Bassmasters Fishermen's Swap Meet, Iowa Walleye Challenge and new state record orangespotted sunfish

March 2023 Fishing Report -  spring community trout stockings, Iowa Walleye Challenge, Hook n" Paddle Passport, early season river fishing for walleyes and lake fishing for ice-out catfish

April 2023 Fishing Report - AJ Winter, Iowa DNR Outdoor Skills Specialist joins us to preview spring outdoor activities, plus trout stocking and walleye gillnetting

May 2023 Fishing Report - Clear Lake fishing, shovelnose sturgeon sampling, Iowa Wallaye Challenge local prizes and Hook n' Paddle Passport launch

June 2023 Fishing Report - Free Fishing Weekend, fishing community ponds, tips for kayak fishing

July 2023 Fishing Report - local angler, Richared Grimes joins us to talk about the Iowa Walleye Challenge, plus Des Moines area community fishing spots and the Hook n' Paddle Passport 

August 2023 Fishing Report - we answer questions posed by some central Iowa listeners, plus trout fishing and the Iowa State Fair

September 2023 Fishing Report - Chad Dolan, Iowa DNR fisheries biologist joins us with an update on the Lake Geode restoration project, plus fall fish stockings

December 2023 Fishing Report - 2024 Midwest Walleye Challenge preview, plus fishing Christmas gift ideas

February 2022 Fishing Report - Zak Slagle from the Ohio DNR joins us to talk about walleye populations, fishing and surveys at Lake Erie; plus plans for the Midwest Fish & Wildlife Conference hosted by Iowa DNR is Des Moines mid-February

March 2022 Fishing Report - Ben Neely, Kansas fishery biologist joins us to talk about a recent research project to determine if live scope sonar technology leads to anglers catching more/bigger fish; plus spring community trout stockings

April 2022 Fishing Report - new state record smallmouth buffalo, plus tips for catching trout in community fishing ponds and annual walleye gillnetting efforts

June 2022 Fishing Report - fishing tips and hotspots, plus sturgeon sampling on the Cedar River, Free Fishing Weekend and Iowa Walleye Challenge

August 2022 Fishing Report - live from the Iowa State Fair; stop by the aquarim in the DNR building to see fish from across Iowa; plus local fishing information 

September 2022 Fishing Report - new community fishing ponds, fishing sampling and fishing tournaments 

October 2022 Fishing Report - fish diet research, fishing tournaments and the big walleye controversy on Lake Erie; plus fall fishing tips

November 2022 Fishing Report - Mike Siepker joins us to talk trout - stockings, spawning, management and more

December 2022 Fishing Report - Hank Kholer joins us to talk about his One4Water trip and new book; plus ice fishing season preview

January 2021 Fishing Report - Kevan Paul joins us to talk about ice fishing on Clear Lake

February 2021 Fishing Report - fishing in community ponds, plus hybrid striped bass in Big Creek, and the hot yellow perch bite at Clear Lake

March 2021 Fishing Report - Corey Goldsworthy from the Minnesota DNR joins us to talk about the fishing options at Lake Superior, plus ice-out catfishing

April 2021 Fishing Report - Jay Rudacille, Iowa DNR Warm and Coolwater Fish Culture Supervisor, joins us to talk about the annual spring walleye collection, production and stocking, plus spring community trout stockings and fun fishing stories

May 2021 Fishing Report - Hank Kohler joins us to talk about his upcoming paddling trip from central Minnesota down the Mississippi River to the Gulf of Mexico to make people aware of and seek donations for clean water projects

July 2021 Fishing Report - Fish Local Community Fishing Program and river catfishing tips, plus trout stream sampling

September 2021 Fishing Report - freshwater drum fishing on the Mississippi River, plus drift fishing for crappie and recap of Iowa State Fair aquarium and courtyard presentations

October 2021 Fishing Report - fall fishing tips, plus fall community trout stockings annouced again this year and upcoming trout angler survey

December 2021 Fishing Report - Eric Brinkman, asssistant chief of aquatic conservation in Arkansas, joins us to talk about managing alligator gar in the Red River; plus the Iowa Urban Trout Challenge on urban/community trout locations through December 31, 2021.

