At Everything Smalmouth, we are always interested in efforts to improve the habitat for smallmouth bass fishing so we were excited to see the removal of a dam that will improve the habitat for Des Plaines River smallmouth bass.
The other exciting thing is that they are stocking the river with tagged smallmouth bass to “kick start” the population of bronzebacks.
Des Plaines River Smallmouth Bass
The Des Plaines again looks like a river, with riffles, pools and bends. It sounds like a river, with the sound of running water.
‘‘Since we have taken the dam out and have that new habitat upstream and it doesn’t have smallmouth on it, we figured we would give it a kick-start,’’ Pescitelli said. ‘‘Hopefully they will spread out and make more smallmouth, even downstream.’’
If fishermen catch one of the smallmouth, they should note the identification number and call (630) 553-0164. And release the fish.
By existing regulation, fishermen must release smallmouth caught below the site of the former dam. Biologists also are asking that they release any caught above the dam, too.
‘‘The main thing is we got the dam out, and hopefully this will be a kick-start,’’ Pescitelli said.
Biologists already have seen changes. Highly migratory channel catfish already have returned to the pool above the former dam.
‘‘In the pool behind the dam, which has recovered and has pools and riffles, there were tons of minnows already,’’ Pescitelli said. Source
The Des Plaines River runs through Wisconsin and northern Illinois and eventually empties into the Kankakee River.
It is well known for Pike and Walleye and returning the river to its natural flows should help the Des Plaines River smallmouth bass populations as well as many other game fish.