The Missouri Department of Conservation has a message for people fishing in Lake Taneycomo right now. Biologists say they need to keep in mind that current water conditions make this a stressful time of year for trout. There currently are low levels of dissolved oxygen in the lake, and until cooler temperatures remedy the situation, anglers who fish there and plan to release trout need to minimize the time they take to reel in and release them. When they’re unhooked, gently hold them under water until they can swim off on their own.
According to MDC, beginning in late summer and continuing through fall in most years, cold water coming into Taneycomo from the depths of Table Rock Lake diminishes DO levels due in an annual process known as stratification that occurs over summer in Table Rock. Warm water that’s less dense with adequate DO near the surface does not mix with denser, cooler water deeper in the lake. This depletes DO in the deep layer of the lake.
Trout are also more lethargic right now and less likely to take a lure. Fishing will improve as dissolved oxygen levels improve.