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Each year, biologists working on Lake Oahe collect information on the fisheries from population surveys and information on angler use and harvest from creel surveys.

By looking at trends in fish populations and angler use and harvest, predictions can be made about fishing on Lake Oahe for 2015.

Key Issues for Lake Oahe in 2015

  • Walleye abundance is near the normal lake wide average, with majority of the population around 15 inches.
  • Walleye daily and possession limits have remained the statewide regulation of 4 per day with at most only 1 over 20 inches and 8 total in possession.
  • Rainbow smelt abundance is low due to high loss through Oahe Dam from the flood of 2011 and poor production since; but smelt have potential to rebound if spring conditions are ideal for their spawn.
  • Northern pike abundance has remained stable, with many reaching a size attractive to anglers.
  • Chinook salmon fishing success is unknown for 2015, but stocking will continue to provide a future fishery.
  • Lake Oahe should have good fishing for many species in 2015.
  • Boat access may be an issue depending on water levels for Lake Oahe.

Protect our Waters

You can do your part for the health and productivity of South Dakota's waters by being proactive in preventing the spread of invasive plant, fish and animal species that threaten to crowd out native species.