Even Better Lake Pleasant Fishing May Be Coming

Thousands of anglers who enjoy fishing at Lake Pleasant may be in for a treat, thanks to an ongoing Arizona Game and Fish Department study.

Researchers are tagging fish at the lake with sonic transmitters and monitoring their movements, diets, and reproductive rates, to figure out how to best manage both the striped bass and largemouth bass populations.

"Over the past decade or so, some anglers have become concerned that largemouth bass-fishing opportunities have declined at Lake Pleasant," says Arizona Game and Fish Department researcher Bill Stewart. "We want to make sure anglers have great fishing conditions for largemouth bass, striped bass, and other popular fish in the lake."

For a long time, striped bass fishing in Arizona was limited to the Colorado River system. However, when the Central Arizona Project (CAP) canal system was built in the 1970s through 1990s to provide more water to central Arizona, striped bass were introduced into Lake Pleasant.

Federal officials had feared the striped bass or striper eggs and larvae would not survive pumping from Lake Havasu through the CAP canal to the lake.

However, it appears a striper population has become established in Lake Pleasant.