Iowa Fishing Report

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Waterbody District Comments Date
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Anglers have been doing well on the interior rivers fishing from boats although navigation has been difficult with low water conditions. Trout streams remain in excellent condition. For further information contact your local bait shops for the most recent information. 02/29 08:43
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Anglers are catching walleye, smallmouth bass, northern pike and crappie on the Cedar River. 02/29 08:43
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Walleye - Fair: Anglers have been doing best casting and retrieving lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 02/29 08:43
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Black Crappie - Good: Try jigging colored tube jigs along rock shorelines, mid to late afternoon has been the most successful. 02/29 08:48
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Smallmouth Bass - Excellent: Anglers have been doing best casting and retrieving lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 02/29 08:49
Cedar River (Nashua to La Porte City) Northeast Northern Pike - Good: Anglers have been doing best casting and retrieving lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 02/29 08:54
Maquoketa River (above Monticello) Northeast Anglers have been doing well on the interior rivers fishing from boats although navigation has been difficult with low water conditions. Trout streams remain in excellent condition. For further information contact your local bait shops for the most recent information. 02/29 08:43
Maquoketa River (above Monticello) Northeast There have been no reports on the Maquoketa River but walleyes should be on the bite before the spring spawn. 02/29 08:43
Maquoketa River (above Monticello) Northeast Walleye - No Report: Anglers do best when casting and retrieving lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 02/29 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Upper Mississippi River levels are predicted to gradually fall. The main channel has opened up and many anglers are taking advantage of the early open-water fishing. Live bait and a slow presentation have been key to enticing the early bite. Expect the bite to pick up as water temperatures rise. Main channel temps are climbing to near 40 degrees. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Sauger - Fair: Some nice sized sauger on jig and minnow being caught but bite can be slow at times. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Walleye - Fair: Slow bite at times but some nice fish being found on live bait. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Water level at Lynxville is currently near 613.2 feet and is expected to gradually fall over the next week. Water temp at the Lock & Dam is 40 degrees at Lynxville. The boat ramp is open there. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Yellow Perch - Slow: Perch are near spawn and the bite is picking up. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish anglers have been catching a few channel cats this week on crawlers. 02/29 11:45
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Upper Mississippi River levels are predicted to gradually fall. The main channel has opened up and many anglers are taking advantage of the early open-water fishing. Live bait and a slow presentation have been key to enticing the early bite. Expect the bite to pick up as water temperatures rise. Main channel temps are climbing to near 40 degrees. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Sauger - Fair: Some nice sized sauger on jig and minnow being caught but bite can be slow at times. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Walleye - Fair: Slow bite at times but some nice fish being found on live bait. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Water level at Guttenberg is currently near 5.1 feet and is expected to gradually fall over the next week. Water temperature is near 40. The boat ramps in Guttenberg are open. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Yellow Perch - Slow: Perch are near the spawn. Expect the bite to pick up as the water temperature reaches into 40's 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish anglers have been catching a few channel cats this week on crawlers. 02/29 11:45
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Angling has been concentrating in the tailwaters for walleyes and sauger. Paddlefish season will start on March 1st. Rules can be a bit confusing for paddlefish snagging so please review them if you are unsure. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast The river is steady at Dubuque with the level at Lock and Dam 11 near 5.3 feet and 7.9 feet at the RR bridge. Water temperature is around 40 degrees, and the water clarity is good. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Sauger - Fair: Most anglers are using a jig and minnow or one eye rig. Fishing has been good at times this spring for many anglers with many small fish and an occasional keeper being caught. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Northern Pike - No Report: No report on Northern Pike yet but spawning may be occurring shortly even though it is weeks before the normal spawning season. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Angling has been concentrating in the tailwaters for walleyes and sauger. Paddlefish season will start on March 1st. Rules can be a bit confusing for paddlefish snagging so please review them if you are unsure. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Rainbow Trout - Excellent: The kids trout pond north of the DNR fisheries station is now stocked with trout and can provide fun action for your kids throughout the winter. If you plan to keep trout please limit yourself to 2 trout per child so we can keep good fishing in the pond throughout the winter. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast The water level in Pool 13 is steady near 5.1 feet at Bellevue. Water clarity is good, and the water temperature is around 40 degrees. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Walleye - Fair: Most anglers are catching small saugers with an occasional keeper mixed in. Anglers are largely using a jig and minnow rig. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Channel Catfish - Good: Some catfish are being caught. Seems early but anglers who are targeting them can have good catches. 02/24 08:48
