Kids Fishing Opportunities Enhanced by Pond Renovations in Illinois

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Family fishing Waters Grant helps fund project at Lake Le-Aqua-Na SRA

Kids Fishing Opportunities Enhanced by Pond Renovations in IllinoisLENA, ILL. – The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) is renovating a former fish rearing pond at Lake Le-Aqua-Na State Recreation Area in Stephenson County for use as a kids fishing pond available for fishing clinics and recreational fishing opportunities for families.

The pond renovation project is being supported by a $10,000 grant from the FishAmerica Foundation’s Family Fishing Waters Program and Pro Line Manufacturing.

“Getting kids involved in fishing is one of the best investments we can make in the future of outdoor recreation and conservation stewardship,” said Dan Sallee, IDNR Division of Fisheries regional administrator in Sterling. “We are very pleased to be able to enhance fishing opportunities for young people at Lake Le-Aqua-Na State Recreation Area thanks to the support of the FishAmerica Foundation and Pro Line.  When this project is completed, we’ll have terrific fishing on the lake and on the renovated kids fishing pond.”

Grant funds were used to purchase and install water control equipment.   The IDNR Heavy Equipment Crew will work on sediment removal and reshape the pond basin to better accommodate fishing opportunities for children and families.     IDNR Land Management personnel will seed and prepare the access area around the pond. 

Once completed, IDNR Fisheries staff will stock the renovated pond with a number of sport fish species, including bass, bluegill, sunfish, and channel catfish.  Fishing during kids fishing clinics will be catch-and-release, but it is expected that anglers will be able to keep a limited number of fish they catch at other times. 
The project is expected to be completed sometime in 2009.  Work on the project has been delayed several times this year by heavy rains and flooding.

For more information on the project, contact the IDNR Division of Fisheries regional office at 815/625-2968.