Lake Anna

Lake Anna, Virginia


Lake Anna is a 9,600-acre impoundment located in Louisa, Orange , and Spotsylvania counties, owned by the Dominion Power Company. The impoundment was completed in 1972 and serves as cooling water for the North Anna Nuclear Power Station. Initial stockings began in 1972, with introductions of largemouth bass, bluegill, redear sunfish, and channel catfish. Subsequent stockings of channel catfish, largemouth bass (northern and southern strains), redear, striped bass, and walleye were made to improve and diversify the fishery. Blueback herring and threadfin shad were successfully introduced in the 1980’s to provide additional forage for pelagic (open-water) predators.

Annual stockings of striped bass and walleye are generally made to maintain the fishery. Prior to 1985, a 12-inch size limit was in effect for largemouth bass. Since that time, a 12 – 15 inch protected slot has been in effect to restructure the largemouth bass population. The current regulation allows harvest of fish less than 12 inches and larger than 15 inches. Fish between 12 and 15 inches must be released. Striped bass are currently managed under a 20-inch minimum size limit.

Lake Anna is a reasonable drive from both Northern Virginia and the Richmond area. Outdoorsman can access Anna at nine private marinas, several campgrounds, and at Lake Anna State Park . Reservoir accessibility creates heavy use by both anglers and boaters, especially during summer months. A 2000 creel survey indicated that fishing pressure was around 24 hours/acre. The most popular species fished for included largemouth bass (69 %), striped bass (15 %), and crappie (12 %). Crappie (70%) were harvested at the highest rate, followed by striped bass (29 %) and largemouth bass (1 %). Surprisingly, almost 99 % of all largemouth bass caught were released!

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Hydrilla vertricillata , an exotic aquatic weed, became established into Lake Anna during the late 1980’s. Abundance increased from 96 acres in 1990 to 832 acres in 1994. Triploid (sterile) grass carp were stocked into Virginia Power’s Waste Heat Treatment Facility in 1994 to control Hydrilla, and Hydrilla abundance is now quite low in both impoundment’s.

Information Gathered from Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.