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Mississippi Fishing Report

Lakes & Reservoirs

Arkabutla Sponsored by
Date 18-May-16
Water Condition
Water Temperature  

Conditions : ?Arkabutla: Water level 233.59 ft, falling 0.4 ft/day, 13.6 ft over rule curve Tuesday. The Corps is still taking safety precautions for the dam and emergency spillway channel areas. There are some road closures due to high water. The Corps normally lets the lake rise from winter pool (210 ft) to summer pool (220 ft) from May 1 - 15

The lake is falling, but more rain is on the way this week. Access is limited due to road closures and several ramps being underwater.

Fish are being pulled out of thousands of acres of heavy cover with rapidly falling water levels. Fish will orient to deeper water (creeks, sloughs, river, etc.) to prevent being stranded as the water falls. Folks have been catching a few crappie fishing the edges of vegetation with jigs and/or minnows or trolling crankbaits 8 - 12 ft deep just out from the bushes. Expect a good catfish bite on worms in the tributaries after rains. Otherwise, trotlines are your best bet. Grabbling season started May 1, but water temperatures are a little cool for much success with few reports lately. For Largemouth Bass, look for clearer water and try topwaters, buzzbaits, or spinnerbaits in flooded cover on the edges of deeper channels. White Bass are back in the main lake; fish jigs or small crankbaits over a sandy points. There are no size or number limits for White Bass. Carp, buffalo, and gar are moving in the shallows if you want to try some bowfishing.

The spillway had one gate open at 17.0 ft (5000 cfs) Tuesday. Even though there is a lot of water coming through right now, folks have been catching good numbers of Blue Catfish (white humpbacks) from 2 - 5 pounds fishing minnows or shad from the steps.

Reported by: MDWFP

Patterns Lures & Spinners

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About: - Arkabutla Lake is an impoundment of the Coldwater River and lies just east of I-55 near Hernando. It is the shallowest of the big lakes (Sardis, Enid and Grenada)and the least affected by spring rises and fall drawdowns. Its many creek channels and coves and the backwaters off the Coldwater offer excellent bass cover. The bass fishing is excellent, and it rarely gets pressured.

Crappie spawning in Arkabutla is normally from the first of April through mid-May, but it may vary a week or more depending on weather, moon phase, etc. Crappie spawned nearly a month later than normal the last couple of springs because a cold winter made main lake temperatures where crappie overwinter very cold. Main lake temperatures are warmer this winter and a more normal spawning time is expected unless we get an unusually cool spring. Not all crappie spawn at the same time; larger females usually spawn first and get the best spots. Black Crappie usually spawn earlier than White Crappie (males of both species get dark during the spawn; do not use color to tell the species apart).

Location: Tate & Desoto Counties, 7.5 miles West of Coldwater, off Coldwater-Arkabutla Road.

Misc Info: - The daily creel limit for crappie on Arkabutla Lake is 20 per person. The minimum length limit for crappie is 12 inches. Anglers fishing Arkabutla Lake may use no more than 5 poles per person. The 12 inch length limit does not apply to the reservoir spillway, but the spillway has a 20 crappie creel limit.

Arkabutla Lake Level



- Near Flood Stage
238' - Minor Flooding

240' - Moderate Flooding

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