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Angling has been concentrating in the tailwaters for walleyes and sauger. Paddlefish season will start on March 1st. Rules can be a bit confusing for paddlefish snagging so please review them if you are unsure. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast The water level is steady at Fulton, and it is near 4.9 feet, 9.4 feet at Camanche and 4.4 feet at LeClair. Temperature is around 41 degrees. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Walleye - Fair: Most anglers are catching small saugers with an occasional keeper mixed in. Anglers are largely using a jig and minnow rig. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Channel Catfish - Good: Some catfish are being caught. Seems early but anglers who are targeting them can have good catches. 02/24 08:50
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast Angling has been concentrating in the tailwaters for walleyes and sauger. Paddlefish season will start on March 1st. Rules can be a bit confusing for paddlefish snagging so please review them if you are unsure. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast Sauger - No Report: 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast The water level at Rock Island is steady and near 5.2 feet. Water clarity is good and water temperature is 41 degrees. 02/24 08:43
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Upper Mississippi River levels are predicted to gradually fall. The main channel has opened up and many anglers are taking advantage of the early open-water fishing. Live bait and a slow presentation have been key to enticing the early bite. Expect the bite to pick up as water temperatures rise. Main channel temps are climbing to near 40 degrees. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Sauger - Fair: Fish the tailwaters or off tips of deeper wing-dams with hair jigs tipped with a minnow. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Water level at Lansing is 7.9 feet and is expected to stabilize over the next week. Early ice out has given anglers a jump on spring fishing. Water temperature is climbing to near 40 degrees. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Yellow Perch - Fair: Perch are near spawn and the bite is picking up. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Walleye - Fair: Fish the tailwaters or off tips of deeper wing-dams with hair jigs tipped with a minnow. 02/29 11:21
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Channel Catfish - Fair: Catfish anglers have been catching a few channel cats this week on crawlers. 02/29 11:44
Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock) Northeast Anglers have been doing well on the interior rivers fishing from boats although navigation has been difficult with low water conditions. Trout streams remain in excellent condition. For further information contact your local bait shops for the most recent information. 02/29 08:43
Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock) Northeast There have been no reports on the Shell Rock River but walleyes should be on the bite before the spring spawn. 02/29 08:43
Shell Rock River (Greene to Shell Rock) Northeast Walleye - No Report: Anglers do best when casting and retrieving lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 02/29 08:43
Wapsi River (Tripoli to Troy Mills) Northeast Anglers have been doing well on the interior rivers fishing from boats although navigation has been difficult with low water conditions. Trout streams remain in excellent condition. For further information contact your local bait shops for the most recent information. 02/29 08:43
Wapsi River (Tripoli to Troy Mills) Northeast There have been no reports on the Wapsipinicon River but walleyes should be on the bite before the spring spawn. 02/29 08:43
Wapsi River (Tripoli to Troy Mills) Northeast Walleye - No Report: Anglers do best when casting and retrieving lead head jigs tipped with plastics and a minnow. 02/29 08:43
Arrowhead Lake Northwest Area lakes are almost completely ice free. A few have some new skim ice that formed in the bays that will likely be gone by the weekend. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638. 02/29 09:35
Arrowhead Lake Northwest The lake is now completely open. 02/29 09:35
Black Hawk Lake Northwest Area lakes are almost completely ice free. A few have some new skim ice that formed in the bays that will likely be gone by the weekend. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638. 02/29 09:35
Black Hawk Lake Northwest The lake is completely open. Courtesy docks are in at Ice House Point boat ramp and the state campground boat ramp. 02/29 09:35
Black Hawk Lake Northwest Black Crappie - Fair: Catch crappie from the fish house in Town Bay and in the Marina. 02/29 09:35
Black Hawk Lake Northwest Bluegill - Fair: Find bluegill in the Marina and near the inlet bridge. 02/29 09:35
Black Hawk Lake Northwest Yellow Perch - Fair: Fish are being picked up along shore with a small jig under a bobber. Try along Ice Hoise Point, the marina, and near the inlet bridge. Sorting is needed. 02/29 09:35
Black Hawk Pits Northwest Area lakes are almost completely ice free. A few have some new skim ice that formed in the bays that will likely be gone by the weekend. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638. 02/29 09:35
Black Hawk Pits Northwest The lake is ice-free. 02/29 09:35
