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Whitley County’s Robinson Lake holds big bass
Start Date: 6/14/2017
Event Description:
You’ve heard the saying “Big things come in small packages.” Or is it, “Good things come in small packages”?

For bass fishermen, both are true at Robinson Lake, a small natural lake in Whitley County north of Larwill.

Despite covering only 59 acres, Robinson Lake holds more trophy-size largemouth bass than much larger lakes, according to DNR fisheries biologists.

Recently, biologists surveyed the lake by electrofishing for 30 minutes. They captured more 18-inch-and-larger bass at Robinson Lake than they have at any other area lake.

“We caught 121 bass,” said Jed Pearson, DNR biologist. “Of those, 76 were 14 to 18 inches long, and eight bass were 18 inches and bigger.”

Four were longer than 20 inches.

“We’re lucky if we catch one bass that size during most surveys,” Pearson said.

So what makes such a small lake so good for big bass?

“First, we have a special rule in place to protect big bass from harvest,” Pearson said. “Second, the lake is highly productive with lots of forage, including gizzard shad, suckers, bluegills and other fish bass love to eat.”

Robinson Lake is one of only a handful of lakes where an 18-inch minimum size limit and two-bass per day limit is in place. Most lakes have a 14-inch minimum size limit.

The rule has been in effect there since 1996 after the DNR purchased the lake and much of the adjoining property from the Boy Scouts. Known as the Deniston Resource Area, named after a conservation officer killed in a plane crash, the lake and property is managed by the DNR divisions of Fish & Wildlife and Nature Preserves.

Pearson added a third reason why Robinson Lake holds so many big bass.

Fishermen release nearly all of the bass they catch there, even the big ones.

“By doing so, that keeps them around to be caught again,” he said. “That’s a good thing at Robinson. Given the lake’s small size, overharvest of big bass is still possible if fishermen take out the big ones.”

Apparently both sayings are true. Big things and good things come in small packages.

To view all DNR news releases, please see
Contact Information:
Name: Jed Pearson
Phone: (260) 244-6805
State calendar entry type:
Press Release
State calendar entry category:
State calendar classification:
  • Residents
  • Visiting and Playing
  • Agency Name:
  • Natural Resources, Department of

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