Cedar trees were sunk in and around the Turpin Branch area of Truman Lake. Underwater brush provides structure that attracts bait fish and sport fish, providing a good place for anglers to catch fish, especially crappie.

Biologists for the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) recently completed a fish habitat project at Truman Lake. Cedar trees were sunk in and around the Turpin Branch area of Truman Lake. Underwater brush provides structure that attracts bait fish and sport fish, providing a good place for anglers to catch fish, especially crappie.

MDC has conducted similar fish habitat improvement projects in recent years at lakes throughout Missouri. The project completed earlier this spring was in the Osage River arm of Truman Lake, near the Osage Bluff Marina in the area of the Route KK island. The GPS coordinates for the new sunken brush piles will be posted later on the MDC website, said Chris Brooke, MDC fisheries management biologist. Habitat project locations at the state’s lakes can be located by accessing the free MDC MO Fishing app, available for download at https://short.mdc.mo.gov/ZJZ

As reservoirs age, original fish habitat decays and vanishes. The habitat is important for baitfish and various species of sport fish. MDC staff and volunteers, in partnership with other public agencies, provide new habitat with sunken brush piles. Biologists find the most successful fish attractors are cedars or hardwood trees that resist decay for longer periods than softwood trees, such as evergreen species used for Christmas trees.

Anglers can count on losing a few more lures and hooks in hang ups around brush piles. But they can also hope for putting more keeper crappie on the stringer. Some anglers also find success fishing for largemouth bass or channel catfish near underwater habitat, depending on the season, and water and weather conditions.

For more information about Truman Lake habitat projects, maps, and GPS locators, contact Brooke via email, Chris.Brooke@mdc.mo.gov(link sends e-mail). Missouri offers many fishing opportunities statewide in rivers, lakes, and ponds, including in urban areas. To connect your family with the outdoors, visit http://mymdc.mo.gov.