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): 85

Trophy Club (10 – 12.9 pounds): 13

Hall of Fame Club (13+ pounds): 1


Current Forecast:

Warm temperatures should lengthen the window of daily bass activity although they will be disbursed throughout the lake.  Early morning and evening fishing will lead to more success.  During the day try fishing the deeper holes of the channel or the box cut sides of the lock area for cooler water.  For the best odds of connecting with a trophy bass, try trolling live golden shiners along the shore line and in shallow water or try slower presented baits around submersed logs.  Panfish are bedding right now can be taken in shallow water near shore.  Try using grass shrimp, crickets, or earthworms.  Redear sunfish can be more effectively targeted while fishing earthworms close to or on the bottom.  Good numbers of catfish can still be caught by using baits fished on the bottom.  Try using cut shad, shrimp, or a live bluegill (caught by legal methods).  Black crappie (speckled perch) can be caught by trolling using live minnows and beetle spins in deep water.

Since March, 20 trophy bass have been caught and recorded in the TrophyCatch program.  Big bass are being seen more and more in the northeastern area of the lake closer to the river.  Register online with FWC’sTrophyCatch program and enter your trophy bass for a chance to win prizes.


FWC Facts:
Just like fish, blue crabs use gills to breathe. But unlike fish, blue crabs can survive out of water for over 24 hours, as long as their gills are kept moist.

Learn More at AskFWC