Brushy Creek Lake Northwest Area lakes are almost completely ice free. A few have some new skim ice that formed in the bays that will likely be gone by the weekend. For more information, contact the Black Hawk District office at 712-657-2638. 02/29 09:35
Brushy Creek Lake Northwest The lake is now open. 02/29 09:35
Clear Lake Northwest For information on the lakes and rivers in north central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517. 02/29 08:28
Clear Lake Northwest The lake is almost ice free. Water level is 13.44 inches below crest. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be immediately released unharmed. No more than one walleye longer than 22-inches may be taken per day. 02/29 08:28
Clear Lake Northwest Black Crappie - Slow: 02/29 08:28
Clear Lake Northwest Walleye - Slow: 02/29 08:28
Clear Lake Northwest Channel Catfish - Slow: Now is a good time to target catfish. Fish a dead chub or cut bait from the wind-swept shore. 02/29 08:28
Clear Lake Northwest Yellow Perch - Fair: Fish a small jig in the rushes. 02/29 09:07
Crystal Lake Northwest For information on the lakes and rivers in north central Iowa, contact the Clear Lake Fish and Wildlife office at 641-357-3517. 02/29 08:28
Crystal Lake Northwest 02/29 08:28
Crystal Lake Northwest Black Crappie - Slow: 02/29 08:28
East Okoboji Lake Northwest Many smaller and shallower lakes are now open. The conditions on the lakes that still have ice do not allow for safe fishing. Continued warm weather should open up most covered lakes in the coming week. The walleye season is now close on the IGL's until May 4th. 02/29 10:08
East Okoboji Lake Northwest The lake is essentially ice free. The walleye season is closed until May 4th. 02/29 10:08
East Okoboji Lake Northwest Black Crappie - Fair: Using minnows and plastics has been working well for many anglers. 02/29 10:08
East Okoboji Lake Northwest Bluegill - Fair: 02/29 10:08
East Okoboji Lake Northwest Yellow Perch - Fair: Sorting will most likely be needed. 02/29 10:08
East Okoboji Lake Northwest Many smaller and shallower lakes are now open. The conditions on the lakes that still have ice do not allow for safe fishing. Continued warm weather should open up most covered lakes in the coming week. The walleye season is now close on the IGL's until May 4th. 02/29 03:31
East Okoboji Lake Northwest Black Crappie - Fair: Using minnows and plastics has been working well for many anglers. 02/29 03:31
East Okoboji Lake Northwest Bluegill - Fair: 02/29 03:31
East Okoboji Lake Northwest The lake is essentially ice free. The walleye season is closed until May 4th. 02/29 03:31
East Okoboji Lake Northwest Yellow Perch - Fair: Sorting will most likely be needed. 02/29 03:31
Ingham Lake Northwest Many smaller and shallower lakes are now open. The conditions on the lakes that still have ice do not allow for safe fishing. Continued warm weather should open up most covered lakes in the coming week. The walleye season is now close on the IGL's until May 4th. 02/29 10:08
Ingham Lake Northwest The lake open in many areas. 02/29 10:08
Ingham Lake Northwest Walleye - Fair: Anglers have been successful morning and evening. 02/29 10:08
Ingham Lake Northwest Many smaller and shallower lakes are now open. The conditions on the lakes that still have ice do not allow for safe fishing. Continued warm weather should open up most covered lakes in the coming week. The walleye season is now close on the IGL's until May 4th. 02/29 03:31
Ingham Lake Northwest The lake open in many areas. 02/29 03:31
Ingham Lake Northwest Walleye - Fair: Anglers have been successful morning and evening. 02/29 03:31
Lost Island Lake Northwest Many smaller and shallower lakes are now open. The conditions on the lakes that still have ice do not allow for safe fishing. Continued warm weather should open up most covered lakes in the coming week. The walleye season is now close on the IGL's until May 4th. 02/29 10:08
Lost Island Lake Northwest Black Crappie - Fair: 02/29 10:08
Lost Island Lake Northwest The lake is ice free. 02/29 10:08
Lost Island Lake Northwest Walleye - Fair: 02/29 10:08
Lost Island Lake Northwest Many smaller and shallower lakes are now open. The conditions on the lakes that still have ice do not allow for safe fishing. Continued warm weather should open up most covered lakes in the coming week. The walleye season is now close on the IGL's until May 4th. 02/29 03:31
Lost Island Lake Northwest Black Crappie - Fair: 02/29 03:31
Lost Island Lake Northwest The lake is ice free. 02/29 03:31
Lost Island Lake Northwest Walleye - Fair: 02/29 03:31
Minnewashta Lake Northwest Many smaller and shallower lakes are now open. The conditions on the lakes that still have ice do not allow for safe fishing. Continued warm weather should open up most covered lakes in the coming week. The walleye season is now close on the IGL's until May 4th. 02/29 10:08
Minnewashta Lake Northwest The Walleye season is currently closed. 02/29 10:08
Minnewashta Lake Northwest Black Crappie - Fair: 02/29 10:08
Minnewashta Lake Northwest Bluegill - Fair: 02/29 10:08
Minnewashta Lake Northwest Pumpkinseed - Good: 02/29 10:08
Minnewashta Lake Northwest Many smaller and shallower lakes are now open. The conditions on the lakes that still have ice do not allow for safe fishing. Continued warm weather should open up most covered lakes in the coming week. The walleye season is now close on the IGL's until May 4th. 02/29 03:31
Minnewashta Lake Northwest Black Crappie - Fair: 02/29 03:31
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Iowa Fishing Report

Fishing Report System
This system allows you to view the current full fishing report, updated in real time! Search the report by location, specific fish, conditions or by water body.

January 2024 Fishing Report - 2024 fishing season preview and ice fishing safety

February 2024 Fishing Report - Gary Siegworth joins us to share highlights of his fisheries career with Iowa DNR, plus trout stockings and local events