Anglers, business owners report best fishing in decades.
Showcasing the continued focus on improving Grand Lake St. Marys by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), business owners and anglers report fishing catches at the lake are at the best level in recent memory.
“ODNR and the State of Ohio have committed a great number of resources to improving the water quality at Grand Lake Saint Marys,” said ODNR Director James Zehringer. “The great fishing reports we are receiving from anglers this year are an encouraging sign that our efforts are making a positive impact.”
Recent fishing tournaments for largemouth bass and catfish, in particular, have ended with record catches in sizes and numbers of fish. Many anglers have reported excellent catches of crappie, bass and catfish, along with bluegill and carp. For the past two years, ODNR has stocked yellow perch to expand fishing opportunities and to remove rough fish, such as carp. The rough fish removal helps to improve water quality and ultimately reduce Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs).
Anglers visiting Grand Lake St. Marys should know that fish at the lake are under no special advisories for consumption and are considered safe to eat. Largemouth bass are appropriate for eating up to two meals a week, and all other fish can be consumed once a week. These recommendations are based on testing and guidelines developed by the Ohio Department of Health, in cooperation with the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and ODNR. There are no restrictions for eating fish from Grand Lake St. Marys based on elevated levels of algal toxins in the lake.
ODNR, working with state, local and federal partners, has committed substantial resources toward Grand Lake St. Marys. In addition to the fish removal, ODNR is: working with producers to implement nutrient management plans that will reduce runoff from farms in the watershed; installing a treatment train to improve water running into the lake; removing record amounts of sediment from the lakebed through dredging efforts; and improving aeration in the lake and its channels.