Lake Dockery back open to the public - - The News for South Mississippi

Lake Dockery back open to the public

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JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

There's a new place to cast your fishing lines this spring. For the first time in nearly a decade, Lake Dockery in Byram opened back up for public fishing.

Byram resident Mack Jackson said he'd always pass by Lake Dockery and think to himself "you know that's a nice looking lake just can't believe you can't fish there."

The rules at Lake Dockery changed Saturday. Now fishing poles are swinging and fish are flopping into coolers and buckets. Jackson enjoyed the morning with his sister and nephew whose getting his hands wet at fishing.

"I hope he catches some food, some catfish would be good," said Jackson.

Saturday's "Youth Fishing Day at Lake Dockery" event marks the first time in close to ten years that fishing has been allowed on the lake. In 2004, Lake Dockery's dam leaked, causing the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks to drain it.  After the state granted an $862,000 bond to fix the dam, water was restored and fish were brought back in.

"In 2010 or 2011 we were able to stock largemouth bass, brim and catfish in here," explained Dennis Riecke, a Fisheries Coordinator with the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks.

Twelve year-old LaDedra Bryant said she caught more than a handful of fish Saturday morning.

"I got mostly catfish and I got three brims," explained Bryant.

Sunday marks the official grand opening for fishing at Lake Dockery for the general public. Keep this in mind if you decide to come out.

"Unless you're exempt by law a fishing license is required and no gasoline engines, but that means you can bring a boat with an outboard here you just can't use the outboard to motor around you have to use your trolling motor," said Riecke.

In addition to fishing starting back up in the lake, construction of a ten foot wide walking trail around Lake Dockery is expected to begin this summer.

Lake Dockery opens to the general public for fishing on Sunday, May 5th.

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