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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 (above Nashua) Northeast Area rivers and streams are high and muddy due to recent rainfall events. Chance of storms through weekend could cause conditions to worsen. Temperatures low 70's to low 50's. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 05/22 10:47
Cedar River (above Nashua) Northeast Water levels up about 3ft and stabilizing. Clarity is poor. Boating activities not recommended at this time. Snags and debris moving at this time. Please visit, https://water.noaa.gov/ for more information. 05/22 11:00
Cedar River (above Nashua) Northeast Smallmouth Bass - No Report: 05/22 11:18
Decorah District Streams Northeast Area rivers and streams are high and muddy due to recent rainfall events. Chance of storms through weekend could cause conditions to worsen. Temperatures low 70's to low 50's. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 05/22 10:47
Decorah District Streams Northeast Water levels currently elevated at most locations and muddy. Streams with better water quality should clear by the weekend. Use care when wading streams with elevated flows. 05/22 11:05
Decorah District Streams Northeast Brook Trout - Slow: Wait for water to clear for better chance at catching one of these beauties. Good hatches of gnats, mayflies, caddis flies, and midges. 05/22 11:47
Decorah District Streams Northeast Brown Trout - Fair: Fish near or around logs or undercut banks. Spinner baits work well. Also try using streamers on larger waterbodies for some exciting action. Brown trout like cloudy water. 05/22 11:47
Decorah District Streams Northeast Rainbow Trout - Fair: Use spinner baits, hair jigs, or hooks tipped with a small piece of worm, bread, or cheese floated through deeper holes. 05/22 11:47
George Wyth Lake Northeast Interior rivers are near or at flood stage, there are no reports for these this week. Panfish continue to be the target of anglers this past and coming week with catches of both crappie and bluegill in and around the Cedar Falls and Waterloo area. Contact your local bait shops for additional information. 05/23 08:34
George Wyth Lake Northeast Anglers have been catching crappie and bluegill on George Wyth Lake. 05/23 08:38
George Wyth Lake Northeast Black Crappie - Good: Fish a live minnow under a slip bobber near structure of lily pads on the west end of the lake. 05/23 08:40
George Wyth Lake Northeast Bluegill - Good: Fish a piece of worm or crawler under a slip bobber near structure or near shoreline as gills should be on spawning beds. 05/23 08:43
Lake Hendricks Northeast Area rivers and streams are high and muddy due to recent rainfall events. Chance of storms through weekend could cause conditions to worsen. Temperatures low 70's to low 50's. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 05/22 10:47
Lake Hendricks Northeast Water off color and lake levels elevated due to rain. Conditions should improve by the weekend. Water temperatures low 70's. 05/22 10:54
Lake Hendricks Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Try using small jigs under a bobber out from shore near woody debris. 05/22 12:01
Lake Hendricks Northeast Bluegill - Fair: 05/22 12:01
Lake Hendricks Northeast Channel Catfish - Good: 05/22 12:01
Lake Hendricks Northeast Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use spinner baits or crankbaits along edge of vegetation. 05/22 12:01
Lake Meyer Northeast Area rivers and streams are high and muddy due to recent rainfall events. Chance of storms through weekend could cause conditions to worsen. Temperatures low 70's to low 50's. For more information, please contact the Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery at 563-382-8324. 05/22 10:47
Lake Meyer Northeast Elevated lake levels and muddy water due to recent rain. Conditions should improve by the weekend. Water temperatures low 70's. 05/22 10:52
Lake Meyer Northeast Bluegill - Fair: Use small hooks tipped with a waxworm or small piece of worm under a bobber. 05/22 11:59
Lake Meyer Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: 05/22 11:59
Lake Meyer Northeast Largemouth Bass - Fair: Use a spinner bait fished along edge of vegetation for best luck. 05/22 11:59
Lake Meyer Northeast Channel Catfish - Good: 05/22 12:00
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Upper Mississippi River levels remain high and will rise another foot through next week. Water temperature is in upper 60's to 70. Water is stained. A variety of species are biting, however fish are scattered with high water. Search for areas with moderate to no current. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Channel Catfish - Good: Catfish anglers have been catching a few channel cats this week on crawlers. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Sauger - No Report: 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Walleye - Slow: Tailwater fishing has tapered off. Fish jigs tipped with a minnow or crawlers on three-way rigs along side channel or closing dams. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Water level in the tailwater at Lynxville is 619.6 feet and is predicted to rise to 620.4 feet. Water temp at Lock & Dam 9 in Lynxville is 70 degrees. The boat ramp at Sny Magill is closed due to high water. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Yellow Perch - Fair: Perch are biting on live minnows and crawlers along weed-lines in about 6 feet of water. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Fish the flooded timber as the river rises using light tackle and small plastic baits for spring crappie. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Bluegill - Fair: Bluegill have moved into the shallows to spawn. Use light tackle fished close to shore in cover. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Flathead Catfish - Good: Look for the flathead to start feeding as they gear up for the summer spawn. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Freshwater Drum - Good: Fish a piece of crawler off the bottom along main channel and side channel current. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Largemouth Bass - Good: Cast frog baits along weed edges in upper portions of backwaters 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Northern Pike - Fair: Fish the shallows along weed beds in backwater lakes. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast Smallmouth Bass - Excellent: Smallmouth are biting in areas with moderate current. Cast spinners and crankbaits along main channel rock shorelines or at the spillway. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 10 Northeast White Bass - Good: Throw inline spinners along current breaks for white bass action. Watch for schools of minnows jumping as white bass are feeding. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Upper Mississippi River levels remain high and will rise another foot through next week. Water temperature is in upper 60's to 70. Water is stained. A variety of species are biting, however fish are scattered with high water. Search for areas with moderate to no current. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Water level at Guttenberg has risen near 11.3 feet in the tailwaters and is expected to rise to 12.7 feet this week. Water clarity is diminished and temperature is near 70 degrees. Tailwater fishing at the Lock & Dam has been a challenge with increased turbulence due to the lock gates being up. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Fish the flooded timber as the river rises using light tackle and small plastic baits for spring crappie. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Bluegill - Fair: Bluegill have moved into the shallows to spawn. Use light tackle fished close to shore in cover. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Channel Catfish - Good: Catfish anglers have been catching a few channel cats this week on crawlers or cut-bait 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Flathead Catfish - Good: Look for the flathead to start feeding as they gear up for the summer spawn. Fish live bluegill or shiners in the tailwater. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Freshwater Drum - Good: Fish a piece of crawler off the bottom along main channel and side channel current. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Largemouth Bass - Good: Cast frog baits along weed edges in upper portions of backwaters 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Northern Pike - Good: Fish the shallows along weed beds in backwater lakes. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Sauger - No Report: 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Smallmouth Bass - Excellent: Smallmouth are biting in areas with moderate current. Cast spinners and crankbaits along main channel rock shorelines. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Walleye - Slow: Tailwater fishing has tapered off. Fish jigs tipped with a minnow or crawlers on three-way rigs along side channel or closing dams. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast Yellow Perch - Fair: Perch are biting on live minnows and crawlers along weed-lines in about 6 feet of water. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 11 Northeast White Bass - Good: Throw inline spinners along current breaks for white bass action. Watch for schools of minnows jumping as white bass are feeding. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast The river is back on the rise this week after recent rains. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast The river is rising at Dubuque with the level at Lock and Dam 11 near 11.0 feet and 12.6 feet at the RR bridge. Water temperature is around 71, and the water clarity is fair. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Northern Pike - Good: Some pike have been reported biting on minnow imitation lures and the bite for them has indeed picked up. Try gaudy white spinners. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Yellow Perch - Good: Some perch are being picked up incidentally when bluegill fishing. Try to set a pole out with a small worm on the bottom and leave it set, see if a perch will pick it up. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Spawn is over but some crappies still being reported in marina and backwater areas. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Bluegill - Good: Gills can be caught on a bobber and worm rig in the rising backwater areas. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Channel Catfish - Excellent: Try using crawlers or prepared bait around woody structure and moderate current. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Fish Drum in areas of modest current using an egg sinker worm rig. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Largemouth Bass - Excellent: Bass fishing has taken off with anglers concentrating near backwater shorelines as they are stilling on spawning nests. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast Shovelnose sturgeon - Fair: Some shovelnose sturgeon are being reported on worms in the Dubuque tailwaters. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 12 Northeast White Bass - Excellent: Lots of nice white bass are feeding in the tailwater areas and can be caught on small white jigs or spinners. 05/22 05:22
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast The river is back on the rise this week after recent rains. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Channel Catfish - Excellent: Try using crawlers or prepared bait around woody structure and moderate current. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Paddlefish - No Report: Paddlefish season is now closed for the year. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Rainbow Trout - Fair: The last days of fishing the kids trout pond are here as the pond is starting to be choked out with weeds. The pond will be restocked this fall after it all clears up. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast The water level in Pool 13 is rising and is near 11.7 feet at Bellevue. Water clarity is fair and the water temperature is around 71 degrees. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Yellow Perch - Fair: Some reports of yellow perch being caught on worm rigs in the backwater lakes. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Bobber and minnow set to around a foot or a foot and half, fished in the rising backwater lakes. Action not always fast but quality fish can be had with patience. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Northern Pike - Good: Pike have been reported hitting on minnow imitation lures. Some real nice pike over 30 inches are being reported. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are on spawning beds and can be caught on small lures or bobber and worm rigs. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Brown Bullhead - Good: Bullhead bite in the lower Pool 13 can be real good with most people catching Black and Brown Bullhead and egg sinker and worm rigs. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Smallmouth Bass - Excellent: Look for feeding smallmouth on rocky habitats with good flows. Wingdams and day markers provide excellent habitat for this species. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Largemouth Bass - Good: The bite for Largemouth bass is also picking up nicely with anglers using small jigs and spinners. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast Freshwater Drum - Excellent: Fish Drum in areas of modest current using an egg sinker worm rig. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 13 Northeast White Bass - Excellent: Lots of nice white bass are feeding in the tailwater areas and can be caught on small white jigs or spinners. 05/22 05:22
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast The river is back on the rise this week after recent rains. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast The water level is rising at Fulton, and is near 10.9 feet, 13.6 feet at Camanche and 7.9 feet at LeClaire. Water clarity is fair and temperature is around 72 degrees. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Channel Catfish - Excellent: Try using crawlers or prepared bait around woody structure and moderate current. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Black Crappie - Good: A few Black Crappie are being caught on wood in deeper backwater lakes. Bite should return after water warms 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Paddlefish - No Report: Paddlefish season is now closed for the year. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Bluegill - Good: Bluegills are on their spawning nests and easy targets with a bobber and worm. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Smallmouth Bass - Good: Look for feeding smallmouth on rocky habitats with good flows. Wingdams and day markers provide excellent habitat for this species. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Freshwater Drum - Excellent: The drum bite is now on. Use a simple egg sinker and worm rig for the best action. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast Largemouth Bass - Excellent: Bass have moved along the shorelines in backwater areas and have been easily targeted with a variety of lures and natural baits. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 14 Northeast White Bass - Excellent: Lots of nice white bass are feeding in the tailwater areas and can be caught on small white jigs or spinners. 05/22 05:24
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast The river is back on the rise this week after recent rains. If you have angling questions, please call Bellevue Fisheries Management at 563-880-8781. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast The water level at Rock Island is rising and near 11.2 feet. Water clarity is fair and water temperature is around 72 degrees. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast Sauger - No Report: 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast Channel Catfish - Good: Fish a worm or catfish bait in the shallows as the water rises. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast Freshwater Drum - Excellent: A worm and sinker rig is the best tools to use to catch abundant drum. Try fishing current eddies or areas of modest current for best results. 05/22 05:13
Mississippi River Pool 15 Northeast White Bass - No Report: Look for feeding white bass in the tailwaters chasing small minnows. 05/22 05:26
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Upper Mississippi River levels remain high and will rise another foot through next week. Water temperature is in upper 60's to 70. Water is stained. A variety of species are biting, however fish are scattered with high water. Search for areas with moderate to no current. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Water level at Lansing is 9.8 feet and predicted to rise to 10.7 feet Water clarity is cloudy with temperature at 68 degrees. Army Road at New Albin is closed due to high water. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Yellow Perch - Fair: Perch are biting on live minnows and crawlers along weed-lines in about 6 feet of water. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Black Crappie - Fair: Fish the flooded timber as the river rises using light tackle and small plastic baits for spring crappie. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Channel Catfish - Good: Catfish anglers have been catching a few channel cats this week on crawlers. 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Largemouth Bass - Good: Cast frog baits along weed edges in upper portions of backwaters 05/23 06:48
Mississippi River Pool 9 Northeast Northern Pike - Good: Fish the shallows along weed beds in backwater lakes. Shore Slough at Lansing has been good fishing for northern pike. 05/23 06:48
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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

March 2024 Fishing Report - we have our own March Madness fun with Iowa's Sweet 16 most fished for species bracket, plus an early spring fishing preview and tips

April 2024 Fishing Report - it's walleye spawning seasoning, plus community trout stockings and the Iowa Walleye Challenge

May 2024 Fishing Report - spring fishing preview, plus Outdoor Day with the Iowa Cubs and Iowa Walleye Challenge updates