MDC says trout harvest to begin in Jackson, Farmington, Perryville, Sikeston on Feb. 1

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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) says trout may be harvested from Rotary Lake in Jackson, Giessing Lake in Farmington, Legion Lake in Perryville, and Recreation Complex Pond in Sikeston starting Feb. 1.

MDC Fisheries Management Biologist Salvador Mondragon said cooler than average temperatures caused a reduction in fishing activity in November and December.

“But if the lakes don’t freeze, we should have an excellent opener to the trout harvest season,” he said.  

MDC stocked trout in November at the start of the catch-and-release season.  

“These fish provide a great amount of fishing opportunities through the fall and winter months when warmwater fishing is at a lull,” Mondragon said. “Along with catchable-size fish, a few ‘lunker’ trout were also stocked at each lake.”

MDC reminds anglers they must release trout caught now through January 31.  

Starting Feb. 1, any bait may be used, and four trout may be kept regardless of size. All anglers between the ages of 16 and 64 must have a valid Missouri fishing permit, and any angler harvesting trout must also possess a trout permit.  

Mondragon said that based on years past, many trout can be typically caught during the first week of trout harvest season.

Many anglers frequently catch limits of trout using light weight or ultra-lite fishing tackle or fly tackle, he said.

“I recommend anglers use 2-4 lb. test line, small hooks and little or no added weight to their line,” Mondragon said. “Baits include almost any type of small spinner, small crank baits, and natural baits such as worms, cheese, and commercially produced dough baits.”

Get a free map from MDC that shows all managed trout waters in Missouri, stocked winter trout fishing areas around the state, regulations, permit and tag information, and MDC local phone numbers by emailing and requesting “FIS210 - MAP TROUT FISHING IN MO.”

Find winter trout fishing areas online at

For additional information, contact the MDC’s Southeast Regional Office at (573) 290-5730 or visit