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Chickahominy Lake - Fishing Opportunities

The largemouth bass fishing at this lake has been decent over many years. Anglers must be willing to adapt to the abundant aquatic vegetation that sprouts up each summer in the lake. The results of the 2006 electrofishing survey show that the largemouth bass population is in good shape overall. The sample showed a good proportion of bass in the 2 to 4 pound range. The presence of numerous year classes and good recruitment from the 2005 spawn will continue to maintain the bass fishery. Physical examination of the fish showed them to be in good condition and this was supported by an index of relative weight. The largest bass caught in our sample was 21 inches in length and weighed 5.7 lbs. The 2006 catch rate ranks higher than the previous sample conducted in 2003.

Chickahominy Lake has been well known for good bowfin and chain pickerel action. The 2006 electrofishing survey found an abundant population of bowfin. Many of the bowfins were in the 3 to 6 pound range with the largest one estimated at around 10 pounds. Anglers looking for bass will be pleasantly surprised by the strong fighting bowfin on the end of their line. The sample revealed a fair number of chain pickerel along the shoreline. Most of the chain pickerel action occurs earlier in the season during the February to March time frame when the water is just starting to warm up.

The electrofishing survey and the trap net sampling revealed an abundant population of bluegills present in the lake. The majority of the bluegills were less than 6 inches in length. A few larger bluegills in the 6 to 8 inch range were collected. The lake does produce some larger redear sunfish. The sampling revealed some quality-sized redear sunfish in the 8 to 9 inch range with the largest one measured at 10 inches in length.

Our trap surveys in March 2006 indicate that the black crappie population is in decent shape, with a high percentage of the sample consisting of fish in the 10 to 12 inch range. Anglers are encouraged to try their luck for black crappies in the various creek arms that lie on the northern shoreline. These shallow water areas will warm quickly during the early spring. Schools of black crappies will cruise the shorelines in search of food before the spawning season arrives.

For some time now, the reservoir also has provided a popular catch-and-release fishery for anadromous (sea run) striped bass that have passed through the fish ladder at Walker's Dam (for additional information see the Regulations sidebar).