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Lake Information

County: Union

Acreage: 275

Recreational Amenities

Boat Ramps? Yes

Boat Rental? No

Skiing? No

Swimming? No

There are no zebra mussels in this lake.

Fishing Outlook  ( Full PDF Report )

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Fish Status



Only one Bluegill was collected during the 2023 electrofishing survey. The severe drought of 2022 led to low water levels and severe fish kills in Lyerla Lake, which seems to have impacted Bluegill numbers based on survey results.


Very Good

Bowfin are numerous in Lyerla Lake and should provide good opportunities for anglers with the proper gear. Bowfin are aggressive predators and very strong fighters. Similar to Gar, Bowfin are a native species and should not be viewed as detrimental.



Lyerla Lake contains a quality crappie fishery consisting of both Black and White Crappie. However, the population is heavily regulated by water levels. During the drought of 2022, severe fish kills seems to have impacted the crappie population, as very few were collected in comparison to 2021 survey results. Despite low numbers in the 2023 electrofishing sample, several White Crappie over 12 inches were collected.


Very Good

Shortnose Gar and Spotted Gar are numerous in Lyerla Lake. Although not popular with most anglers, gar can provide great angling opportunities for anglers with the proper gear to target them. Gar should not be viewed as detrimental species, as they are native and have been shown to have little impact on traditional sport species.

Location: Lyerla Lake is located in Union County within Union County State Fish & Wildlife Area near Ware, IL.

Description: Lyerla Lake is roughly 270 acres in size and is very shallow. There is only one gravel boat ramp. Lyerla Lake is a floodplain lake that is frequently flooded with water from adjacent creeks.

History and Status of the Sport Fishery: Similar to Horseshoe Lake in Alexander County, Lyerla Lake possesses a good crappie fishery, but other traditional sport fishes are few in number. Fish biomass is dominated by species such as Freshwater Drum, Silver Carp, Common Carp, Buffalo, and Gar. Due to low water levels, fish kills often occur due to low oxygen levels. Anglers should be warned that water levels are often very low in the summer and fall, which can limit accessibility of boats with outboard motors.

Additional Lake Information: Site Regulations:
All Fish - 2 Pole and Line Fishing Only
All fishing and boat traffic prohibited from October 15 through the last day of February.

Contact Information:
Union County State Fish & Wildlife Area
IDNR Fisheries Biologist, Nick Abell