Levy and Citrus Counties

Lake RousseauAn impoundment of the Withlacoochee River, as part of the original Cross Florida Barge Canal project, this large lake is full of cypress trees, pennywort islands and sometimes hydrilla. Abundant cover and structure grow plenty of bluegill, redear sunfish, catfish, black crappie and largemouth bass. The deeper river channel is always good to locate and fish underwater bends. The rest of the lake is referred to as the "flats" or the backwaters.

Local contacts:
Big Bass Village 352-447-3474, toll free 1-877-463-4742
Lake Rousseau RV Park/Fishing Resort 352-795-6336, lakerousseaurvpark.com External link
Dunnellon Bait and Tackle 352-465-2755


Popular species:

Popular fish species

Fish graphics by Duane Raver, Jr.


TrophyCatchTrophyCatch Tracker

TrophyCatch External link is FWC's citizen-science program that rewards anglers for documenting and releasing trophy bass 8 pounds or larger. The following TrophyCatch bass have been submitted from Lake Rousseau:

Lunker Club (8 – 9.9 pounds): 89

Trophy Club (10 – 12.9 pounds): 16

Hall of Fame Club (13+ pounds): 1


Current Forecast:

Cooling temperatures should lengthen the window of daily bass activity. The Largemouth Bass have been very productive in recent weeks. In the last quarter, four tournaments have produced winning bag weight of 14lbs or more. Live shiners are producing the most consistent strikes from bass. Troll shiners along edges of vegetation and channel drop-offs. The backwater areas of the reservoir are beginning to see increased productivity. Rattle traps and frogs fished on top of the hydrilla are killer in these areas. The panfish bite is very good right now as well. Night crawlers are the preferred bait at the moment (late-September), though live crickets and grass shrimp are excellent alternatives. Fish areas 8-10 feet deep, near the edges of vegetation. The catfish are reported to be big and plentiful. Cut baits fished along the bottom is the preferred method for many anglers. Target the edges of channels, near stumps and other submersed structures. Black Crappie fishing should pick up by late October. Live crickets, beetle spins, and grass shrimp are common, effective baits.


FWC Facts:
In the past, snook were known as "soapfish" when some sections of the "soapy" tasting skin were left on the fillets due to poor cleaning practices.

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