KANSAS CITY, Mo. — After several days of unsettling weather it might be a great time to get away, relax and put a line in the water. Good news for anglers, Lake Amarugia is open for a full summer of fishing for the first time since it was renovated in 2012.
The Missouri Department of Conservation began the project to deepen the lake and to improve the fishery. Now that the renovation is complete the 45-Acre lake at Amarugia Highlands Conservation Area is refilled. The lake was stocked in 2016 and now that the population has rebuilt it is now ready for summer.
The lake was stocked with different species of fish including channel catfish, largemouth bass, and bluegill and redear sunfish. Even though MDC chose not to stock white crappie and bullhead catfish, they were introduced to the lake through an unauthorized stocking or from the watershed. The overpopulation of the white crappie and bullhead are having a negative effect on the populations of the fish that were stocked, said Jake Colehour, MDC fisheries management biologist.
The daily creel limit for crappie at the lake is 30 fish, with no length limit. The department is encouraging anglers to catch and keep a full limit of crappie. The same is true for bullheads, where the daily limit is 20 fish.
Despite low populations for largemouth bass at the minimum length of 15-inch legal limit anglers can catch and keep two largemouth.
“But I would encourage anglers not to keep any largemouth bass at the lake at this time,” Colehour said.
Anglers can keep four channel catfish. The upside is the lake has a lot of hungry fish.
“I would say with the sheer number of crappie, bluegill, and bullheads, you’re going to catch something.” Colehour said. “If you put a piece of worm out there, you’re going to catch a fish.”
For more information about Amarugia Highlands Conservation Area and the lake, visit https;//short.mdc.mo.gov/ZxA.