Citrus County

Tsala Apopka ChainLake Tsala Apopka is 19,111 acres of shallow, heavily vegetated marshes intermingled with open water pools. Water control structures separate the lake into three main pools named after nearby towns: Floral City, Inverness and Hernando.

Public boat ramps are available 1/4 mile east of the intersection of U.S. Highway 41 and S.R. 200 (Hernando Pool); 1-1/4 mile east of City of Inverness on S.R. 470 (Inverness Pool); and on Duval Island Road off C.R. 48, one mile east of U.S. Highway 41 (Floral City Pool).

Local Contacts:  River Land Bait and Tackle (352-465-2755) for more up-to-date information.

 

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 the Tsala Apopka Chain:

Lunker Club (8 – 9.9 pounds): 92

Trophy Club (10 – 12.9 pounds): 38

 

 Current Forecast:

Fishing has been pretty slow with the heat but should pick up as temperatures start to cool, barring any major storms. Until then, fishing early or late has been successful. There should be plenty of water in this chain of lakes. As with most lakes in the late fall and winter, look for Largemouth Bass to be moving into shallower water as the spawn nears. Target submerged willow tree bases for these sanctuaries are known holdouts for Largemouth Bass. Lightly weighted Texas-rigged plastic worms or crayfish imitations will allow anglers to flip baits within the security of these shaded environments. Also target areas that have flowing water. Fish orient to these currents and wait for opportunities to prey on forage carried by these flows. Tannin stained waters provide an element of cover not present in clear conditions. Use darker colored lures or live bait such as shrimp that has a unique smell. If the conditions are windy, focus your efforts on the shores where the chop is breaking as this seems to be where hungry bass will wait for forage fish. Spinnerbaits and other rattling lures are good because subtle bites are not likely. Expect the fishing action to be spotty based on local reports. Black crappie fishing picks up this time of year and many successful anglers dip minnows close to lily pads early in this quarter. Casting white plastic grubs at the edge of maidencane grass seems to work also. If water clarity is high, use a smaller diameter leader to hide your line from discerning fish eyes. It’s hard to say if one lake in the chain will be better than others. Interested anglers should seek information from local tackle shops, internet message boards, or other anglers to narrow down their choices and target their effort. Catfish can be targeted near bridges and rip-rap by using cut baits or stink baits fished on the bottom. Also use bait on the bottom for bluegill and redear sunfish.



FWC Facts:
Studies indicate fish-and-wildlife activities contribute more than $36 billion a year to Florida's economy.

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