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LA Dept. of Wildlife & Fisheries Schedules Drawdown for Smithport-Clear Lake

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the Bayou Pierre Game and Fish Commission has scheduled a drawdown on Clear-Smithport Lake in Desoto Parish for giant salvinia control, organic reduction and fish habitat improvement. The drawdown is designed to reduce the further expansion of salvinia, as summertime temperatures promote maximum growth.


The water control structure is scheduled to open on August 18, 2016, and the lake should dewater at a rate of 2 to 4 inches per day. The water will be lowered to a maximum drawdown level of 4 feet below normal pool stage. The Clear-Smithport control gates are scheduled for closure on December 1, 2016, to allow the lake to refill for winter and early spring recreational activities.


During the drawdown, an estimated 600 to 700 acres of water will remain in open areas. Boaters may still access the main waterbody with small craft from the Desoto Parish Ramp at the Highway 509 Bridge. Caution is advised during launching and when on the water, as numerous boating hazards will be present.


This action is a necessary component of LDWF’s integrated management plan to control overabundant aquatic vegetation growth and to improve access for recreational activities. An annual cycle of high and low water fluctuation can provide beneficial effects similar to a natural overflow lake system.


For additional information regarding the drawdown, contact Villis Dowden, LDWF Biologist, at or (318) 357-3214.


The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana’s abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us at To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at