Fishing & Boating

Fishing Report

Columbus Lake - 10/16/2018 12:57:07 PM



The bass bite is picking up as the water temps continue to fall. It took 18 pounds to win the annual frog fishing tournament there this past weekend. Some anglers are targeting the deeper sides of old river runs and old creek runs, but look for shallow vegetation to be holding fish as well. If you find the shad, the bass aren’t too far away. Spinnerbaits, Texas-rigs, and shallow crankbaits are good lure choices. Some topwater/sub-surface action can be had around the grass beds in those creeks and backwater areas with frogs, buzzbaits, and white swim jigs. Covering water seems to be key. A few anglers are targeting the lower end of the Buttahatchie. Anglers are using small crankbaits, spinnerbaits, and shakeyheads there. As water temps continue dropping and more shad start moving to the backwaters, keeping a topwater/shad imitating lure tied on is a good idea.




Target the deeper old river runs and some of the deeper backwater areas like the gravel pits. Any woody cover in those deeper river runs should be a magnet for crappie. Both minnows and jigs should get some bites. Look for the bite to start picking up as we move further into the fall.




The catfish anglers are targeting the navigational channel (particularly around the mouths of the old river runs) and also below the dam. Jugs and trotlines are good around the river runs while anglers are using rod-n-reel combos below the dam. The east bank pier is also a good option for anglers who prefer to rod-n-reel fish. Night crawlers, cut/whole shad, and liver are all good bait options, but cut/whole shad is typically the better bait choice this time of year.


Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Fisheries Biologists use various sampling methods to assess the fish populations in the State’s waters.   Sampling results for selected water bodies are summarized in Reel Facts Sheets.

Fishing Regulations

Black bass (combined largemouth, spotted and smallmouth bass)
Crappie (combined black and white)

Lengths to Release:
Black bass: 14 inches and under
Crappie: 9 inches and under
Paddlefish:  All lengths

Creel Limit (per person, per day):
Black bass: 10
Crappie: 30
Paddlefish:  0

Paddlefish harvest and possession is prohibited in the Tenn-Tom Waterway, Tombigbee River and it's tributaries.

Walleye harvest and possession is prohibited in the Tombigbee River and it's tributaries north of Hwy 278 (Monroe, Itawamba and Prentiss Counties).

Statewide creel limits apply to all other fish species.

Additional Information:
From Columbus Lake dam spillway downstream to Mile Marker 334, including the auxiliary spillway and associated bank fishing access areas in the Tombigbee River cutoff below the dam.

  • Anglers can only use one pole or rod per person.
  • Artificial lures with no more than 3 treble hooks no larger than #2 may be used anytime.
  • The use of baited or bare treble hooks is illegal.
  • No other gear can be used in these waters except that dip or landing nets, cast nets, boat mounted scoops, wire baskets, minnow seines, and minnow traps may be used to capture bait. Anglers keeping minnows, shad, nongame gross fish and non-native fish caught with these gear types must immediately place their catch on ice or in a dry container.
  • From Dec 1 until the last day of February - Anglers can only fish with 2 single hooks no larger than #2.  Hooks must be secured at least one inch apart.
  • From March 1 to Nov 30 - Anglers can only fish with 2 single hooks of any size.  Hooks must be secured at least one inch apart.
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