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DECATUR, LAKE


Lake Information

County: Macon

Acreage: 2905

Recreational Amenities

Boat Fishing? Unrestricted

Boat Ramps? Yes

Boat Rental? No

Skiing? Yes

Swimming? No

Picnicking? Yes

Camping? No

larger map link Reas Bridge William St Dam


    Click on area names for a more detailed map.
    Decatur Dam, Reas Bridge, William Street Bridge

Maps are not intended for navigation.


There are no zebra mussels in this lake.


Fish Stocking

Year

Species

Size

Count

2020

Striped Bass x White Bass (Wiper)

Fingerling 1 - 3"

31449

2020

Walleye

Fingerling 1 - 3"

74864

2021

Striped Bass x White Bass (Wiper)

Fingerling 1 - 3"

74172

2021

Walleye

Fingerling 1 - 3"

71562


Additional information for stocking on DECATUR, LAKE


Fishing Outlook  ( Full PDF Report )

Click here for a list of all reports.

Species

Rank

Fish Status

BLUEGILL

Fair

Bluegill fishing is fair. Few fish collected exceed 7.5 inches.

CARP

Good

Common carp are abundant with fish exceeding 11 lbs.

CHANNEL CATFISH

Very Good

Channel catfish are abundant in the lake through natural recruitment. The average catch goes from 1 - 4 lbs., with the occasional fish over 10 pounds caught.

CRAPPIE

Excellent

Both white and black crappie are abundant. Growth rates are good. Anglers may still catch crappie up to 14+ inches and 1.3 lbs with a good number of fish over the 10-inch mminimum harvest.

FLATHEAD CATFISH

Good

Flathead catfish are high in abundance with trophy-sized fish up to 60 pounds caught recently.

FRESHWATER DRUM

Excellent

Freshwater Drum, commonly called drum “perch”, are abundant with fish exceeding 10 lbs.

HYBRID STRIPED BASS (WIPERS)

Fair

are stocked annually with population density varying with stocking density and emigration over the spillway. Numbers of hybrids are caught below the spillway in early spring, however they can be found in the lake by those who target them.

LARGEMOUTH BASS

Fair

are moderate in abundance due to a lack of aquatic vegetation for nursery habitat. Bass from ½ - 4 lbs. have been collected in surveys with fish over 5 lbs. caught by anglers on occasion. Efforts to establish aquatic vegetation will hopefully improve the largemouth bass fishery.

WALLEYE

Excellent

are abundant with a very healthy population of young-of-year through 6+lb fish observed during our annual survey. Growth rates are great, with many of the fish at or above 14”.

WHITE BASS

Excellent

are usually very abundant in Lake Decatur. They have excellent growth rates and fish exceeding 2 lbs are routinely collected in IDNR surveys. A fish kill affecting only white bass occurred during the summer of 2020, however the population will likely recover quickly.

Location: Lake Decatur is located on the east side of the City of Decatur, in Macon County.

Description: The lake covers 3,093 surface acres with a maximum depth of 22 feet and average depth of six feet. Public boat launching facilities are available with the City of Decatur (217-424-2837) collecting boating access fees. All tournaments must be registered.

History and Status of the Sport Fishery: The fish population in Lake Decatur is intensively surveyed every two years. The fish are measured, weighed, and scales collected before releasing them alive. Hybrid striped bass and walleye populations are surveyed annually and are maintained by annual stockings through IDNR hatcheries.

Buffalo, Redhorse suckers, and Carpsuckers are common, but few are caught by fishermen.
Yellow bass, Longear sunfish, Green sunfish, Orangespotted sunfish, and Yellow bullheads are collected, but are seldom harvested by fishermen due to the small size attained by these species.
Smallmouth bass, Rock bass, and Redear sunfish are very rarely collected and are likely very rare in the anglers catch.

Additional Lake Information: Pole and line fishing only, with no more than two poles allowed per person, with only two hooks or lures per pole. All statewide regulations are in effect. One-half hour after sunset the entire lake is no wake.

Site Regulations:

Largemouth or smallmouth bass: 14" minimum length limit; 6 fish daily limit
Walleye, sauger or saugeye: 14" minimum length limit; 6 fish daily limit
White or hybrid striped bass: Only 3 fish 17" or larger; no limit less than 17"
White, black or hybrid crappie: 10" minimum length limit; 10 fish daily limit

Contact Information:
Lake Decatur Lake Patrol Office
Joe Nihiser
217-424-2837
IDNR Fisheries Biologist, Jim Garavaglia
217-345-2420

There were 26 tournaments held on this waterbody in 2021.

Species Total Fish Caught
Crappie 685
Largemouth Bass 389

Top 5 Largemouth Bass caught on this waterbody in 2021 tournaments:

1     5.88 lbs
2     5.70 lbs
3     4.91 lbs
4     4.80 lbs
5     4.75 lbs

Top 5 Total Tournament Weight of Largemouth Bass caught on this waterbody in 2021 tournaments:

1 121.15 lbs
2 76.23 lbs
3 75.50 lbs
4 74.68 lbs
5 67.14 lbs


Multiple day tournaments are listed with * end date.

Interested in participating in one of these public tournaments? Contact us with tournament ID for more information.

2021 – 2022 Approved or Pending Tournaments
Start Date ID Approval Ramp Location Bank/Boat
Hook/Bow
Max Boats Species Youth? Open to Public?
April-1620985PendingNelson Park boat
hook
30Crappie
NoYes
April-2321070PendingNelson Park boat
hook
20Crappie
NoNo
April-2421024PendingNelson Park boat
hook
25Crappie
NoYes
May-0521026PendingNelson Park boat
hook
25Crappie
NoYes
May-1921027PendingNelson Park boat
hook
25Crappie
NoYes
May-2220435PendingNelson Park boat
hook
18Largemouth Bass
NoNo
May-2621028PendingNelson Park boat
hook
25Crappie
NoYes
June-0921029PendingNelson Park boat
hook
25Crappie
NoYes
June-1221236PendingNelson Park boat
hook
18Largemouth Bass
NoNo
June-1621030PendingNelson Park boat
hook
25Crappie
NoYes
September-0121031PendingNelson Park boat
hook
25Crappie
NoYes
September-1521033PendingNelson Park boat
hook
25Crappie
NoYes
September-1720986PendingNelson Park boat
hook
30Crappie
NoYes
September-1820447PendingNelson Park boat
hook
6Largemouth Bass
NoNo
October-0221025PendingNelson Park boat
hook
25Crappie
NoYes
October-1520956PendingNelson Park boat
hook
19Crappie
NoNo
November-2720962PendingNelson Park boat
hook
19Crappie
NoYes