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Citizens Lake

Warren County, IL
Warren County, IL
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Citizen’s Lake is located in Warren County at the west edge of Monmouth along U.S. Route 34.
This small watershed impoundment of 26 acres is owned by the City of Monmouth and managed for fishing by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. The lake has a south basin of 17.7 acres with a maximum depth of 33 feet and a north basin of 8.3 acres with maximum depth of 13 feet. The two basins are connected by a short channel that is spanned by a historic 1895 bridge. In 2016, the bridge was dedicated to Ken Russell the longtime IDNR District Fisheries biologist who helped relocate the bridge to Citizen’s Lake. Most of the 1.4 miles of shoreline is accessible to bank fishing. Boat ramps are available on both basins and a small trailer campground is situated near the north lake basin.
All Fish - 2 pole and line fishing only.
Large or Smallmouth Bass:
- Protected Slot Length Limit with 1 fish greater than or equal to 15 inches and/or 5 fish less than 12 inches daily.
Bluegill or Redear Sunfish:
- 10 Fish Daily Harvest Limit
Channel Catfish:
- 6 Fish Daily Harvest Limit
Trout:
- Fall Closed Season
26 acres
LAKE SIZE
33 feet
MAX DEPTH
755 feet
ELEVATION
BOATING RESTRICTIONS
Electric only
AMENITIES
Boat Landing
Camping
Swimming
Boat Rentals
Picnicking
Skiing
FISH TO CATCH
Channel Catfish
Rainbow Trout
NOTE: This list may not be all inclusive of all speices present in Citizens Lake.
FISHING OUTLOOK
BLACK CRAPPIE
Developing DEVELOPING
In 2019, no black crappie were sampled in the fall electrofishing survey. It appears as if most if not all of the black crappie population was eliminated in the fall/winter fish kill of 2018. This population was present in a high density of fish below 8 inches in length and poor body condition. The reduction or elimination of this population will be beneficial in the long term. In the fall of 2019, 1,500 crappie were restocked into Citizen’s lake in the form of a hybrid between the Blacknose crappie and a white crappie. The growth rate and reproductive potential of this hybrid crappie will be evaluated in the future in Citizen’s Lake and Lake Eureka.
BLUEGILL
Developing DEVELOPING
The bluegill population was sampled by 114 fish in the fall electrofishing surveys. The majority of the sampled bluegill population was from .5 to 3 inches in length, and was from stocking or natural reproduction in 2019. Surviving bluegill from the 2018/2019 fish kill had reached almost 7 inches in length at had a very good body condition value of 99.
CHANNEL CATFISH
Developing DEVELOPING
The channel catfish population was not sampled in the fall electrofishing survey. 842 channel catfish at 8.4 inches in length were stocked in July of 2019. These fish should grow very fast in the fertile water of Citizen’s Lake. An annual stocking of non-vulnerable channel catfish is scheduled for the future.
LARGEMOUTH BASS
Developing DEVELOPING
The largemouth bass population was evaluated by 160 bass from the electrofishing survey. The largemouth bass population was represented by a majority of the fish from 3.1 to 7 inches in length. These fish were a combination of stocked and reproduced fish in the lake. They were in very good body condition. A small number of the larger stocked fish of 2019 were also sampled up to 20 inches in length.
RAINBOW TROUT
Good GOOD
In 2018, no rainbow trout were stocked due to the poor water conditions and potential for low oxygen stress in late September and October in Citizen’s Lake. In 2019, the ranbow trout stocking did resume at Citizen’s Lake with an estimated 800 fish stocked in October.
REDEAR SUNFISH
Developing DEVELOPING
The redear sunfish population was sampled by 8 fish from 2 to 3.5 inches in the fall electrofishing survey. These fish are from probably both the fall 2018 stocking and natural reproduction in 2019. The current redear population is rated as a low density with the larger fish up to 10 inches in length from the brood stocking in 2019.
PLACES TO SAY
STAY 22: Citizens Lake
HISTORY AND STATUS OF FISHERY
The lake and its sport fishery are evaluated annually by a fall electrofishing survey. This survey directs the fish stockings, fishing regulations and aquatic vegetation treatments. Since 1994, the water level at Citizen’s Lake has been drawn down 5.5 feet in early September as a major fish management practice. The annual fall drawndown increases the predation of small fish, which favors an increased rate of growth in both the predator and prey species.

In 2019, a fall D.C. electrofishing surveys was used to evaluate the fish population. A repeating fish kill occurred from September 2018 into the spring of 2019 at Citizen’s Lake. It was believed to have started as a low desolved oxygen fish kill and then developed into a bacterial fish kill. The fish kill was severe on the south half of the lake and moderate on the north half of the lake. The kill appeared to remove all of the gizzard shad and black crappie populations and only left YOY largemouth bass, bluegill and green sunfish. In 2019, the lake was restocked with largemouth bass, channel catfish, redear sunfish, blacknose hybrid crappie and rainbow trout.

CONTACT / CONTROLLING AUTHORITY
City of Monmouth Clerk’s Office:
309-734-2141
IDNR Fisheries Biologist, Rob Hilsabeck
309-446-9143
NOTICE: Lake-Link Inc assumes no responsibility or liability for any errors or omissions of the information for Citizens Lake. Although we strive to provide the most accurate information as we can the information contained in this page is provided on an "as is" basis with no guarantees of completeness, accuracy, usefulness or timeliness.
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